Mikhelson Family History


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Compiled by
Sylvia Walowitz Updated  December 2012
Copyright © 2012  Sylvia Walowitz
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Webpage Design by Ronald Miller


This family history is being told by Anatoliy Mikhelson, born in Nikolayev in 1948.

He came up with the idea of building the Novopoltavka Holocaust Memorial, to remember more than 800 Jewish people killed there in 1941.
According to Anatoliy, the russian authorities built a granite monument, with an inscription, about the shameful death of the "Soviet people", but they banned all mention of the Jews. Years passed, leaving family and friends with no place to remember, and only recently, after almost 70 years, it became possible to implement it. The initiative group of Bela Pischits, Lev Traspov, Michael Goldenberg and myself decided to act in 2006. The impetus came from a "gift" of one of the donors in Germany, which left 100 Euros for my cousin Traspov "memory stone" for the Jews killed in Ukraine. I led this group, engaged in the project, raising funds, contractors, Bela Pischits engaged in contacts with local authorities to ensure the legalization of the construction, Lev Traspov selected and supplied the stone from the granite quarry near the town of Pervomaysk (180 km from Nikolayev). We collected money from friends and relatives from Russia, Israel and America.
Currently, there are not Jews in Novopoltavka. The collapse of the Soviet Union touched this village. The street that leads to the outskirts of the village, where the Jews were shot and buried alive, became semi-ruins, very few homes have survived.
We opened the Memorial in September 2007, the anniversary of the shooting. The rabbi read a prayer,and it was attended by family, regional and local authorities, local residents, including the school, which now monitors the Memorial. There is a witness confession in writing.

His father was Lazar Mikhelson (born in Novopoltavka in 1921 and died in Germany in 2004). He was a soldier from 1939-1945. He was awarded the medal "For courage" order of "Fame third degree" (formerly "George Cross"), the Order of the "Red Star" medal "For defense of the Caucasus", "For the capture of Warsaw", "For the capture of Berlin" Order "Patriotic War" and other awards.

His mother was Cecilia Pischits (born in Efengar in 1920, "beautiful river", now the village is called Plyuschevka). She lived in Novopoltavka since 1929, died in September 11, 1992 in Nikolayev. She was a soldier from 1941-1944.
At the age fourteen, she went to Poltava, where she studied at the Hebrew College. She studied about the railway. After college, she worked for the railroad in Nikolayev and she was going to marry Michael Yankelevich, a resident of Novopoltavka, but the war intervened. He died in the early days of the war - burned down in the tank. Mother, in this mountain area, went to the front. Before that, she was able to arrange for some relatives to evacuate. Many refused to leave their homes, they could not imagine that a civilized nation can cause the genocide of any people, including Jews. They said that we have done nothing wrong to the Germans? They did not believe it. And here's the result ...

He has a twin brother Vladimir, who emigrated with his family and father to Germany.
His maternal grandmother Ettl ben Moisey Aizikova Uttley was born in Novopoltavka in 1898, died in Nikolayev three months after his daughter Cecilia, in December 1992. After she married Anshel ben Usher Pischits, they went to live with his family, but they had to return to Novopoltavka due to the actions of the government with the expropriations of the land.
"My grandmother was a cousin of Lev Davidovich Bronstein, known worldwide as Leon Trotsky!
His parents were petty bourgeois, and lived in a small village near Kirovograd next to Alekstandriya oblasti.
My grandmother told me about a cousin she met during a visit with her parents to a rich family Bronstein during the holidays".

Anshel Pischits was one of the managers at the agriculture colony, both before and after the war.

Anatoliy's paternal grandfather, Leib Mikhelson, was born in Novopoltavka in 1880. He emigrated to Argentina at the beginning of the 20th century, but he came back before 1917 and married Cecilia Kann.
According to Anatoliy, the return of his grandfather from Argentina, it is a romantic and tragic story. "My grandfather before leaving with his family to Argentina was in love with my grandmother Cecilia Kann ( a large and wealthy family.) Her parents objected to their marriage and the young man went to Argentina, but he couldn't stay there, he came back and they were married, despite the opposition of relatives. Her dowry was deprived, and they started from scratch.

Their three children born in Novopoltavka:
Gittya (1918-1985), Lazar (Anatoliy's father) and Sarah, born in 1925. Sarah's son, Lev Traspov, is married to Larissa Perman.

Leib killed himself in 1930 as a protest against collectivization and expropriation of his livestock. He could not resist the power of persecution and committed suicide, leaving small children with a defenseless widow. They were very poor. When Lazar was 14 yearsold, he went to Nikolayev to work for the Shipyard, and then to the Army.
His ancestor, Gershon Mikhelson, arrived with other Jews and Germans from the peninsula in Latvia. He was the first head of administration (Schultz) elected in 1841, and one of the founders of the agricultural colony of Novopoltavka
About the family Perman, Anatoliy says:

Samuel Perman, who miraculously survived from being shot by the nazis, has a daughter Larissa married to Lev Traspov.
Another relative is Jacob ben Moses Perman, whom I knew and worked with him at the shipyard "to them. 61 Communards "in Nikolayev. He was born in Novopoltavka in 1912, and died in Israel in 2011. His son is my close friend Moses ben Jacob Perman who is living in Israel. He has a daughter and two granddaughters, who are serving in the army of Israel.


House of Anatoliy's mother family in Novopoltavka



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