|Horodok Stories Menu|
|Horodok Home Page|
|Moshe Baran of Horodok
Moshe was born in 1919 in Horodok to Ester nee Weisbord from Volozhin (born in 1902) and Yosef Baran who was born in Horodok 1890 (His grandfather; Avraham Pinchas was born in Oshmina grandmother; Riva Risha). Moshe's parents met when his father attended the Volozhin Yeshiva and he had a "Keset" (room and board) at the house of the Weisbord family in Volozhin.
Ester nee Weisbord had four sisters;
1. ? Married a Persky in Volozhin and had two daughters; Gitel born c 1912 and Zila born c 1916. Gitel was married before the war. The family perished in Volozhin.
2. Shoshke married Yisrael Mayzel and lived in Horodok. At one point they immigrated to the U. S and some of their children were born there. The family returned to Horodok were the mother died. some of their children went to Cuba and in 1950 went to Louisiana. The rest of the family perished in Horodok.
3. Bela, a twin sister to Ester went to Louisiana (Shreveport) she had a family there.
4. Chana married a lampart and perished in Volozhin.
Moshes' father; Yosef Baran had a brother; Hirshel Leib Baran who moved to Kurenets after his wife died. One of his sons also moved to Kurenets. Hirshel perished in Kurenets. His son escaped to the forest and was later killed. Moshe had twin sisters; Mina and Musha, they were born in 1928 his brother Yehoshua was born in 1922.
In 1928 the family moved to Rakov. The father had a leather factory there. Yakov Lifshitz was Moshes' teacher in Rakov. Pruma nee Shulman lifshitz (Yakov's wife) was his teacher in Horodok.
The family lived in Rakov until 1932 and then returned to Horodok.
Moshes' father and one of his sisters perished in the holocaust. Moshe, his mother, his brother Yehoshua and the other sister were sent to the work camp in Krasne.
One time when Moshe was working on the rail road for the Germans two Jews from Warsaw were working near by. They were ordered to put away some Russian weapon that the Germans found. Moshe and the guys were able to hide some of it and take it to the Ghetto. In January of 1943 a Jewish woman asked Moshe to help her to escape with her two children (7 and 9) she told him that she knew of a forest were other Jews from the area were hiding and she would take him there if he would help them escape.
Moshe took his weapon and escaped with the woman and her children. They arrived in the area of Kramnitz near Ilja and found the Jews. Since Moshe had weapon he became a member of the partisan unit Hanokem (Masitel) the leader was Lunin and the Komisar was Patashkevitz.
Moshe was able to help his mother, sister and brother escape from the Krasne camp on March 17,1943 two days before the camp was annihilated. Moshe served with the partisans until 1944. In the spring of 1944 when the Germans knew that they had lost the war in the East (Of Europe) they started a huge blockade against the partisans. Moshe and his unit were hiding in the marshes for many days.
Moshes' Mother; Ester was the only Jewish mother in Horodok who survived the Holocaust. After the war ended the family was on the way to Israel when the family of Ester's sisters in Shreveport, Louisiana found out that they survived. They pleaded with them to join them in the U. S. They were well of and helped them to settle in America.
Today Moshe lives in Pittsburgh next to his sister. Yehoshua lives in Los Angeles.
Moshe told me that some years ago he visited Yisrael Garber the son of the Shochet of Horodok who now lives in New York. Yisrael had a movie that was made in Horodok in 1933 by David Shapira who was born in Horodok.
David left Horodok when he was 13. He did well in America and in 1933 he returned to Horodok joined by his wife and son. he donated large sums of money to the Rabbi of Horodok for the community. They also gave five dollars to each person even to the little children. They also made a film of their visit. Moshe knew that the film must be for more then a personal use. He transferred it to a video and sent copies to Horodok natives in Israel and also gave copies to Jewish organizations. The video Horodok could be ordered for $30 at;
"Image Before My Eyes," is the name of a 90-minute film about Jewish life in the Pale of Settlement between the two World Wars. The video includes some, but not all, of the footage from the Horodok silent video, as well as some different footage of what was obviously the same visit. This excerpt also includes interviews, segments on other locations and on other topics, including the wooden synagogues, of which so very few remain. The modern parts are in color, and the entire 90-minutes is also available through The National Center for Jewish Film at Brandeis.
Moshe told me that there are other videos of
Resistance and Stories of Jewish Partisans that he (and some other partisans from the area of Horodok and other areas ) detail their battle first for survival and then for revenge in the towns and forests of Poland, Lithuania, and Belarus between 1941 and 1945.
Story: A Look in the Eyes of Resistance
Story: A Look in the Eyes of Resistance