Yosef Zilberberg

Adolescent boy in a shirt and jacket
Painting of an older woman with dark hair wearing a white head wrap.
Asia Zilberberg, by Yosef Zilberberg, Courtesy Yosef Zilberberg

Yosef Zilberberg was born in Tuchyn in 1933. He lived with his parents Yaakov and Asia and his two older brothers, Itkhak and Aharon. Yosef loved to paint, and he produced many paintings of his family and Tuchyn when he was older.

Painting of tomatoes, carrots, and celery in vibrant colors.
Best of Our House, by Yosef Zilberberg, Courtesy Yosef Zilberberg.

Yosef and his family lived on a main road that had gardens and fruit trees all around them in private gardens. His mother grew gorgeous fresh vegetables for them to eat. She also sold them at their family’s general store.

Yosef had many relatives in Tuchyn. Every night people from his extended family came over to their house to drink tea and tell stories. Yosef also lived near his cousin Avraham Elbert, who was a few years older.

Photograph of a dark-haired adolescent young person.
Avraham Elbert, c. 1940s, The Jews of Tuchin and Kripe in Front of Their Murderers.

Yosef had good memories of Tuchyn, and his family lived alongside their Ukrainian neighbors and did business with them. But, this area was often a hard place for Jews to live.

In 1939, when Yosef was six, war broke out. The Russians took over Tuchyn and it became hard for his family to sell goods from the store. His mother grew vegetables and his father sold milk and cheese from two cows.

In the summer of 1941, the Germans invaded the Soviet Union and drove the Russians out of the town. In this exhibition, you will learn what happened under the Germans by hearing more about the Zilberbergs and other Jewish families in Tuchyn.