Anne Zvibelman was born Hannah Taffet in 1937 in the small town of Zbaraz in Poland. She was raised in a Jewish family. Before the war, she lived a comfortable life but Anne did not recall much about her day to day life.
Anne’s life shifted with the start of the war. Anne’s grandfather was taken away after the Nazi invasion of Poland. Around 1941, Anne’s parents sent her to live with family friends—the Stefanowskis—who were not Jewish. They treated her well. During this time, the Nazis placed Anne’s family in a ghetto. One Christmas Eve, her mother took her into the ghetto for a day or two for a visit and then took her back to the Stefanowkis.
Anne’s parents and grandmother ran away from the ghetto during a fire. Tragically, Anne’s father was caught. When the Russians came, Anne, her mother, and her grandmother went back to their home. In spring of 1944, they thought they were liberated. Anne’s grandmother passed away not long after. When the city was re-taken by the Germans, the family began to go to Russia, but instead went further into Poland. Anne’s mother remarried. After a long journey through Poland, they went to a displaced persons camp in Germany.
They were placed in an apartment with three families. In 1949, they moved to St. Louis. Anne graduated high school and married Irvin Zvibelman when she was 17. They had four children together.