Limbenii Vechi (Staryye Limbeny) | Glodeni

/ Milia C., born in 1927:  “When the war started, the soldiers took all the Jews from Limbenii Vechi to the camp in Limbenii Noi. All the Jews I knew perished there (…)”© Kate Kornberg - Yahad-In Unum Vasile C., born in 1927:  “I saw around 2,000 Jews taken in columns to the camp. The soldiers who were guarding the column were throwing bodies of victims from the camp directly into the river.”© Kate Kornberg - Yahad-In Unum Lia C., born in 1932 :   “I saw the column of Jews passing by my house, it was guarded by soldiers. I remember that even old people among them were walking on foot and that the soldiers beat them to make them go faster.” © Kate Kornberg - Yahad-In Unum Paraskovia L., born in 1928:  “Moldovans could ask the village mayor to employ prisoners of the camp fit to work to exploit them in their fields. They would pay them with food for their work.” © Kate Kornberg - Yahad-In Unum Vasile C., born in 1927 brought YIU’s team to the mass grave of an unknown number of Jews that perished in the transit camp of Limbenii Noi. © Kate Kornberg - Yahad-In Unum Vasile C., born in 1927:  “When the Jews died in the camp, Limbenii Noi residents were requisitioned to dig pits near the river and to transport the cadavers on their carts with ten-fifteen bodies on each to bury them.” © Kate Kornberg - Yahad-In Unum Mass grave of the victims that perished in the camp of Limbenii Noi. According to the archives, about 800 Jews died or were killed in the camp during a few months of its existence. They were buried in several mass graves. © Kate Kornberg - Yahad-In Unum

Execution of Jews in Limbenii Vechi

1 Execution site(s)

Kind of place before:
Period of occupation:
Number of victims:

Witness interview

Paraskovia L., born in 1926: “When the war began, all the Jewish inhabitants of the village and the surrounding villages were gathered and taken to Limbenii Noi where a camp for Jews had been established on the property of Leonard who was a former land master. The prisoners at the camp were put in cattle barns while some stayed outside in an open air. Many were dying of hunger and diseases. Their bodies were put on stretchers by feet and legs and brought to the nearby pit where they were buried. Moldovans could ask the village mayor to employ able-bodied prisoners to exploit them in their fields. It was necessary to obtain an official paper from the village mayor to present it to the guards to use the prisoners. My father was able to make such an arrangement with Romanian soldiers and he employed a Jewish prisoner for one day- atailor with his son to sew clothes. In exchange for the service they were paid with food (…)” (Witness N°208M, interviewed in Limbenii Noi on April 27, 2016)

Soviet archives

[…] In addition to this, it is established that the accomplice of the Romanian authorities, the head of the post Duka, systematically arrested Soviet activists, like Gueras, [illegible] and others, 7 people in total. […] It is also established that the Romanian occupiers took all the Jewish families of Staryye Limbeny, about 20 people, who never returned and who are not known where. [Act drawn up by the Soviet State Extraordinary Commission (ChGK) on April 14, 1945; GARF 7021-86-83]

Historical note

Limbenii Vechi is a town and a commune in Glodeni District in northwestern Moldova. It is located about 9km from Limbenii Noi.Little is known about the prewar Jewish community from Limbenii Vechi. The Soviet archives mention that about twenty Jews lived in the village before the outbreak of WWII. They were merchants.

Holocaust by bullets in figures

The area was occupied by German and Romanian troops in July 1941. Shortly thereafter, a transit camp was created in August 1941 in Limbenii Noi, the village located about 9km from Limbenii Vechi. It was established on the territory of a former kolkhoz between two villages. According to the Chisinau Gendarme Inspectorate report, the number of detainees was 3,000 on August 19, 1941. In September there were 2,634 Jews in the camp. Jews were brought to the camp from different localities, such as Fălești (1,500 persons), Sculeni, Balatina, and most probably from Limbenii Vechi, as well as from many other surrounding towns and villages before being deported to Transnistria. Ivan B., born in 1929, remembers seeing several convoys of Jews being escorted through the village to the camp. Men, women, and children were brought to the camp on foot and with carts for several days from different directions. The camp was fenced in with wire and walled with clay stone. It was guarded by Romanian gendarmes. In the camp, the Jews were kept in lamentable conditions. Some were put in the few cattle barns but most of them slept on the bare earth in the open air. Young girls were systematically raped. Daily, about fifteen to twenty people died in the camp because of the harsh living conditions, different diseases, and hunger. The sick were loaded onto carts and shot in a nearby wood. In total, about 800 Jews perished in the Limbenii Noi camp. After a few months, 2,654 Jews (877 men, 908 women and 869 children) from Limbenii Noi camp were deported to Mărculeşti camp (Fălești District). Dozens of them died on the way. During the investigation conducted in Glodeni region in November 2012, YIU’s team identified two mass graves of Jewish victims that perished during the existence of the transit camp in Limbenii Noi. In April 2016, during the second investigation trip conducted in the region, YIU’s team managed to identify a third mass grave of Jews who died or were killed in Limbenii Noi camp.

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