Aug 12/13 Lutzk

We arrived in Lutzk, the provincial capital of Volyn. This is where my Grandma Jeanne (at 1 year) with her Mother Rachel left from, for America. I’m hoping to find info on her and her father Jacob in Lutzk. We’ll visit the Archives tomorrow, Monday. I have no information on Jacob’s emigration, marriage or birth. 

In the meantime we visited sites in the city. As we left from checking-in the hotel we heard Ukrainian folk music coming from the festival across the street. 

Lutzk is a large spread out city, dotted with plaques that indicate that Jews where here.

We visited Lubart’s castle near the Great Synagogue. Lubart’s is called high castle and is a traditional medieval type castle with views of commercial sites. 

At the sword exhibit, I saw 1 sword, 3 battle axes, and 4 muskets. Now I know why it was called a Sword Exhibit and not a Swords Exhibit.

The Great Synagogue, formerly known as low castle was built in 1629. It was the religious, educational, and community center of Lutsk Jews until 1942. It’s currently used as a gymnasium, the plaster is falling down on the outside, so caution tape surrounds the building. It is right next to the bridge of the road leading to Lviv and the bridge used to take 17,000 Jews to Polunka where they were exterminated.

We visited the memorial site the following day. Not a sign, plaque or direction to the monument. You have to find a local who can vaguely give you the directions that take you on the road to Lviv, turn left after the highway to Rivne and then through the sugar factory on the left hand side. At least this time there where stacks of stones from visitors; despite the difficulty of finding the monument and killing field. Polunka Hill is wrong; no hill. It’s before you get to Polunka. The monument honors bothe the 17,000 killed at this site, plus the 6,500 killed in other actions.

35 Oks’s, 3 Galun’s and 2 Shkurnik’s from were known to have died in the Lutzk exterminations.

When I get back after my trip I’m going to offer-up GPS coordinates for the sites we visited.