Jacky Barkan. Collection

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This collection contains six articles from Belgian newspapers Het Volk, Het Nieuwsblad and De Gentenaar, covering the story of Jacky Barkan, a hidden child, in search for the De Meulemeester family that hid him in Sint-Kruis-Brugge. During his search, Jacky also discovered that Gabriel and Edouard Zimmerman and Henri Schlamowitsch were hidden by other members of the De Meulemeester family, living in Brussels.
2000
LONCIN Joost, Geheime routes en netwerken. Joodse kinderen op de vlucht voor de Holocaust, Leuven, 2003.
Joost Loncin, journalist
Dutch
Latin
Digitally stored at Kazerne Dossin
The newspaper articles which are part of this collection were published in the Belgian newspapers Het Volk, Het Nieuwsblad and De Gentenaar by journalist Joost Loncin in 2000.
KD_00069
Collection
7 digitised images (6 newspaper articles)
Jacky Barkan's name appears as Benjamin Blockerman/Borzykowski in the registration booklet kept by Andrée Geulen, a resistance fighter working for the Jewish Defence Committee, a hiding network in Belgium (see image KD_00030_0001_000006).
Jacky Barkan was born as Jacques Charles Borzykowski in Brussels on 8 August 1938.
His father Benjamin Blockerman (also Blacherman) had been born in Janów, Poland, on 26 November 1897. Benjamin became a tailor specialised in cutting parts for caps. On 3 May 1925 he married Jeta Chroscicka in Biała, PolandBenjamin’s brother Abraham Blacherman owned a small clothing workshop in Brussels, Belgium, from where he exported hats to the Belgian Congo. In 1928, Abraham arranged for Benjamin to emigrate to Belgium to work in his studio. Benjamin Blockerman arrived in Anderlecht, Brussels, on 1st August 1928. His wife Jeta apparently stayed behind in Poland and Benjamin probably divorced her in the early 1930s.
Jacky Barkan’s mother, Chana Borzykowska, was born in Radomsko, Poland, on 31 May 1904. In January 1932 she emigrated to Antwerp, Belgium. Her parents had passed away and Chana’s only siblings, her two sisters, had both moved to Belgium. Chana became the nanny at the home of her sister Laja Borzykowska and brother-in-law Majer Jakubowicz. Later that year, Chana moved in with her other sister Churcha and her broter-in-law Josef Krzepicki to take care of Churcha who was sick. In 1933, Chana Borzykowska left her sisters in Antwerp and moved to Brussels, where she probably met Benjamin Blockerman.
When war broke out in May 1940, Benjamin, Chana and their toddler son Jacky lived at Rue Haute 147 in Brussels. In October 1941, they moved to Rue Blaes 117, one block away. In 1942 or 1943, Jacky’s parents came in contact with Andrée Geulen, a member of the Jewish Defence Committee (Comité de Défense des Juifs or JDC). This hiding network hid over 3,000 Jewish children in Belgium during the war. On 20 February 1943, Chana Borzykowska left her son Jacky at the office of a medical centre in the Marollen, a popular neighbourhood in Brussels.
Jacky would never see his parents again. He was picked up at the centre by Marcelle and Madeleine De Meulemeester, two sisters who placed Jacky in hiding at the home of their brother Jean De Meulemeester in Sint-Kruis-Brugge. The two unmarried sisters themselves hid Gabriel and Edouard Zimmerman and baby Henri Schlamowitsch at their own home in Brussels. Jacky stayed with the De Meulemeester family until the beginning of 1944 when Jean and his wife Josiane were arrested upon suspicion of resistance activities. Jacky was then transferred to the home of the Van Gerwen family in Buggenhout, where he stayed until liberation.
Jacky’s parents, Benjamin Blockerman and Chana Borzykowska, were both killed after deportation from the Dossin barracks to Auschwitz-Birkenau via Transport XX on 19 April 1943. In 1946, the Van Gerwen family tried to adopt Jacky. However, he was redeemed by an uncle and an aunt, who placed him in several Jewish orphanages in Belgium, where Jacky was prepared for emigration. In 1949, Jacky was sent overseas and lived in several kibbutz in Israel where he became Jacky Barkan. He became an actor and director, married and had a daughter. In 2000 Jacky travelled to Belgium and, with the help of journalist Joost Loncin, found the De Meulemeester family who hid him.
In 2004, copies of the newspaper articles regarding the search of hidden child Jacky Barkan for the family that hid him during the war were offered to Kazerne Dossin by journalist Joost Loncin who covered the search in several Belgian newspapers.
Joost Loncin, 2004

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