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ChGK Soviet Reports

The Yad Vashem Archives hold a vast collection of documents amassed by the Soviet Extraordinary State Commission (ChGK).

Report of the ChGK, Pervomaiskoye Report of the ChGK, Pervomaiskoye GARF 7021-9-194, copy YVA JM/19685

The following report of the ChGK from May 27, 1944 contains a description of the mass murder of the Jews in Pervomaiskoye:
From the testimony of Stepan Beznos, who was born in 1882:
... On January 21, 1942 about 15 German soldiers and SS officers arrived in our village in two private cars, two trucks, and one covered gas van [and] stopped at the kolkhoz office about 100-110 meters across from where I live so I could see everything. I saw with my own eyes how the village elder Rogozhkin went with the Germans to the houses where Jews lived and started to force at gunpoint all the old people, young people, women, and children toward the office. All the Jews were collected without their belongings. All the Jews whose names appear on the list I have authenticated with my signature were pushed into the office. Then the covered truck backed up to the doors of the office. Soldiers ... started to force the people into this truck, this gas van. I saw how old Yakobson could not get into the truck and fell down. The soldiers started to kick him and strike him with their rifle butts. Then two soldiers took him by the arms and legs and threw him into the truck. With my own eyes I saw the Germans push into the truck women with children, for example,Fanya Mitman with her child of one year and a half and Fanya Bernshteyn with her nursing infant. All 61 people whose names appear on the list that I have signed were loaded by Germans into the truck-gas van. I observed this happening from my house. The body of a woman named Khana Smolyanskaya, who was 40 years old and who died of a heart attack when the Germans came to take her out of her house, was also thrown into the truck. Although she died at home, the Germans took her body and threw it into the truck. Then the truck was closed and driven about 25 meters from the office. Then it stopped. The German driver turned on the engine and, standing upwind, he listened to the gas pipe leading from the engine to the body of the truck by putting his ear to the pipe. Then he went to the other side and listened. The truck stood there for about 15 minutes with the engine running; afterwards, it headed toward Kalinin (Kalininskoye) village....

Report of the ChGK, Pervomaiskoye Report of the ChGK, Pervomaiskoye GARF 7021-9-194, copy YVA JM/19685

The following report of the ChGK from May 27, 1944 contains a description of the mass murder of the Jews in Pervomaiskoye:
From the testimony of Yakov Naumov, who was born in 1887
... On January 21, 1941 Germans who had arrived in the village started to assemble at gunpoint all the Jews -- old people, adults, women, and children -- in the kolkhoz office. I personally saw two Germans soldiers taking past my house old Yakobson, 73 years old, and old Gelfand, 85 years old. Yakobson ... could not walk quickly enough so the German soldiers beat him and he fell down from the blows. The Germans picked him up and continued to beat him and push him all the way to the office. I did not see the loading [of the Jews] into the truck since I was afraid to leave the house. All the Jews who lived in our village were assembled and taken away nobody knows where. Not one of the 54 people whose names are recorded nor the members of the family of 7 people whose last name we do not know came back. Overall, a total of 61 people were taken away by the Germans. The village elder Mikhail Ivanovich Rogozhkin, who has now been sentenced to 20 years imprisonment, showed [the Germans] where the Jews were living....

Report of the ChGK, Pervomaiskoye Report of the ChGK, Pervomaiskoye GARF 7021-9-194, copy YVA JM/19685

The following report of the ChGK from May 27, 1944 contains a description of the mass murder of the Jews in Pervomaiskoye:
From the testimony of Mikhail Durnev, who was born in 1882:
... On January 21, 1942 I saw German soldiers taking to the office a family, Vulf Mostkov, his wife Basya, and their three children - 16 year-old Boris, 7 year-old Valya, and one and a half year-old Roza. 5 automobiles approached the office - 2 passenger cars, 2 trucks, and a big black covered truck with doors in the back. The soldiers continued bringing Jewish families. The village elder, Mikhail Rogozhkin, accompanied the soldiers. Leaving my apartment I saw the Smilyanskiy family being taken - 55 year-old Zus, his wife Khana who was 40 years old, and their children, Zhenya - 17, Lyova - 4, and Rakhil - 20. The soldiers went through the village and collected all the others. I saw 61 Jews who lived in our village, whose names were on the list that was read to me, assembled at the office. Then they were pushed into the office. I entered my apartment because I was afraid to be outside and began to look through the window. I saw a big truck with a covered body and a door in the rear back up to the door of the office. Soldiers surrounded it and started to force all the people into the truck by hitting them. Through my thin door I heard the beating and the screams and cries of women and children who were being pushed into the truck. Afterwards the truck was closed and its door was locked. The truck then drove several meters away. The driver turned on the engine and started to listen to the sides of the truck and then bent lower, listening to something. Then he listened to the other side. Immediately afterward it became quiet inside the truck. The German driver smoked a cigartte and then drove the truck toward the village of Kalinin....

Report of the ChGK, Pervomaiskoye Report of the ChGK, Pervomaiskoye GARF 7021-9-194, copy YVA JM/19685

The following report of the ChGK from June 18, 1941 contains a description of the mass murder of the Jews in Pervomaiskoye:
... In the village of Pervomaiskoye Gestapo men forced all the Jewish population into the kolkhoz office to which a gas van was brought; the civilians were beaten with rifle butts, kicked, and pushed into the van. A civilian named Khana Somlyanskaya could not take the abuse and died. Her dead body was thrown into the gas van. After that the [bodies of the] Soviet civilians who had been gassed to death were thrown into a well....
Audio
Roman Borodin was born in 1922 and lived in Pervomaiskoye during the war years
To listen - click here
Roman Borodin was born in 1922 and lived in Pervomaiskoye during the war years
Interview by Mikhail Tyaglyi and Tatyana Velichko
The International Institute for Holocaust Research at Yad Vashem