Nyzhni Stanivtsi (Nizhniye Stanovtsy, Staneshti) | Chernivtsi

/ Volodymyr L., born in 1933: “They didn’t pity local [non-Jewish] population either. They burned the houses, robbed, did everything they wanted.”  ©Les Kasyanov/Yahad - In Unum. Olha Ie., born in 1933: “I followed one of the groups of Jews being taken to the field. I didn’t know what would happen but I was curious to see where they were taken.” ©Les Kasyanov/Yahad - In Unum. Veronika H., born in 1934: “During the night, when the Jews were about to be killed, their houses were looted. They were people from our village but also from the surrounding villages who would come and take everything they wanted from the houses.” ©Les K The Yahad team during an interview with a local witness. ©Les Kasyanov/Yahad - In Unum. The former building of a tavern owned by a Jew. ©Les Kasyanov/Yahad - In Unum. The surviving tombstones at the Jewish cemetery in Nyzhni Stanivtsi. ©Les Kasyanov/Yahad - In Unum. The surviving tombstones at the Jewish cemetery in Nyzhni Stanivtsi. ©Les Kasyanov/Yahad - In Unum. A former Jewish house. ©Les Kasyanov/Yahad - In Unum. The majority of the Jews lived in the town center. The Jewish street where most of them lived. ©Les Kasyanov/Yahad - In Unum. Approximate location of the synagogue, since destroyed. ©Les Kasyanov/Yahad - In Unum. The approximate location of a Jewish school. Back then it was located next to a synagogue. Both buildings were destroyed during the Soviet period. ©Les Kasyanov/Yahad - In Unum. The building of a former courthouse where the Jews were locked for several days without food or water before being taken to be shot. ©Les Kasyanov/Yahad - In Unum. The building of the courthouse from inside. ©Les Kasyanov/Yahad - In Unum. The execution site of about 80 Jews murdered by a local gang after having been detained in the selsoviet building for five days. ©Les Kasyanov/Yahad - In Unum. Volodymyr L., born in 1933: “They were gathered and detained in the village, but shot outside, in a field. It was the elderly people, and those unfit to walk who were shot.”  ©Les Kasyanov/Yahad - In Unum. The execution site of 33 Jews were tortured and murdered in Stanivtsi by a local gang in July 1941. ©Les Kasyanov/Yahad - In Unum. The bodies of the Jews murdered in the field were reburied at the orthodox cemetery.  ©Les Kasyanov/Yahad - In Unum.

Execution of Jews in Nyzhni Stanivtsi

2 Execution site(s)

Kind of place before:
Field (1); Ravine (2)
Period of occupation:
Number of victims:

Witness interview

Olha Ie., born in 1933: "The Jews were killed outside the village in the field right next to the road. The shootings lasted day and night. Once, I followed a group of Jews being taken there during the day. All the Jews were forced to get into the pit and were shot. With some friends of mine we went to the site to see what was happening, because we were children, you know, we wanted to know everything. The shooters didn’t chase us away because we were children, although the adults were chased away and were forbidden from coming close. After the shooting, the pit was filled in.” (Witness n°2316U, interviewed in Nyzhni Stanivtsi, on October 20, 2017)

Soviet archives

"In July 1941, after the departure of the Soviet troops, the members of the organization "Za samostiinu Ukrainu" (‘For independent Ukraine’) shot about 80 Jews in the village Stanivtsi Dolychni. Among those shot, there were more men than women and children between the ages of 1 and 3. On July 4, 1941, the members of this organization gathered the Jewish population in the selsoviet building using weapons and batons. From there, they were transferred to the court building, where they remained for almost 5 days. From there, they were taken at night in groups of 5 1 km from the village, stripped naked and shot. The bodies of those shot were left there. Some Jews were taken to the shooting site, stripped naked, tortured, legs and arms were torn off, they were beaten, women’s breasts were cut off. Some were tortured to death, others were shot. [The executioners] took the property of the murdered Jews. Their bodies were left out in the open for two weeks and then covered with earth. Among those shot were my father, my grandmother, my uncle and my cousins. My relatives were also tortured. On the same day, 56 Jews from Stanivtsi Gorichni were brought here to be shot, but they were forbidden from shooting them here and were forced to bring them back to Stanivtsi Gorichni and shoot them there near Selsoviet. Then the bodies were brought here and thrown away without being buried. These bodies remained in the open air for two weeks, and were then covered with earth." [Deposition of a Jewish survivor Zhenia Ryvner, done on August 8, 1944, by the Soviet State Extraordinary Commission; GARF 7021-79-71]

German archives

"Before the Soviet army left the village, they appointed a Ukrainian villager (Foca) as mayor. During the night, the villager Macovei S. and eight other citizens went to the house of the mayor Foca and killed him. Then they took over the village (...) A few days later, this gang started to gather all the Jews of the village in the town hall. Shortly afterwards, they were taken to a field, stripped naked and shot." [Archives Serviciul Român de Informații; RG25.00M, Reel 15, p. 544-547.]

Historical note

Nyzhni Stanivtsi is a town located in the historical Bukovina region, 36 km (22mi) northwest of Chernivtsi. The first record of the Jewish community dates back to the second part of the 19th century. Before 1918, the village was part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. From 1918 to 1940 it was integrated into Romania, and in 1940 was taken over by the Soviet Union until 1941. The Jews were mainly artisans, such as shoemakers, tailors, backers, watchmakers, carpenters, plumbers, barbers, locksmiths, coopers, distillers and blacksmiths, or lived off small-scale trade or the lumber industry. One Jew owned a local distillery factory. 

Holocaust by bullets in figures

Nyzhni Stanivtsi was occupied by the Romanian army in mid July 1941. When the Soviets retreated, power was taken over by a group of locals who arrived from the Transcarpathia region. Apparently, they were local nationalists who wanted to rebuild an independent Ukraine. In late June or early July, 1941, according to different sources, local Jews, mainly men, and some women, were gathered in the courthouse building, where they were detained for several days. Five days later, they were divided in two groups and taken to be shot. The shootings were conducted by local nationalists during the night. According to an eyewitness interviewed by Yahad, some shootings were conducted during the day. In all, 113 Jews were killed in Nyzhni Stanivtsi. Many Jews were tortured during their detention in the courthouse. When the town was occupied by Romanians, the remaining Jews were displaced to Vashkivtsi, from where they were deported to Transnistria. 

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