Photo taken in:KyustendilYear when photo was taken:1915Country name at time of photo:Bulgaria, 1878-1944Country name today:Bulgaria
This is a photo of my mother's family from Kyustendil. The photo was taken probably in 1915. The photo shows my maternal grandparents Yuda and Bohora Haravon. First on the right is Isak Haravon - sitting next to my grandmother. Standing above them from left to right is my uncle Buko Haravon with his wife Matilda. The man standing in the middle is Chelebi Haravon, who is the second son of my grandparents. Behind my grandmother the man with the bow-tie is Mois Haravon, next to him, fourth in the row is my mother Sarina Kohen. Next to my grandfather on the left is my mother's other sister Victoria.
My mother's kin comes from Kyustendil. My mother's parents Yuda and Bohora Haravon lived there. I went there every summer when I was a student in the first grades of the Jewish school. My grandfather was a tinsman and my grandmother - a housewife. My mother's kin is very large. She had six brothers - Yosif, Rahamim, Shimon, Nissim, Chelebi and Mois Kohen. What is interesting about them is that my grandmother's parents left as early as the beginning of the 20th century, around 1906-1907 to the blessed land (Palestine at that time) to die there. They left their lands, their children and set off. My mother Sarina Kohen was 8-9 years old then. As far as I know my grandparents have graves in Jerusalem.
There were a lot of Jews in Kyustendil. They had their own synagogue and a community house. My grandparents lived in the Jewish neighborhood, which was around the synagogue. I remember that they lived in a small house, which had a ground floor and another floor. A relative of my grandfather's lived on the ground floor. His name was Manoah, and on the next floor lived my grandfather's family and my uncle Isak Haravon.
My maternal grandfather had two sisters Reyna Elazar and Sara Elazar, who had many children. They both adopted the family name Elazar after they married, but I do not remember if their husbands were relatives. Both sisters were very different. Sara was more talkative and funny and the other one was stricter and more aristocratic. My grandfather was the eldest. He was a silent, but a pleasant man.
My mother had four brothers - Buko-Aron, Chelebi, Mois and Isak Haravon and two sisters - Sofi Haravon and Victoria Eshkenazi. The eldest one, Buko-Aron Haravon was a shoe merchant. He lived in Sofia and died in 1951. His wife is from Sofia and her name is Matilda. They had two daughters - Liza and Bienvenida, who died in 1944 as a partisan. Chelebi Haravon was a tinsman and sold coal. He moved to Sofia, where he opened a warehouse for combustibles. His wife was born in Sofia and her name was Buka. He died from apendicitis in February 1938. They had three children - Leon Haravon, who died as a partisan, Sofi Mayer, who left illegally for Palestine in 1945 and Nissim Haravon, who died in Israel. He was a composer. Mois Haravon was also a merchant. He went to Sofia when he was young. In 1930 he married his wife Roza Katalan, who is from Sofia. They left for Israel during the big aliyah in the 1948 - 1950. They have two sons - Leon and Gavriel, who live in Israel. My mother's youngest brother Isak Haravon, was an electrical technician. He lived mostly in Kyustendil. He was a fan of Tolstoy as regards moral and character. He did not drink and he was a vegetarian. His wife's name was Matilda, nee Benaroya, and she was born in Berkovitsa. They left for Israel. They have two children - Ida Levi, who was a housewife and Yeuda Haravon, who worked as an electrical engineer. Isak Haravon and his family lived in Ramat-Gan. One of my mother's sisters Sofi died very young while giving birth. About her I only know that she married a Jew from Botevgrad. My mother's other sister Victoria Eshkenazi, married in Sofia. Her husband's name is Gershon Eshkenazi and he was born in Ruse. She was a housewife and her husband worked in the enamel factory [factory producing dishes for Sofia]. They moved to Israel and she died there. She did not have any children.