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"Memoirs of A Woman From Bialystok" translated by Beate Schützmann-Krebs is printed
"Memoirs of A Woman From Bialystok" translated by Beate Schützmann-Krebs is printed
Translation of Zikhroynes fun a Bialystoker Froy 

Published by the JewishGen Press  Author: Rachel Anna Kositza Project Coordinator: Susan Kingsley Pasquariella
Translated by: Beate Schützmann-Krebs Cover Design: Rachel Kolokoff Hopper
Layout: Jonathan Wind 6”x9” hard cover 202 pages

The forward to the book was written by Rachel Anna Kositza`s daughter Gertrude Reed in 1977.

My mother began to write her memoirs at the age of eighty-six. It all began when I told her about Grandma Moses` painting career and challenged her to do likewise. Never one to pass up a challenge, but not being able to paint, she decided to try her hand at writing.

And so, every day, for a period of almost two years, after her household chores were completed (this included cooking for her family, house cleaning and gardening), she would set aside an hour or two for her writing. I can see her now so clearly, sitting at the kitchen table, bent over her white-lined paper, writing away in her round, even, measured handwriting, and proudly showing me each neatly written page, and then with her ever-ready humor, looking up at me, her face broadening into a grin, a twinkle in her light blue eyes, and laughing: “I am now indeed a writer.”

And as she kept at her writing and finally finished the book, I never ceased to marvel at her self-discipline, her singleness of purpose, her drive. And it seemed to me that in this respect she was representative of a type that is fast disappearing from American Jewish life – the Jewish immigrant woman who at the turn of the century, came out of the East European ghetto to the ghetto of America, and by sheer grit and perseverance, undeterred by poverty or hard work, opened up for her children, opportunities for the highest education and self-development.

The grit and perseverance exemplified by my mother was nurtured by the colonyeh. The Jewish colonyeh of Czarist times was an agrarian settlement about which little has been written. The Jews who lived there farmed the land and raised livestock and were authentic peasants.
I am sure that many readers of this book will see in it not only my mother, but their mothers as well, and will remember proudly their origins, back-ground, and the strength and courage of their forebears.
2024-02-02 20:05:13