Cernăuți / Czernowitz / Chernivtsi School Records

During World War II northern Bukovina found itself overrun by various armies multiple times. The Romanian government enacted a system of school evacuations for border regions which affected most of northern Bukovina and parts of southern Bukovina. School staff, pupils, and archives were removed to locations deep within the borders of the state. Or at least, that was the plan. In the chaos of the war, it appears that these plans were only sometimes and partially carried out. Nevertheless, probably as a result of these partial-evacuations state archive branches across the country may have documents related to schools and communities far outside their county borders.

We assume this is how documents from schools in Czernowitz (Cernăuți between the wars, Chernivtsi, Ukraine today) came to be in the Suceava state archives. These collections are never complete, but can be interesting even so. The first two images are from the Greek-Orthodox school in Czernowitz (1899), where, according to the state archive notes to this collection, the famous German-language poet Paul Celan attended school. 

The last three images are diploma receipts from a boys’ trade school - apparently attended by girls as well!

Like all of Bukovina, Czernowitz, the capital, was ethnically diverse. There was no absolute majority but Jews made up the relative majority at about 30% of the population.