“Bukovina is in every sense a paradox. Everything is upside down here. It almost seems as if this topsy-turvy element had to belong to the nature of this land, as if its character was to consist of this. Everyone feels that Bukovina is something special, not to be put on a level with the other crownlands and that its cultural ties also have a certain nuance of their own, something different from the ordinary. Yet, they only feel. What this character is, however, very few have so far attempted to fathom.”
This is a citation of Dr. Max Rosenberg from Czernowitz from the year 1914, preposed by H. F. van Drunen to his thesis “‘A Sanguine Bunch’ – Regional Identification in Habsburg Bukovina, 1774-1919” (Book of the Month, January 2015):
One year later, in 2015, under the impression of the devastations caused during the Russian occupation, Dr. Max Rosenberg is visiting the Jewish Cemetery of Sadagora and his impressive report – see above – was published by the prestigious “Pester Lloyd” from Budapest on April 20, 1915:
Auf dem Judenfriedhof von Sadagora. Von Dr. Max Rosenberg (Czernowitz).
Am nördlichen Ende Sadagoras, in der Ecke einer weiten Wiese, ein kleiner, früher umfriedet gewesener Platz. Drinnen die charakteristischen weißen Steine, dicht nebeneinander gestellt, wie betende Juden gegen Osten gewendet. Es ist der Judenfriedhof Sadagoras. Ganz still liegt er jetzt da. Wer ihn betritt, hat aber das Gefühl, als ob jedes Stückchen aufgeworfenen Lehms gar manches erzählen könnte. Viel hat dieser abgeschiedene Ort in der letzten Zeit erdulden müssen. Südlich vom Friedhof liegt das jüdische Städtchen mit seinen niedrigen, von Schindeldächern bedeckten Häusern und den engen winkeligen Straßen. Dort haben die Russen, als sie hier Herren waren, gewütet. Dieser kleine, tote, stille Judenfriedhof gewährt den Eindruck, als wollte er all das wieder erzählen, was der kleine Judenort da unten gelitten.
Excerpt from the article “On the history of the Jews in Czernowitz” by Prof. Dr. Herman Sternberg: “During the war years, Czernowitz could hardly be recognized. People frightened and weighed down with troubles, hurried like shadows through the streets. Military uniforms dominated the cityscape. Officers and tired soldiers were on their way to or from the railroad station. The station building, heated in winter had become a dormitory. Soldiers slept on the floor pressed closely together, leaving no space free. Anyone seeking the entrance had to step over them. The closer the war came to its end, the greater became the lack of food and other necessities. The most difficult articles to obtain were fuel and foot wear. Prices rose from day to day. The greatly reduced Jewish population suffered indescribable difficulties. Intellectual life had died completely. After the fall of darkness, all traffic ceased because the street lights didn’t work. Families generally restricted themselves to one room, dimly lit with an oil lamp. The only topic of conversation was the war and its consequences.”
Courtesy: Jewish Genealogical Society Of Ottawa