A Chilling Detail

“… At that time our relatives from Fastov came to us, escaping from armed gangs. The bandits killed our uncle, and they were so scared. There was nothing to do but to have them stay with us, though we had a very small apartment and their family consisted of eight people…”

These words are from a letter written in Kyiv by Franya (Franka) Ronen to her sister, Fannie (Fenya) Ronen, on August 30, 1922. They describe what happened during the 1919 pogroms in Fastov, where lived the “uncle in Fastov” mentioned so frequently in letters between Fannie and her family. The uncle, Froim Pasikov (Pashkov) had been accused of and then exonerated from a charge of ritual murder in late 1913.

Recently I learned exactly how Froim Pasikov was murdered, but first, some additional information of a more prosaic type:

The 1897 All-Russia Census provides some information about the Pasikov family (at times, especially in newspaper articles about the ritual murder charge, the name was written “Pashkov”). At that time the family, consisting of Froim Zalnikov (32), his wife Bashiva Srul-Gershova (26) and their children Zalman Froimov (8), Sura Froimova (4) and Leiba Froimov (1 ½) lived in a wooden house that they owned themselves. Froim had been born in Gorval, in the Rechitsa District of Minsk Gubernya; the other family members had all been born in Fastov, in the Vasilkov District of Kiev Gubernya. Froimov was a master tailor and the only one working; he and Zalman, (Zalkin), were literate in Hebrew but Bashiva was illiterate.

The house had a second apartment, occupied by the Furmansky family. This family consisted of Yos Mordkov (26), Esther Gershkova (25), Gemendlia Yosefova (3) and Avrum Yosef (1). One wonders if Esther Gerhshkova and Bashiva Srul-Gershova were sisters.

A brief description of the 1919 pogroms in Fastov is at https://familyhistorieslouise.com/meet-the-ronens/fastov/.  Stas Tarasov, the Russian man who I connected with recently through JewishGen.org, sent me some pages he found in a book from the Russian Academy of Sciences Institute of Slavic Studies, State Archive of the Russian Federation. The book is entitled “Pogroms in Ukraine, in Belarus and European Russia…1918-1922.” It is a more in-depth description of the Fastov pogroms and contains this passage:

There were frequent cases when, without being allowed into the house, bandits fired at the front door. Such a case occurred with the famous Pashkov, once accused of ritual murder. When he refused to open the door, the attackers started shooting at it, and Pashkov himself was killed by shots. Bursting into the house, they wounded the wife of the murdered man and child…

These few chilling words give us a vivid picture of the murder of uncle Froim Pashkov to amplify Franka’s terse news of his death. A translation of the full description of the pogroms can be found under the Ronen tab, Fastov sub-heading: https://familyhistorieslouise.com/meet-the-ronens/fastov/pogroms-in-ukraine-in-belarus-and-in-european-russia1918-1922/

May his memory be a blessing.  יהי זכרו מבורך