Partisan Groups in the Holocaust

Adam Severson

What is a Partisan Group?

Jewish partisan groups stole weapons from barns and people, and obtained goods from killing German soldiers. They have to survive in groups as big as 100 people, which makes traveling and camping tough. The most dangerous missions for the partisans were missions for the purpose of obtaining food and needed weapons from the local farmers. In total, an estimated 20,000-30,000 men and women fought back against the German soldiers. For clothes, they broke into rural homes, made boots out of rags, and took the coats and boots of dead soldiers. The groups did things like placing mines on railroad tracks, blowing up and derailing Nazi trains, sabotaging Nazi occupation, ghetto uprising, and freeing prisoners. They helped out other Jews all across Europe.

How are Partisan Groups formed,
and how do you join a Partisan Group?

Mainly, they are formed by people who run away from their town right before or right after it gets invaded by Germans to avoid death and fight back against the people that they hate. In groups of 5-10-50-even 100 people, they simply make plans to survive and fight back against the Nazis, and they become a partisan group. If you have your ID and the correct papers, the head person of the partisan group can let you be an official member of the group.

How do Partisan Groups survive?

They sleep in forts that they build, in trees, caves, and deserted and abandoned barns. They sleep in groups, and in the summer they can survive with minimal shelter, because they don't have to stay warm. They kill Nazi soilders for new coats, boots, and guns. They risk their lives stealing from barns, homes, and shops. They get fruits from nature, and capture and cook animals. Getting food for groups is said to be the hardest part of surviving in a partisan group. One method of making a shelter is to dig a hole about 4-5 feet deep, and 7-8 feet wide and 7-8 feet long. They cover the roof all except for the door with logs, branches, leaves, and snow for warmth and protection during the winter. Otherwise, lean-tos and forts are made because the groups are constantly on the move.

Overall, Partisan Groups were a big help to the survival of other Jews and the killing of German soilders.

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