“I must say I am very impressed by what you have done, and hope that the book will find its way to every Holocaust library. You are really to be congratulated for a very fine achievement.”
Melody Amsel, an American-born Israeli amateur genealogist, has created a beautifully written yizkor(Holocaust memorial) book about the Jews of Stropkov, Slovak Republic. Many Jewish genealogists have memorialized members of their family murdered in the Holocaust. Ms. Amsel went a step further and not only memorialized the Amsels of Stropkov, but all the Jews of Stropkov. The book has some unusual features for a yizkor book. It is written in two languages: Hebrew and English, each a mirror of the other. It does not have a necrology–a list of those who were killed. Instead, it lists all the Jews of Stropkov (and neighboring communities), identifying the survivors in bold face. The list goes on for 64 pages of Holocaust victims, occasionally interrupted by an entry in bold face to identify a survivor. Of the more than 2,000 Stropkovers identified, only 162 survived the Holocaust.
The narrative is a history of the Jews of Stropkov, from their first presence about 1640 to 1945. Particular emphasis is on life just before the Holocaust and the events during the Holocaust. Amsel personalizes the times by not merely describing life during these periods but by naming Jewish citizens of the town. Clearly she interviewed many of the survivors and described activity as it happened to specific people.
A middle section has more than 100 pictures of the Jews of Stropkov. Heavy emphasis is on life before the Holocaust and even pictures taken during the deportations by a Christian photographer
7" x 10" 352 pages hard cover inc. more than 100 photographs
“Melody Amsel, who worked on [ Between Galicia and Hungary: The Jews of Stropkov ] for years, did a superb job. The book is both beautiful and filled with information.”
–Arthur Kurzweil, From Generation to Generation
“…superb Holocaust literature…instructional and educational, dealing more with what happened than the gruesome particularized details of how it happened…the political overlay that you wove so brilliantly throughout your work …I was astounded at your ability to tie everything together in such a readable and informative manner.”
–David S. Gould, Attorney at Law