Shablykino/Pogoreltsevo | Orel

/ During the morning briefing with the investigators. Yahad’s team locates the places where the executions could have been conducted and where they might find any eye-witnesses © Jordi Lagoutte - Yahad-In Unum Local ambiance. Typical Russian country yard © Jordi Lagoutte - Yahad-In Unum Evgueniy K., born in 1932,  remembered the day when the Jewish refugees were taken and shot in the basement. Earlier that day, he went swimming with his Jewish friend, Izik, for the last time © Jordi Lagoutte - Yahad-In Unum Evgeniy K. leading Yahad’s team to the killing site of Jewish refugees © Jordi Lagoutte - Yahad-In Unum During the interview,  near the killing site © Jordi Lagoutte - Yahad-In Unum The execution site of 14 Jewish refugees, native to the Bryansk region. Evgueniy K., a local inhabitant would like to name this place “Sarah’s lake” in honor of one of the victims who perished here © Jordi Lagoutte - Yahad-In Unum

Execution of Jewish refugees in Pogoreltsevo

1 Execution site(s)

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

Witness interview

Evegueniy K., born in 1932, remembered: « In all, there were 14 Jewish refugees who came from the Bryansk region. But the day of the shooting, Grisha and Yakov were sent to the forest for work. They must have been sent by a starosta. Grisha was a hairdresser and Yakov studied in Moscow to become a veterinarian and he was spending his vacation with his family when the war broke out. So, a local man was asked to go to the forest in order to bring them back. They came back and Grisha discovered that his family had been massacred. Both men were taken to Shablykino where they were forced to dig the mass grave and were shot afterwards.” (Witness n°486, interviewed in Shablykino, on May 16, 2015)

Soviet archives

“On May 20, 1942, at 11 am, a special punitive SS unit arrived in Pogoreltsevo, seolsovet of Shablykino from Karachev. They arrested 14 Jews from their houses. All of these people were locked up in the kolkhoze basement. On May 20, 1942, at 11am, on the order of starosta Ivan Z. and M., kommandant of German Kommandantur in Shablykino, all 14 Jews were shot. The execution was carreid out by German soldiers. On the order of these soldiers, the bodies were buried by local police in the same cellar on May 20, 1942, situated on the territory of the village of Pogoreltsevo.” [Act of Soviet Extraordinary commission, drawn up on November 10, 1944 ; RG-22.029, Fond P-691, opis 1, Dossier P_691_01_002 ; Delo 198]

Historical note

Prior to the war, Pogoreltsevo was situated about 2 km east of Shablykino. Today, the village is part of Shablykino, which is about 68km west of Oryol. Before the war, there were only Russians living in the village. According to Evgueniy K. (Witness n°486), 3 Jewish families, native to the Bryansk region, arrived in autumn as refugees. Apparently, they were craftsmen in their native town but did not work after they moved to Pogoreltsevo. The village was occupied by the Germans in August 1941.

Holocaust by bullets in figures

According to the Soviet archives, 14 Jewish refugees were shot by a special punitive SS unit in May, 1942 in a cellar situated in a field, on the outskirts of the village. Apparently, according to the witness’s memories, only 12 Jews were shot in Pogoreltsevo and two other Jews, Yakov and Grishka, were shot somewhere in Shablykino. The execution site of two Jews remains unknown.

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