Compilation of Memories (Memoirs)
Part 26

Life in Eretz Israel after WWII

At the beginning of the war in 1939, the government of Eretz Israel ordered that all merchandise was under government regulations. No one had the right to buy or sell without the agreement and price that was ordered. In the warehouses, big and small, there were large quantities and fortunes were made. My son and I did not have anything to regulate. Throughout the war of six years, despite the efforts of my son David, who sold for me, we suffered greatly. All the money I saved before the war was gone.

After several months of efforts and expenses, my son David managed to receive from the government the right and permission to operate in my profession, of selling wood. On January 7, 1946, we received a license from the government office in Jerusalem on my name as well as the names of my sons David and Jacob, to import 500 cubic meters of pine wood. With the help of God, we will succeed and make an honorable living. Even though we had a license, we did not do any business because of the high prices abroad and the inferior quality of wood. There was no possibility to profit, just the possibility to lose money. Perhaps time will change that situation.

We celebrated the Pesach of 1946 as we did the previous year with no spark of joy. The wounds are open. We found no relief for our horrendous loss, the loss of our dear missing family. Mr. Aaron D. Flintenstein and Mr. Meir Shlein brought us matzoth shmurot for the Seder as they did last year.

We received the sad news that the son-in-law of my sister Gitel, R’Israel Leib Freifelder was one of the first victims in Kolomyea. I decided to memorialize his dear soul. I volunteered to donate 20 lei which I passed over to his widow, Krenzie Wasserman, daughter of my brother-in-law, R’Moshe Leib Meltzer. She came as a refugee from the hell of Romania with empty hands, sick with a broken body. May the memory of R’Israel Leib Freifelder be blessed תנצב'ה Amen. After life improved for the widow K. Wasserman, she returned the money in cash. This money was sent to back the genius Rabbi from Lithuania, David Sperber in memory of R’Israel Leib Ben Reuben זל תצנב'ה

I have in my possession 30.700 lei to the credit Moshe Katz, according to my book. I gave the money to the Admor of Petshenishin M. S. I. Freidman, בעהש' May 5, 1946, in Tel Aviv and he wrote:

“I verify with this that I received today from the hand of R’Abraham Keusch, Tel Aviv, Rechov Fierberg 23, the amount of 30.700 lie and 70 agurot. This money was held by Mr. Keusch as a deposit for a piece of land that belonged to the deceased R’Moshe Katz זל' from the town of Petshenishin. Abraham Keusch received it in 1940/41 and kept it for Moshe Katz. Since the war ended a year ago and R’Moshe Katz and none of his heirs came to the country and nothing was heard from them it is assumed that they are no longer alive.

“To remember the soul of R’Moshe Katz, Mr. A. Keusch agreed to my suggestion to give that sum to Beit Midrash Knesset Mordechai, Tel Aviv, 10 Rechov Bezalel,Yaffa, Tel

Aviv.This was to buy a crown for the Torah or something similar with that money. R’Moshe Katz’s name should be engraved on it so he will be remembered forever.”

(Pages 149/150)

On that same day when I came in the afternoon, Mordechai Shalom, Joseph Mohar, Aaron Freidman, Admor of Sadagorrah and Petshenishin now from Tel Aviv, were there.

Two other volunteers made a contribution of 100 lei to the crown for the Torah, on which was engraved the name of R’Moshe Katz and his family to be remembered forever. The crown was impressive. תנצב'א

Content last updated Wednesday, March 13, 2013 at 08:10 PM Mountain Standard Time

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Updated March 2013
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