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Basea Moscovici's Story

Basea Moscovici is a current resident of Ungheni

April 3, 2017:

My name is Moscovici Basea- (I was named in the memory of my grand-mother who died in Uzbekistan evacuation in 1943). My mother, Moscovici Molca, was born in Ungheni (also named Ungheni-rus) in 1924. She died in Kishinev at 2008. My grandfather Moscovici (in Tsar period, Mashkovich), David Shmuelevich, was gabay of the synagogue at 20-30th (he was cohen). His house was on the Pan Locotonent (near synagogue). In this place after WWII was the bazaar and now a school.

See map below:


April 4, 2017:

All my life, I have been living in a Russian-language area (I was born in evacuation in Turkmenistan in 1948, and returned to Moldavia in 1959), and Ikh nisht farshtey mame loshen. (translation: I do not understand the mother tongue- Yiddish).

My grandparents were born in Orgeyev: Grandfather was Moshkovich David (b.1888). He was from a rich family and he had to marry a girl from another rich Orgeyev family. Once he met a pretty girl at the charity ball and fell in love. My grandmother, Rabinovich Basya-Raya or Basya-Rasya, had a long fair-haired braid and was often thought to be a Christian- (Once, a Moldavian tried to kiss her on Easter). Her father, Rabinovich Ayzik, was a teacher in a Jewish religious school. They had six children in Orgeyev but it was a poor family- His wife, Menikha. was a midwife.

My great-grandfather, Moshkovich Shmuel, approved the wedding with one condition: They should leave Orgeyev to prevent the suffering of a former girlfriend/fiancť. This girl didn't ever marry. My grandfather bought a house in Ungheni, where an uncle of my grandparents lived (I don't know his name). My grandfather changed his occupation to shoemaker. In the period from 1912 to 1914, he received a prize at an exhibition in Odessa. Their children, who were born in Ungheni, were: Keyla (b.1910-1994, went to Palestine in 1936), Ester (1912-1989), Golda (1915-1991), Leyke (1918-1991), unknown (died in infancy), Molka-Tzylya (my mother - 1921 or 1924-2008), Ayzik (1926-1994), Sosya (1926-2008), Yoyne (1932-2012).

Their house had seven rooms and a small workshop, and was located near the railroad station, Alexander Nevsky Church and the military garrison. Grandpa gave his workshop area to the Soviet authority, known as Kirov Artel. In 1940, the Soviet Military commander occupied several rooms, as he liked grandmaís food. Neighbors were the family Carabet. They survived the Holocaust.

Around 1938, our family moved to Yassy (Iasi) because of Police Chief Yeni who was in love with my grandmother. Once after a fire, the synagogue scrolls were brought to our home and that night, family lore says that Aunt Leyke saw angels near the scrolls.

Another family story is connected with my motherís birth. One time (maybe 1924) there was the biggest fire ever in Ungheni. The local midwife went to see it. My great-grandma Menikha, who was a widow, 65-70 years old, lived in Ungheni with her daughter, my grandma, who was giving birth to my mother. She (great- grandmother or the midwife?) died from cancer in 1931-1933.

The little sister of grandmother, Vasserman Leyke, lived in our house too and was a widow with two children - Rakhil and Ayzik. She traded fired sunflower seeds at the bazaar. His husband. Who was from Skuleny, died of appendicitis. The first time German aviation bombed, Ungheni at 10-11am on June 22th, 1941. After the bombing, she returned to this bazaar place and continued to trade. They were evacuated to Sibir and after WWII one of them came in Ungheni to ask about the survivors. They were told that all had died, they returned to Russia. Their further fate is unknown. My eldest grandaughter was named in the memory of my beloved motherís sister as Liza (Yelizaveta).

Rabinovich Meyer, another little brother of my grandmother, lived in Ungheni too. He had a horse and was a water carrier. He had a whole suitcase of Kerensky money which remained from Russian times. After work, he drank in a tavern. Every time my mother told his older sister, his mother. Always he was angry at my mom and each year in Khoneke-geld he gave Kerensky rubles to her. He had six children (Ayzik, Sura, Leyza, Molka, Etl, Itzik). His eldest son, Ayzik, died in Budeshti military camp near Calarashi, Romania on January 23th, 1942. The fate of the rest is unknown.

April 5:

Now I live in Kishinev (after returning from evacuation we lived in Orgeyev, because my mother could not face seeing Ungheni, the place where she passed her childhood and where her dead loved ones had lived). Our family lived in Ungheni from 1909 to 1940. An uncle and aunt of my motherís later came to Ungheni from Orgeyev.

Do you have information about chief of the Jewish school in the 1920 and 1930s? As I remember from my mother his name was possibly Maguryanu. He was a very wonderful man. He helped poor Jewish children learn in Jewish school. The special fund was founded (he forced riches to made additional money to this fund). All my aunts and uncles studied in this paid school. My mother studied so well that she graduated from 5 classes (a rarity for that time). At the end of academic year the top scholars were put on wreaths and drove along the main street - Maria Regina (now Nationala). The old Jewish cemetery was located on Maria Regina street too but from the side of Pyrlitza and Kishinev.

Moldavans from neighboring villages left us their children when they went to the bazaar. They gave us food for this caretaking (like a kindergarten). In 1930-1932 the Iron Guard organized a Jewish pogrom in Ungheni. Moldavans were given a cart with a horse and guarded the house (our family left for a week in Orgeyev). My grandmother was a member of the volunteer organization. She organized weddings for the poor.

In the end of 1930ís, the Jewish football team played with the Pyrlitza team. My mother went over there often..




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