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[Page 170]

Personalities in the Town

 

Reb Feibush Lipka

by Yehezkel Cohen

Translated by Jerrold Landau

Donated by Steve Bolef

The influence of my grandfather Feibush Lipka of blessed memory (my mother's father) upon me was very great not only during my childhood, but also as I matured and became independent. His patriarchal personality and refined spirit always accompanied me. He was a scholar as well as a dedicated Zionist in his heat and soul, who infected others with his enthusiasm.

His refined and enlightened personality served as a symbol for the Zionist movement in the town, where he radiated his personality primarily upon the Zionist youth. I recall how I enjoyed sitting with him for hours on end, as he told me about his trip to the Holy Land before the war, about the holy places that he visited and the sights that he saw. At such a time, his eyes burned with the fire of enthusiasm, as his words expressed his great love for the Land of Israel.

His emotional words penetrated deeply into my heart, the heart of a youth, and influenced me for a long time. He was the one who planted in me, and in the friends of my age, the love for Zion and the faith in the return to Zion. Under his influence, many youths became enthusiastic Zionists, who were no longer satisfied in following the normative path paved by their fathers.

I recall how he worked for the election of Rabbi Brod of Lipna, the candidate of the Zionists, for the Polish Sejm (parliament). The religious circles supported the candidacy of my father to the Sejm, whereas the Zionists, including me, fought for our candidate. My grandfather Feibush Lipka supported us with his whole heart, and utilized all of his powers of persuasion to that end.

His influence in town was great, and was recognized in all spheres of life. He had a great deal of property: sawmills a flourmill, lumber warehouses, land, and an electric generator that provided electricity to the entire town. Nevertheless, his great wealth did not blind his eyes and did not harden his heart. His headed the charitable institutions and supported his poor brethren with his money and advice.

He visited the Holy Land twice. The first time was in the 1880s, and the second time in 1914, at the eve of the outbreak of the

[Page 171]

First World War. He returned from these visits enthused, and urged the townsfolk to make aliya to Zion.

Feibush Lipka merited to have sons and daughters who followed his path and took part in communal affairs. He also had a great deal of satisfaction from his grandchildren who were affected with his love of Zion and stood at the helm of Zionist activities in the town.

He passed away full of activity and full of years.

 

Reb Feivush Lipka


Yosef Chaim Ruda[1]

by Eizberg

Translated by Allen Flusberg

Yosef Chaim Ruda was an active community leader who had a particularly significant impact on the Dobrzyn community. Always empathetic to all that was happening among his Dobrzyn brethren, he devoted a great deal of his time to community affairs.

It would take too long to go into all the details of what he did for dozens of years, working tirelessly for the sake of the town with no expectation whatsoever of reward. To this very day, many of those who emigrated from Dobrzyn long ago remember him and his many good deeds.

During World War I the number of townspeople in need escalated sharply. Yosef Chaim Ruda came to their rescue, seeing to it that free groceries were distributed to them. In this project he found loyal, dedicated assistants in Avraham Hirsh Kohn, z.l.[2], and Yaakov Beilowski, may he live long[3], who lives among us in Israel.

The First World War uprooted a large number of Jews from various towns. Some of them made their way to Dobrzyn, where they found a temporary refuge to wait out the storm. Chaim Ruda came to their rescue with great passion, working day and night to take care of them. He was always thinking about “the poor among your people”[4], and he took care of them the way a father looks after his children.

He was also one of the founders of the Cooperative Jewish Bank and continuously headed its administration. He considered it a very important institution and worked hard to expand its activity. And indeed, this bank helped many of the people of Dobrzyn with both large and small loans, its central goal being to be able to provide firm support for the “little guy”.

Ruda also served as a member of the committee that assessed taxes, which met right next to the income–tax office. In this role as well he revealed his humane approach and his great dedication.

However, most of all Ruda stood out in his Zionist activism, for he was a Zionist in every fiber of his being. He did all in his power to instill the concept of Zionism among his brethren and to help build up the Land, even though he himself was living far away, in Dobrzyn.

When Yitzhak Moshe Offenbach and Adolph Riesenfeld were officiating as the heads of the Zionist Histadrut[5] in the town, Yosef Chaim Ruda and Yaakov Beilowski, may he live long, served as deputies, together carrying the burden of operations. The two of them were also members of the local committee of Keren HaYesod[6].

Like many other people his age, Chaim was, in his youth, a yeshiva student who studied Torah day and night. Once he grew up he became secular and Zionist, bringing down upon himself the wrath of the ultra–Orthodox. On one occasion they even got up and threw him out of the synagogue. None of this was enough to prevent his extensive activity in support of Zionism, for which he travelled a great deal to Warsaw to attend Zionist conferences and various meetings that were convened in the city.

Ruda practiced what he preached. Under the influence of his relative, Shmuel Zanwil Pozner z.l., a Zionist activist who was well–known in his times (and who immigrated to Israel from Rypin before the war and passed away here), he sent two of his daughters to the Land of Israel. Although he himself longed to come on Aliya, as well, it was not meant to be.

Yosef Chaim Ruda, his wife Rivka, and their daughter Esther Yehudit (Yudka), perished in the Holocaust. So too also his only son, Pinchas, who lived with his wife in the city of Kutno[7], where he worked growing flowers on a farm that belonged to Katriel Isaac. Ruda's oldest daughter, Perl Leah, did not escape this fate, either, even though she immigrated to Vienna several years before the war to acquire property she had inherited from her grandfather, Rabbi Avraham Fuchs, z.l. She stayed there, and when the Germans seized Vienna she was caught and sent to a concentration camp.

Yosef Chaim Ruda's wife, Rivka, managed to escape to Warsaw after undergoing an extremely arduous journey that was the lot of all the refugees who were running away. In her testimony before someone from the Social Department, she related the story of the liquidation of the Dobrzyn community and told about the death of her husband. He, too, had fled with all the others from the town, carrying with him only a single suitcase containing his clothing. The tribulations of the journey and the deathly terror that he had experienced had sapped what little strength he had had left. During their wanderings he and his wife had hid out in a farmer's house, but he had fallen ill there and had never recovered.

The name of Yosef Chaim Ruda, who was among the active leaders of the community of Dobrzyn, is unalterably bound up with the community life of the town. His image and his activities are indelibly imprinted in the minds of those who came from the town; they recall his benevolence and kindness, as well as his great devotion to the Zionist ideal.

 

Yosef Chaim Ruda,
one of the leading Zionists of Dobrzyn
[8]

 


Translator's Footnotes

  1. From My Town: In Memory of the Communities Dobrzyn–Gollob, edited by M. Harpaz, (published by the Dobrzyn–Golub Society, Israel, 1969), pp. 171–173. Return
  2. z.l. is an acronym for “zichrono livracha” = of blessed memory Return
  3. “May he live long” is often appended to the name of a living person who is mentioned in the same sentence as someone who has passed away. Return
  4. “The poor among your people” is a paraphrase of Deut. 15:7, following Babylonian Talmud 71a. Return
  5. Histadrut = Jewish socialist–Zionist party in Poland Return
  6. Keren HaYesod (literally “The Foundation Fund”), a Zionist fund founded in 1920 to support the establishment of a Jewish State in Palestine. See the following Web site (retrieved June, 2014): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Keren_Hayesod Return
  7. Kutno is a city in Poland, located ~100km south of Dobrzyn Return
  8. From p. 172 of reference cited in Footnote 1 Return


 

[Page 176]

R.[1] Ephraim Eliezer Granat (Rimon),
of Blessed Memory

(His Life and Actions)
[2]

by Yaakov Rimon

Translated by Allen Flusberg

My father and teacher[3], Ephraim Eliezer Granat, z.l.[4], was born in the town of Biezun[5], in the province of Plock, Poland, on the 10th of Tevet, 5629 (1869 [sic])[6], to his father, Rabbi Yosef Tzvi, and his mother, Chana Chaya. (He was their twelfth child; his mother was 55 years old when she gave birth to him.) He was educated in the bosom of Torah and Hassidism, but he was also interested in modern Hebrew literature. While he was still young he moved to the town of Dobrzyn on the Dreventz River, where he lived and was active for many years, until he immigrated to the Land of Israel.

Already in his youth he was drawn to Hibbat–Tzion[7], and he joined the Mizrachi movement[8] when it was just getting started. He wished to attract the Hassidim to the religious–Zionist movement and to the redemption of the People and the Land; since he was an author and a poet, he published an article entitled “On Zionism and Hassidism” in the monthly “Hamizrachi”, which was published under the editorship of the author and historian Rabbi Zeev Yavetz[9]. He signed the article Ephraim Eliezer Even–Shayish[10]. He was active in and around Dobrzyn, supporting the settling of the Land of Israel, and he ran a campaign to favor citrons from the Land of Israel and “Carmel–Mizrachi” wine produced in the Land of Israel. He supported the Jewish National Fund in fundraising for the redemption of land from ownership by foreigners in the Land of Israel. On Yom Kippur Eves he would struggle with and fight against the fanatical Hassidim, placing a contribution–bowl in the synagogue for the benefit of the Jewish National Fund; he was persecuted by these fanatical[11] Hassidim because of his Zionism. He established a charity association in Dobryzn, and in addition energized his friends and acquaintances to participate in groups that were dedicated to the study of Talmud or Mishna. He served as a Talmud teacher in Dobrzyn; and since his love for the Hebrew language was boundless, he established a Hebrew library in Dobrzyn. As its administrator, he toiled to bring the young people closer to our national language.

While he was still undergoing persecution by the Hassidic fanatics for his Zionism, his older sister, who was also opposed to Zionism, aligned herself with the fanatics and decided to “sit Shiva”[12] for him on the basis of the rumor that he and his family were preparing to immigrate to the Land of Israel. And not only that, she actually traveled to Otwock to speak to the elderly rebbe[13] of Warka[14], Rebbe Simcha Bunim[15]—may the memory of the righteous be a blessing—and told him about the rumor. The elderly Hassidic leader sent a message to my father, telling him to come to him. When he asked my father his intentions, my father answered: “It is true: we are immigrating to the Holy Land.” The rebbe spoke to my father, who was a beloved follower of his, privately, for many hours. But in the end when my father left the rebbe's study, his face was glowing as he reported, “The rebbe gave me his blessing and even promised to follow me to the Holy Land”…And indeed, since the rebbe did not merit to immigrate to the Land of Israel during his lifetime, he stipulated, before his death, that his body be buried in Tiberias.[16] The Torah scrolls and sacred books that were in the rebbe's house are presently located in the synagogue “Kehal Hassidim” that my father established in the neighborhood of Neve Shalom[17], in Yafo.

In the year 5667 (1907), my father overcame material hardships and immigrated to the Land of Israel. He settled in Batei–Varsha[18] of R. Shaul Fenigstein[19] z.l., and served as a Talmud[20] teacher for R. Shaul's children. After two years, in the year 5669 (1909), my mother, Esther Chava the daughter of R. Yechiel Bunim Elstein, z.l., immigrated and joined him. With her came two of her sons, Yechiel Bunim and Yaakov, may they live long.[21] My sister, Chana Chaya Katcher z.l., the wife of Moshe Yaakov Katcher z.l., remained in Dobrzyn together with her husband and their children; and my brother, the well–known poet R. Yosef Tzvi Rimon z.l., who came before any of us, was already living in Jerusalem at that time.

As stated above, my father settled in Yafo. He and my mother had an agreement that was like that of Issachar and Zebulun: she conducted business and my father studied Torah.[22] My mother had a grocery store, and every day my father would come for an hour or two to do the bookkeeping.

In Neve Shalom that was in Yafo, my father established a Beit–Midrash[23] for Hassidim who had emigrated from Poland. It is in existence to this very day, under the name “Kehal Hassidim”, on Baal Shem Tov Street.[24] Since he was affable and spoke knowledgeably and intelligently, my father became well–liked not only by the Hassidim, but also by the “Perushim[25], and even by the free–thinkers; and many benefited from and were helped by his good advice. Our grocery store became a meeting place for immigrants from Poland, who used to come to my father for guidance just after they arrived in the Land. Among them also were Jews from Dobrzyn who immigrated to the Land at that time. The “Kehal Hassidim” synagogue served as a center for the Polish Hassidim who came on Aliya and settled in Yafo.

My father was also an expert in modern [Hebrew] literature, and he published several articles, lists and poems in the Hebrew newspapers of that period: “Moriah” and “Herut”. In Yafo he initiated the founding of an association for purchasing plots of land to expand Jewish settlement on the basis of mutual aid, and he published a passionate leaflet on this subject.

My father authored four books: (1) Pelach Harimon[26]: interpretations of various place–names that appear in the Bible, Mishna and Talmud; (2) Hadat Vehadaat[27]: questions and answers between a father and his son on the subject of faith and religion; (3) Michteve Tzair Shehizdaken[28]: ideas and thoughts on the revival of Israel and Judaism; and (4) Nachalat Ephraim[29]: a compilation of articles on the subject of religion and faith. I am sorry to say that because of a lack of funds the only one of these books that appeared in print was Nachalat Ephraim, a book describing a father's testament to his son. It was published by Pinchas Ben–Tzvi Grayevsky, Jerusalem; it was widely acclaimed, and the author Eliezer Steinman incorporated three of its chapters in his book Sefer Hamaala, which includes a selection of testaments throughout the generations, up to the present time. Since I feel that because of my impaired vision I will regrettably not be able to do anything with my father's manuscripts, I have transferred them to be preserved for all time in the manuscript department of the Religious–Zionist archives, which is near the Rav Kook Institute in Jerusalem. It is my hope that perhaps these manuscripts will someday see the light of day.

When the World War broke out in the year 5674 (1914), my father and his family were supposed to be deported from the Land as “enemy nationals.” However, my father chose to accept upon himself all the tribulations of the war; he clung to the Land, hoping he would not be wrested away from it. Together with his family he went through the torments of the expulsion from Yafo and suffered for several months in the deportee camp located in Kfar Sava[30], where they lived in open tents built of eucalyptus wood. The main food there was sorghum seeds that are used as poultry feed. Under these harsh, morbid conditions, while he was suffering hunger, my father wrote his book Nachalat Ephraim. The expulsion remained in force, bringing the family to Samaria[31], where my mother passed away during a typhus epidemic on the 1st of Nisan, 5678[32]; she was buried in Zichron Yaakov[33]. My father dedicated his book Michteve Tzair Shehizdaken to her memory. After the expulsion ended my father returned to Yafo, where he fell ill from all the hardships he had experienced. He passed away on the 2nd day of Adar II 5679[34] and was buried in the Old Cemetery[35] on Trumpeldor Street in Tel Aviv.

 

R. Ephraim Eliezer Granat (Rimon) [36]

 

Esther Chava Granat (Rimon) [37]

 

Translator's Footnotes

  1. R. = Reb, an honorific similar to English “Mr.” Return
  2. From My Town: In Memory of the Communities Dobrzyn–Gollob, edited by M. Harpaz, (published by the Dobrzyn–Golub Society, Israel, 1969), pp. 176–179. Return
  3. Here “teacher” (Hebrew: mori) is written as a token of respect to a parent; except for this first occurrence, it has been omitted in the translation. Return
  4. z.l. is an acronym for zichrono livracha (= of blessed memory) Return
  5. Polish spelling: Bieżuń, located ~70km east of Dobrzyn and ~60km north of the city of Plock Return
  6. 10 Tevet 5629 = 24 Dec 1868 (12 Dec 1868 according to the Julian calendar then used by Russia) Return
  7. Hibbat–Tzion = Love of Zion, also known as Hovevei Tzion = Lovers of Zion, Jewish religious groups organized in Eastern Europe in the late 19th century to promote Jewish immigration to the Land of Israel. They are considered the forerunners of the Zionist movement. See the following link (retrieved August, 2015): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hovevei_Zion Return
  8. Mizrachi = the religious Zionist movement and party. See the following link (retrieved August, 2015): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mizrachi_%28religious_Zionism%29 Return
  9. Yavetz (1847–1924) was a prolific writer and historian. See the following link (retrieved August, 2015): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ze'ev_Yavetz Return
  10. Even–Shayish = marble (Hebrew), perhaps an echo of the name Granat (= granite) Return
  11. i.e. zealously anti–Zionist Return
  12. Shiva = seven–day mourning period for an immediate relative who has died Return
  13. Rebbe = religious spiritual leader of a Hassidic group. The Hebrew word Admor used here instead of rebbe is a contraction of Adoneinu Moreinu Verabeinu (= our master, teacher and rabbi), the Hebrew title of a Hassidic spiritual leader. Return
  14. Warka, Poland, is a town located some 300km southeast of Dobrzyn, and about 60km south of Warsaw. A dynasty of Hassidic rebbes, known as Varker or Vurker, originated in this town. Return
  15. Simcha Bunim Kalish (1851–1907), who resided in Otwock, Poland for much of his life and was descended from the Warka (Varka) dynasty of Hassidic rebbes. Return
  16. Other accounts state that in 1905 he immigrated to the Land of Israel unaccompanied, with neither his family nor Hassidic entourage, and that he died in 1907 in Tiberias, Israel, where he was buried. See the following links (retrieved August, 2015): http://www.yivoencyclopedia.org/article.aspx/Vurke_Hasidic_Dynasty; https://he.wikipedia.org/wiki/%D7%A9%D7%9E%D7%97%D7%94_%D7%91%D7%95%D7%A0%D7%99%D7%9D_%D7%A7%D7%90%D7%9C%D7%99%D7%A9 Return
  17. Neve Shalom, established in 1890, was the second neighborhood that was settled by Jews just outside the walls of Yafo (Jaffa). Return
  18. Batei–Varsha (= houses of Warsaw) was a Jewish agricultural settlement established within Yafo in 1871. See next footnote. Return
  19. Shaul Fenigstein, a Ger Hassid who hailed from Varsha ( = Warsaw), was the founder of Batei–Varsha. Return
  20. Here written “g.f.t.”, a Hebrew acronym for Gemara (=Talmud), Perush Rashi (=Rashi's commentary on the Talmud) and Tosafot (additional medieval commentary on the Talmud). Return
  21. “May they live long” is added as a descriptor of living people mentioned together with those who are no longer alive. Yaakov is the author of this article. Return
  22. Issachar and Zebulun were two tribes of ancient Israel that shared a common border. According to the Midrashic interpretation of Gen. 49: 13–15, the tribe of Issachar chose Torah–study as their calling; they were financially supported by the neighboring tribe of Zebulun, who thereby received the same credit as Issachar for the study of Torah (Bereishit Rabba 99:11). Return
  23. Beit–Midrash = study hall (for studying Torah) Return
  24. In the late 1970s the Neve Shalom neighborhood deteriorated and the Kehal Hassidim synagogue was abandoned. Around 2000 it was sold in a public auction by the city of Tel Aviv and was rebuilt by the purchaser as an upscale new home in what had become a gentrified neighborhood. See the following Web site (retrieved August, 2015): http://www.nrg.co.il/online/54/ART2/295/003.html Return
  25. Perushim = members of the non–Hassidic ultra–religious Ashkenazi community of Israel, whose ancestors had arrived from Europe during the 18th and 19th centuries. Members of this group who remained behind in Eastern Europe were known as Mitnagdim (= opponents [of Hassidism]). Return
  26. Pelach Harimon = The Slice of Pomegranate Return
  27. Hadat Vehadaat = Religion and Knowledge Return
  28. Michteve Tzair Shehizdaken = Letters of a Youth who Grew Old Return
  29. Nachalat Ephraim = Inheritance of Ephraim Return
  30. Kfar Sava is located ~20km northeast of Yafo. A Jewish settlement founded in 1898, it was destroyed during World War I in the fighting between the British and Turks. In 1917 about 1000 residents of Tel Aviv and Yafo were brought there as deportees, where they lived in huts made of eucalyptus branches until the British victory of 1918. See the following Web sites (retrieved August 2015): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kfar_Saba#Ottoman_era; https://he.wikipedia.org/wiki/%D7%9B%D7%A4%D7%A8_%D7%A1%D7%91%D7%90#.D7.9E.D7.9C.D7.97.D7.9E.D7.AA_.D7.94.D7.A2.D7.95.D7.9C.D7.9D_.D7.94.D7.A8.D7.90.D7.A9.D7.95.D7.A0.D7.94_.D7.95.D7.A4.D7.A8.D7.A2.D7.95.D7.AA_.D7.AA.D7.A8.D7.A4.22.D7.90 Return
  31. Samaria (Hebrew Shomron) is the mountainous region lying ~50km northeast of Yafo. Return
  32. 1 Nisan 5678 = 14 March 1918 Return
  33. Zichron Yaakov was a Jewish agricultural settlement that had been founded in 1882. It is located near the Mediterranean coast, ~70km north of Yafo. Return
  34. 2 Adar II 5679 = 4 March 1919 Return
  35. For more details on this historic cemetery, see the following Web site (retrieved August 2015): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trumpeldor_Cemetery Return
  36. From p. 177 of reference cited in Footnote 2. Return
  37. From p. 178 of reference cited in Footnote 2. Return


 

[Page 179]

My Dear Mother,
May She Rest in Peace
[1]

by Mendel Sonabend

Translated by Allen Flusberg

My departed mother, the Dobrzyn Rabbanit[2], studied during her youth in the Plock gymnasia[3] together with the future Zionist leader, Nahum Sokolow[4]. She knew four languages well: Yiddish, Hebrew, Polish and German.

She was well educated and quite intelligent; she would always be reading works of Tolstoy, Turgenev, Gorky, Mickiewicz, Heine, Bialik[5] and Peretz[6]. The Dreyfus trial caught her interest, and she followed it on a daily basis, reading in particular the reports by Max Nordau[7]. She was also interested in music and art, to which she dedicated much time.

She ran her household with modesty and good taste; she dressed nicely and properly, and dressed her children well, too. She did not leave concerns for running her household to the housemaid only, but rather gave thought to every detail, like someone who wanted to leave the stamp of her personality on everything. Her esteem and fulfilment came from her husband and children.

No sigh ever crossed her lips; her face always glowed with a loving smile, and nothing was ever lacking in her home. We children wondered where she got it all from, as we knew full well that the salary of the town rabbi was not particularly high.

In spite of our great economic hardship, she did not hesitate to help all who were in need; she was willing to share her last slice of bread with others. I recall how she once stood on a Friday, as the Sabbath was approaching, in front of the candles she had just lit, covering her gleaming eyes with her hands and then passing them over the flames as she blessed the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. And while she was quietly murmuring the words of the blessing, she burst out in heart–rending sobs. At that moment I saw before my eyes a Jewish mother who was asking God for health and success for her family members and for all the Jewish people. I got up on a chair and embraced her; I kissed her and comforted her, saying: “Right away Father will be coming home from the synagogue; he will greet us with the blessing of ‘Shalom Aleichem[8], so please don't let your face show signs of sadness.” Immediately the sadness disappeared, her face lit up, and she stood ready to greet my father.

And indeed at that very moment the door opened. Our father came in with his face shining, cheerfully declaring: “A Good Sabbath! A Good Sabbath!” Two guests came in with him, Russian Jews who were about to cross the border on their way to the United States.[9] My mother hastened to bring the gefilte fish to the table as she labored to make the guests' Sabbath as pleasant as possible.

My father noticed the sadness on the guests' faces. They were probably thinking about their families and were worrying about what would happen to them. My father quickly cheered them up, assuring them that everything would work out well. “Don't worry, fellow Jews, don't worry!” he said over and over. He poured some wine into their cups and toasted them, “Lechaim[10], fellow Jews, lechaim!”

Observing that the guests were wearing light clothing, my mother hurried over to the closet and took out some warm clothing. She gave it to them and wished them a safe trip, saying “Go in peace and arrive in peace!”

This is what my mother the Rabbanit was like, a modest and pure woman, whose heart was devoted to her children, her husband, and to all who were in need or were experiencing difficulties.


Translator's Footnotes

  1. From My Town: In Memory of the Communities Dobrzyn–Gollob, edited by M. Harpaz, (published by the Dobrzyn–Golub Society, Israel, 1969), pp. 179–180. See also the English translation of the Yiddish version of this essay (similar but with some differences) by the same author, on pp. 401–402. Return
  2. Rabbanit = Rabbi's wife (Hebrew) Return
  3. Gymnasia = high school Return
  4. Sokolow (1859–1936) was a Zionist leader and author. See the following link (retrieved June, 2015): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nahum_Sokolow Return
  5. Ch. N. Bialik (1873–1934) was a poet who wrote primarily in Hebrew. See the following link (retrieved July 2015): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hayim_Nahman_Bialik Return
  6. I. L. Peretz (1852–1915) was a Yiddish–language author of fictional stories and plays. See the following link (retrieved July 2015): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/I._L._Peretz Return
  7. Nordau (1849–1923) was a Zionist leader and author. See the following link (retrieved June, 2015): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Max_Nordau#Dreyfus_affair Return
  8. Shalom Aleichem’ = “Welcome, angels of peace…”, A Hebrew poem recited or sung just before the Friday–night Sabbath meal, welcoming the angels who bring with them the tranquility of the Sabbath Return
  9. Until 1920, the border between the Russian and German empires ran along the Dreventz River that separated Dobrzyn (in the Russian Empire) from Golub (in the German Empire). Smuggling people across the river border was common, and this is likely what the border crossing is referring to. See p. 415 of Y. Lipka, “Memoirs Dedicated to My Father”, R. Feibish Lipka, pp. 404–438 of reference cited in Footnote 1; also p. 270 of S. Aleksander, “The Grassroots Jews of Dobrzyn,” pp. 270–272 of reference cited in Footnote 1. Return
  10. Lechaim (Hebrew) = to life, a Hebrew toast Return


 

[Page 189]

Shmuel Zeinwil Lipka

by Minda Lipka Bornstein

Translated by Jerrold Landau

Donated by Steve Bolef

 

 

My late father was born in Dobrzyń. He served as the communal administrator (parnas) and was active in the Chevra Kadisha (burial society). He concerned himself with the Yeshiva students and supported them with his money. His home was open to those passing through the town.

His sons Wolf and Aharon Lipka, as well as his sons-in-law Wolf Szeinbart and Aharon Szlechter continued in the traditions of their father.

His memory will never depart from my heart!

His daughter: Minda Lipka Bornstein

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