“Jonava” - Encyclopedia of Jewish
Communities in Lithuania

55° 05' / 24° 17'

Translation of the “Jonava” chapter from
Pinkas Hakehillot Lita

Written by Dov Levin

Published by Yad Vashem

Published in Jerusalem, 1996


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Barry Mann

 

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This is a translation from: Pinkas Hakehillot Lita: Encyclopedia of Jewish Communities, Lithuania,
Editor: Prof. Dov Levin, Assistant Editor: Josef Rosin, published by Yad Vashem, Jerusalem.


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(Pages 332-338)

Jonava

In Yiddish, Yaneve; in Russian, Yanovo

A city in the Kaunas district.

Written by Josef Rosin

Translated by Shaul Yannai

 

Year General
Population
Jews %
1847 .. 813 ..
1880 3,000 2,500 83
1897 4,993 3,975 80
1923 4,115 2,701 66
1932 .. 2,710 ..
1940 5,000 3,000 60
1959 5,005 10 0.2

Jonava was built along both banks of the Neris River, 30 km northeast of Kaunas. A railway line and a road that passed through Jonava connected the city to almost all other places in Lithuania and its neighboring countries. The earliest known information about Jonava is from the 18th century. The comfortable inland and waterway connections with Kaunas contributed to the city's development. Many artisans settled in Jonava at the beginning of the 19th century. The city became an important commercial and labor center towards the end of the 19th century. In 1864, it received the rights to be a city. During the period of Russian Rule (1795-1915), Jonava was part of the Vilnius gubernia (region) and from 1843 it became part of the Kaunas gubernia. The construction of the railway line between Libau in Latvia and Romny in Ukraine, which passed through Jonava, was completed in 1873. Subsequently, the city's commercial trade, mainly in crops and grains, began to prosper. Trade in lumber also developed during that period, and there were times when 80 rafts loaded with lumber sailed on the river each day. In 1877 there was a great flood which flooded almost the entire city.

During WWI, between 1915 and 1918, Jonava was under German rule. During the period of Independent Lithuania (1919-1940), Jonava had the status of a city with independent rule. Jonava was the center of the furniture industry in Lithuania.

 

The Jewish Settlements Until After World War I

Apparently, Jews settled in Jonava during the second half of the 18th century. In 1775, the village of Skaruliai, which was part of Jonava for many years, had 300 Jews, most of whom were artisans, such as, blacksmiths, fishermen, grocers and raft rowers (who were called in Yiddish “yanover burlakes”).

Jonava's development accelerated quickly with the construction of the St. Petersburg-Berlin railway line, which was completed in 1852. Very much traffic passed through the city and the wagons and carriages that needed repair kept the metalworkers, who were mostly Jews, busy. Jonava had an alley which was called “The Alley of Blacksmiths”. In 1884, 60 estate owners around the city established a cooperative store in Jonava and it competed with the Jewish grocers. In 1893, a big fire broke out in the city, which burned down about 400 houses, many shops that were filled with merchandise, the great Bet Midrash, the common synagogue, the synagogue of the “Hasidim” and the public bath house. During those years, trade in crops, which was mostly in the hands of Jews, declined. The extinction of the forests in the surrounding areas created a crisis and the raft rowers also suffered. When the railway line was constructed, many wagon and carriage owners in the city lost their livelihood. All of those factors and some others caused a downturn in the economic situation of many of the city's Jews during the last quarter of the 19th century. The wealthy people in Jonava established a free kitchen for the city's poor Jews and sold them bread at reduced price. Many people emigrated to the United States and South Africa during the period under discussion.

The economic situation of the Jews improved at the beginning of the 20th century and most of them were able to make a living. The lumber traders and the big crop merchants became especially wealthy: the former again used the Neris River to sail rafts to Prussia, and the latter exported their merchandise by trains. Many Jews made their livelihood in sailing rafts and in loading and unloading merchandise that was transported by trains. As mentioned above, Jonava was the center of Lithuania's furniture production and many artisans who worked in that field became famous throughout the country.

In 1905, another fire broke out in the city and three quarters of the city's houses burned down. However, the city was restored quickly and new, beautiful homes were built on its ruins.

The “Savings and Loans” fund played an important role in the economic lives of the city's Jews. In 1911 it had 519 members.

At the beginning of the 1880's, a “modern” Talmud Torah was established in Jonava. In addition to it, there were dozens of other educational institutions such as the “Heder”. The affluent Jewish girls studied at the Russian school for girls in the city.

The “Hayei Adam” (The Life of Man) society was established in Jonava in 1879. Its members studied Torah studies and “the life of man”. This society built a house for its activities and supported 4-5 Torah students. The “Shas” (Mishna) society was also active in the city. “Bikur Kholim” (visiting the ill), a Jewish welfare institution, provided food and medical aid to ill people who were poor.

Among the Rabbis who served in Jonava were: Rabbi Yehoshua-Heschel Eliashzon: he was born in Jonava (1799-1871) and was a radical oppositionist to the ethical movement of Rabbi Yisrael Salanter; Rabbi Moshe-Arieh HaLevi (served 1874-1892); Rabbi Haim Segal (served from 1892 until his death in 1914).

In 1701, Rabbi Avraham Yanover, who was born in Jonava, traveled to Eretz-Yisrael. He did so almost 200 hundred years before the Zionist movement was established. In 1712, he went there a second time and became one of the leaders of the Ashkenazi community in Jerusalem and acted as an emissary to European countries on its behalf. During that period, Rabbi Simkha Yanover also lived in Jerusalem. He was also a painter and he painted the landscapes of Eretz-Yisrael.

The “Zionist Association” was established in Jonava in 1898. The “Benot Zion” (sisters of Zion) association, headed by Ms. Tsivia-Lea Eisenstadt, was organized in the city during the same year. The lists of donors for Eretz-Yisrael for the years 1898 and 1903, note the names of many people from Jonava. Shmaryahu Stern was the delegate who collected the donations.

In 1912, Avraham Mordekhai Rozenson (Raziel) emigrated to Eretz-Yisrael. Subsequently, he became a teacher at the “Takhkemoni” school in Tel Aviv. He was the father of David Raziel, who later became the leader of “EZEL” (The Irgun - “National Military Organization in the Land of Israel”), and of Ester Raziel-Naor, who was a member of the Knesset on behalf of the “Kherut Movement” (freedom movement).

At the end of the 18th century and at the beginning of the 19th century, the “Bund” had great influence on the Jews of Jovana, in particular on its many Jewish workers. The local branch, which was subservient to the central office in Kaunas, was well organized and acted in many ways to improve the working conditions of the city's Jewish workers. During WWI, in July 1915, the commander of the Russian army ordered to expulsion of the Jews of Jonava to the interior of Russia. In contrast to what happened in other places in the Kaunas province, the local military commander acted fairly towards the Jews and offered to store their belongings and merchandise in warehouses that would be guarded by the police.

During the period of German occupation (1915-1918), some of the Jews who fled to the Vilnius region began returning to the city. When they returned, they discovered that many of their homes were occupied by the German army, who turned their houses into horse barns. The occupying authorities nominated Haim Levin to be the mayor and provided him with a Jewish police. Jonava was not damaged during the war.

 

During the Period of Independent Lithuania

Society and Economy

The economic and public life in the city was revived when Independent Lithuania was established and when the authorities declared equal civil and national rights to Jews. Some of those who were expelled to Russia returned to Jonava. During this period, the percentage of Jews among the general population in the city decreased from 80% before the war to 60%-66%. The Jews restored their houses and businesses by means of financial aid that their relatives sent them from abroad.

In accordance with the law of autonomy for the Jews, a ruling community committee of 15 members was elected in Jonava: 4 from the laborers list, 4 from “Akhdut” (Agudat Yisrael), 2 from “Tzeirei Zion”, 1 from the General Zionists, 1 from “HaMizrakhi”, 1 from the artisans, and 1 nonpartisan. The committee was active in most areas of Jewish life from 1919 until February 1926 city by engaging several sub-committees. When the community committee was liquidated, its functions were divided between two organizations: “Ezra” (aid) and “Adat Yisrael”.

In October, 1922, 846 Jews voted in the elections for the first Lithuanian Seimas. The Zionist party received 442 votes, the “Folkspartei” 34 votes, and “Akhdut” 364 votes.

In the1924 municipal committee elections, 9 of the 12 elected committee members were Jews. Haim Levin was elected as mayor; the representative to the district committee was also a Jew. In the 1931 elections, 6 of the 9 elected committee members were Jews (M. Goldshmit, M. Teitelbaum, L. Volfovitz, H. Cohen, M. Kolivianski, R. Bomash). In the 1934 elections, again 6 of the 9 elected committee members were Jews (Y. Epstein, D. Pogirski, H. Regen, Dr. Bomash, R. Teitelbaum, S. Bankvecher). A Jew held the office of deputy mayor during those years. The volunteer members of the fire fighters' brigade were all Jews.

Jews played an important role in the economic life of the city. They engaged in commerce, labor and light industry. The city's furniture industry was known throughout Lithuania and abroad, and employed about 600 workers. During the autumn of 1913, the Jewish carpenters went on strike, demanding a salary raise. The strike lasted more than a month. Hundreds of Jews were employed at factories that produced wooden tiles and matches, at sawmills, at 4 flourmills, and at factories that produced beverages and candy.

According to the 1931 Lithuanian government census, Jonava had 74 shops; 67 of them (90%) were owned by Jews. The division into business branches is shown in the table below:

Branch or Type of Business Total Owned
by Jews
Grocery 8 8
Crops and flax 6 6
Butcher shops and cattle 6 4
Restaurants and taverns 6 6
Commerce in food products 5 5
Clothing, furs and textile products 12 11
Leather and shoes 8 7
Sewing and house utensils 6 6
Medicine and cosmetics 2 2
Radios, bicycles and sewing machines 1 1
Tools and iron products 2 2
Wood and heating materials 3 3
Machinery and inland transportation 1 1
Paper, books and writing materials 1 0
Miscellaneous 7 5

 

According to the same census, Jonava had 116 light industry factories; 103 of them (89%) were owned by Jews. The division into braches is shown in the table below:

Branch or Type of Business Total Owned
by Jews
Metal, machinery, iron shops, metal working, power stations 17 17
Headstones, glass, bricks, cement products 2 2
Chemical industry: ethyl, soap, oil, cosmetics 2 1
Textile: wool, flax, spinning mill, coloring 9 8
Wood industry: sawmills, furniture, tar production 49 40
Food industry: mills, bakeries, candy and chocolate, sausage, sugar 14 12
Clothing and footwear: sewing, furs, hats, shoes 12 12
Leather industry: production, leather workshops, barbers, hog bristles processing 4 4
Photography shops, goldsmiths 7 7

 

In 1937, there were 198 Jewish artisans in Jonava: 37 tailors, 27 carpenters, 27 shoemakers, 21 blacksmiths, 12 barbers, 10 bakers, 10 butchers, 5 tinsmiths, 4 “Tapars” “ (Hebrew, “tapar”, which refers to “a craftsman in shoemaking who makes the uppers”), 4 leather workers, 4 hat makers, 4 wood carvers, 3 intestine cleaners, 3 watch makers, 2 oven makers, 2 painters, 2 who made boots from felt, a binder, a rope weaver, a photographer, and 9 others. In addition to the above, there were many porters, stonemasons, raft rowers and people without a specific profession who were ready to work in anything in order to make a living. Most of the artisans were organized in a union that provided its members with social and other types of aid. The union also had a “Kupat Kholim” (infirmary), which provided medical aid at a 50% discount. The artisans, together with the Union of Jewish Fighters for the Independence of Lithuania, had their own club. In 1939, this union had 176 members. When Klaipeda (Memel) was disconnected from Lithuania in that year, the conditions of many of the city's artisans deteriorated because most of their livelihood came from that city. The sons of the former carriage drivers became bus owners or bus drivers.

Jonava had 2 Jewish doctors (out of 3), 2 dentists, and 2 midwives.

Dozens of Jewish families who engaged in agriculture lived in the villages around Jonava.

The Jewish national bank (Folksbank) was established in Jonava in 1920 with 122 members. In 1922, the bank had about 400 members of the 500 Jewish families who at that time lived in the city. In 1927 it had 562 members, and in 1929, 573, of which 231 were artisans. The bank played an important role in the economic life of the city's Jews. Jonava also had a branch of the United Credit Union for Jewish Farmers whose center was located in Kaunas.

In 1939, Jonava had 115 telephones. 60 of them were owned by Jews.

In comparison with other towns in Lithuania, Jonava enjoyed prosperity before Independent Lithuania was established. Its Jews made a good living and gained social recognition. A distinct type of workmen crystallized in Jonava: muscular men who made their living with their own bare hands, and who also knew how to react at the proper time against rioters who wanted to harm Jews. However, during the 1930's Lithuania went through an economic crisis; anti-Semitism increased and the open propaganda not to buy from Jews strengthened. As a result, the conditions for many Jews worsened. In October, 1935, a fire broke out in Jonava. Many Jewish homes burned down and there was heavy damage.

 

Education and Culture

The Jewish children studied in 3 elementary schools: the Hebrew school that was part of the “Tarbut” network (established in 1918 and was located in the “Ezra” association building); the Hebrew Religious School of the “Yavne” network, which had its own splendid building and was built through the initiative of Rabbi H. Silman; and the Yiddish school that operated in a rented apartment. Plays and receptions also took place in the schools. Altogether about 1000 students studied in those schools. Some of their graduates continued their education in Hebrew Gymnasias and government universities in Kaunas. A few Jewish children also studied in the Lithuanian school in Jonava. The city also had a Hebrew kindergarten and from 1939 it also had a Yiddish kindergarten.

Jonava had 3 Jewish libraries: one was established by “Tzeirei Zion” and had 4,000 books, mostly in Hebrew and some in Yiddish; the library of “The Seekers of Knowledge” with about the same number of books; and a smaller library next to the “Yavne” school. Jonava also had an amateur drama group, a choir and an orchestra (the conductor was S. Meirovitz).

 

Zionist and other Public Activities

Many of Jonava's Jews belonged to the Zionist camp. Most of the Zionist parties were represented in the city and they each had their own club. The Eretz-Yisrael HaOveded” club was especially active. “Agudat Yisrael” was also active in the city. Among the Zionist Youth Organizations in the city were: “HaShomer HaTzair”, the “HeKhalutz Common Zionist”, “Beytar”, “Gordonia”, “Bnei Akiva” and others.

In view of the fact that Jonava was a city that offered many opportunities to learn a profession, the “HeKhalutz” central office decided to bring to the city groups of Khalutzim (pioneers). The Zionist youth initiated there the “Bet HeKhalutz”, which served as a transit station to Khalutzim, and as a center for activities and the cultivation of the values of the Labor movement in Eretz-Yisrael.

Half of the members of the first “HeKhalutz” group, “Akhva” (fraternity), were Jonava natives. This group emigrated to Eretz-Yisrael after WWI and participated in settling Eretz-Yisrael in various parts of the country. Subsequently, many of Jonava's youth emigrated to Eretz-Yisrael. Some of them were the founders of Kibbutz Givat Brener. During the 1930's, the “Brit HaKanaim” (the youth movement of the Grossmanists' Zionist Movement) organized its own training program in Jonava. Quite a few families from Jonava emigrated to Eretz-Yisrael during the period under discussion. Some of them returned to Jonava and perished in the Holocaust. The division of votes to the Zionist Congresses in Jonava is shown in the table below:

Congress
Nr.
Year Total
Shekalim
Total
Voters
Labor
Part
Revisionists General
Zionists
Grosmanists Mizrachi
Z”S Z”Z A B
15 1927 166 140 26 28 32 46 - - 8
16 1929 537 301 67 51 116 48 - - 19
17 1931 320 228 95 46 16 55 - - 16
18 1933 .. 807 523 151 42 - 33 58
19 1935 1,076 976 621 - 50 53 136 116

 

The “Maccabi” branch, which had 135 members, had soccer and gymnastics teams and a drama club. “HaPoel” had a soccer team, gymnastics teams for boys and girls, a volleyball team, and a basketball team. In 1938, Jonava hosted a regional convention of the “HaPoel”.

 

Religion and Welfare

The religious life in Jonava concentrated around the 7 prayer house: the big synagogue, the big Bet Midrash, the New Bet Midrash, the Kloiz (prayer house) of the peddlers, the Kloiz of the stonemasons, the Chabad “Shtibel”, the Bet Midrash of “Tiferet Bakhurim”. Besides those, the various artisans had their own small prayer houses, where dozens of Shas, Mishna, “Hayei Adam”, interpreters of Tehilim and so on, were active.

The Rabbis who served in Jonava during that period were: Rabbi Haim Yitzhak Silman (from 1918 until his death in 1930); Rabbi Nakhum-Barukh Ginsburg (served 1930-1931), who was a member of the “Yavne” central office and the last president of the Committee of Rabbis of Lithuania. He was murdered by Lithuanians during the Holocaust.

The two aid and welfare associations, “Ezra” and “Adat Yisrael”, supported a whole range of welfare institutions in the city. The “Ezra” association was also responsible for paying the Rabbi. The Jewish hospital, which began its services with 10 beds, was partly supported by the “Adat Yisrael” association. In 1932, the hospital moved to its own building. An infirmary functioned next to the hospital. The “Adat Yisrael” association also had a public bath house, a “Home for Guests” and a slaughterhouse, which also served the Lithuanian butchers. In addition to those, there were societies such as “Maot Khitim” (money for flour for Passover), “Hakhnast Kala”, and others.

Jonava is the birthplace of Rabbi Avraham-Aba Shlomovitz (1852-1906); Avraham Meirson (1881-1948), who later became a professor of neurology at Harvard University; David Cohen (1901-1941), a painter who perished in ghetto Kaunas; the poet Morris Vinchevski (1856-1932), who published books on social affairs in Hebrew and Yiddish; Dr. Yisrael Davidson (1870-1939), professor of Medieval Literature at the Theological Seminary in New York; Dr. Avraham-Shlomo Valdstein (1874-1932), who wrote on social matters in Hebrew, Yiddish and English and composed an English-Hebrew and Hebrew-English dictionary (passed away in Jerusalem); Natan Yonesevitz (1892-1941), was the secretary of the Kaunas community, one of the founders of the Kaunas Jewish Museum (perished in ghetto Kaunas); Dov Zisle (Gazit, 1897-1960), was a teacher and educator, published a book on “The History of Agricultural Settlements in Eretz-Yisrael”; Noakh Stern (1912-1960), was a poet and translator (passed away in Israel); Yeshayahu Kolivianski (1892-1970), was a member of the “Tarbut” central office and one of the founders of “Di Yiddishe Shtime”, and the manager of “Keren HaYesod” in Lithuania. He was murdered together with his wife and son by Lithuanians during the pogrom of June, 1941in Slobodka; Yehuda Zupovitz, was the deputy commander of the police in ghetto Kaunas, a member of the underground who trained how to use arms those who left the ghetto to join the partisans, and was murdered by the Nazis. The agronomist Khone Kagan, was one of the activists in ghetto Kaunas and a partisan.

 

During World War II and Afterwards

At the end of 1939, after the Germans conquered Poland, Lithuania absorbed a huge flood of Jewish refugees. An entire Yeshiva from the city of Kletsk settled in Jonava. Its students and Rabbis were warmly received and supported by Jonava's Jewish population. In 1940, when Lithuania was annexed by the Soviet Union, it became a Soviet Republic. The factories and shops in the city, most of which belonged to Jews, were nationalized. All the Zionist parties and youth organizations were disbanded. The Hebrew educational institutions were shut down. The supply of goods decreased and prices skyrocketed as a result. The middle class, composed mostly of Jews, suffered a severe setback and its standard of living declined more and more. In the middle of June, 1941, a few dozen of the city's Jews, who the authorities regarded as “unreliable elements”, were expelled to Siberia. Among them were merchants whose businesses were nationalized, members of “Beytar” and others. Only a few of them survived.

On June 22, 1941, the day Germany invaded the Soviet Union, a Lithuanian shoemaker murdered the Jewish deputy mayor of the city. He murdered him with an iron rod. During the second day of the war, a critical battle between units of the Russian army and the German army took place near Jonava. The city was heavily bombarded and almost burned down completely. One of the bombs hit a cellar where 70 Jews were hiding, and they all perished. Many Jews tried to flee to the Soviet Union, but only a few succeeded because the roads were blocked by the retreating units of the Soviet military and the thousands of refugees who followed in their footsteps. The German planes bombed the people who were fleeing and many were killed.

On June 26, immediately after the Germans conquered Jonava, the local SS headquarters ordered all the Jews to assemble in the city square. The Lithuanian auxiliary police, who got organized even before the Germans entered city, raided the homes of the surviving Jews and forced them, while beating them up, to leave their homes. The evacuated homes, the synagogues and the “Tarbut” school, were all looted. All of the Jews, together with Rabbi Ginsburg, were forced to kneel on their knees in the city square. Lithuanians with machine guns stood around them; apparently, they intended to carry a mass slaughter. But suddenly a bomb fell on the movie theater that was nearby and everyone fled in panic.

The next day, the teacher, Shaul Keydanski, his two sons, and M. Fleishman, were shot to death by a German after a young Lithuanian woman reported that they are communists. The four were buried in the yards of their homes.

On June 29, about 50 young and strong Jewish men were concentrated into one cellar. Heavily guarded, they were taken daily to the Girele Park, about 1.5 km northeast of the city, where they were forced to dig trenches. Later on, these young men were shot and buried in those same trenches.

During the month of July, the Jews were forced to do all kinds of humiliating work, and throughout that time, as they were being tortured, they had to “perform” for the amusement of the Lithuanian public; the Jews had their beards cut and torn off, and were forced to sing Russian songs and so on.

On August 15, all Jewish men above the age of 14 and all Jews who worked for the farmers in the villages were concentrated in barracks. The Lithuanians ordered them to choose 3 representatives who were to raise a “contribution” of 150,000 rubles. The Jews did not comply with that order. As a result, the Lithuanians themselves selected the representatives who were: Rabbi Ginsburg, the pharmacist, Kagan, and Moshe Sach. They were told that if they did not want to be expelled, they needed to pay a ransom in gold, jewelry and paper money. Although the Jews managed to collect a large sum of money and gold, they were unable to meet what the Lithuanians demanded. The Lithuanians offered the Rabbi and his friends to go to Kaunas and ask the Jews there to collect the missing sum. The delegation went to Kaunas while being guarded by Lithuanians. The missing sum was collected with the intercession of the Rabbi of Kaunas, Rabbi A.D. Shapira. A different version of this episode claimed that the Lithuanians demanded 100,000 rubles and in Kaunas the Rabbi was advised not to pay the killers the “contribution”.

On August 21 and 22, armed Lithuanians, while being supervised by the Germans, removed the men from the barracks. They were the led to Girele Park while they were beaten with whips. The weak and the elderly were transported by carts. At the pits which were prepared in advance, they were all forced to take off their upper clothes and then were murdered. The women who remained in the city were told that the men were transferred to the ghetto. A few Jews managed to escape from the massacre, but they caught by Lithuanians and were also murdered.

On the same day, the women and children were taken by foot and on carts to the barracks; each woman was allowed to take one small bundle. The women and the children spent that night in the barracks and the following morning, on August 23, 1941, they were all taken out of the barracks and were told that they would be taken to the ghetto, to where the men were. In fact, they were taken to the same grove where the men were murdered and they were murdered in the pits that were ready for them. Later on, the commander of the Lithuanian police announced that all Jews who were hiding in the villages or were working on farms must come to Jonava, from where they would be transported to ghetto Kaunas. On October 22, 1941, 208 Jews were loaded on wagons and admitted to ghetto Kaunas. Most of them were murdered in the “Big Aktion” that took place in ghetto Kaunas on October 28. Of the entire group, only one man and 3 women saw the day of liberation, after going through all the miseries and hardships in ghetto Kaunas and in various camps.

According to Soviet sources, 2,108 men, women and children were murdered at Girele. The names of the Lithuanian murderers are kept in the Yad Vashem archives. And not to mention them in the same breath, the names of the Lithuanians who risked their lives and hid Jews, are also kept in the Yad Vashem archives.

A few of the Jews who succeeded in escaping to the Soviet Union fought in the ranks of the Lithuanian Division within the Red Army. A few Jews who escaped from ghetto Kaunas fought among the ranks of the partisans.

An investigation committee on behalf of the Soviet Rule in Lithuania discovered 7 pits at the murder site: 3 of them are 50 meters long and 6 meters wide; and 4 are smaller pits, 25 meters long and 5-6 meters wide. The depths of all the pits are 3-4 meters. Towards the end of the war, the Germans ordered the removal of some of the corpses from the pits and the burning of them. The ashes were returned to the pits.

After the war, a memorial with an inscription in Lithuanian and Yiddish was erected on the mass graves. A memorial tablet for the Jews of Jonava was installed in the Chamber of the Holocaust in Jerusalem.

At the beginning of the 1990's, a memorial was erected near the mass graves and on it an inscription in Hebrew, Yiddish and Lithuanian: “At this place, the Nazi murderers and their local collaborators, murdered in 1941 2,100 Jewish children, women and men.” At the same time, a memorial was erected in the old Jewish cemetery of the Jonava community and on it an inscription in Hebrew, Yiddish and Lithuanian: “The old cemetery. May the memory of the martyrs live forever ”.

After the war, a few Jews settled in Jonava. Among them were those who emigrated from Russia. In 1959, there were 10 Jews in the city; in 1970, 14; in 1979, 12; and in 1989, 10.

Bibliography:

Yad Vashem Archives, Jerusalem, M-1/Q-2511/663; M-1/E-1399/1345, 1404/1358; M-9/15(6); 2072/1867; Koniukhovsky Collection 0-71, files 141, 142.
Central Zionist Archives, Jerusalem, files 55/1788, 55/1701, 13/15/131, Z-4/2548.
YIVO - Lithuanian Communities' Collection: files 478-506, 1387, 1521, 1666, pp. 20976-22126, 63738.
Noy, Shimon and Burstein, Yitzhak (editors), Jonava On The Banks Of The Vylia, Tel Aviv 1972.
Kamzon, The Jews of Lithuania, pp. 104, 111.
Unzer Weg (Kaunas), 5.3.1926, 28.2.1930.
Jewish Life (Kaunas-Telez), 15.4.1938.
Einikait (New York), November 1947.
Dos Vort - (Kaunas) - 17.2.1934, 10.11.1934, 25.10.1935, 27.10.1935, 22.1.1939.
Dos Naie Vort (Kaunas), 21.6.1934.
Di Yiddishe Shtime [The Jewish Voice] – (Kaunas), 29.10.1924, 12.6.1930, 17.6.1930, 24.3.1931, 19.6.1931, 6.11.1931, 25.2.1932, 25.10.1932, 11.6.1933, 27.10.1935, 5.10.1937.
Di Zeit (Siauliai), 14.5.1924.
Dar Yiddisher Kooperater [Jewish Cooperation] (Kaunas), # 2-3, 1922, #8-9, 1929.
Hamelitz [The Advocate] – (St. Petersburg), 4.2.1879, 11.3.1879, 17.6.1879, 22.4.1880, 4.5.1880, 22.3.1881, 12.7.1881, 7.12.1883, 28.1.1884, 25.4.1884, 21.1.1891, 5.3.1891, 6.3.1891, 19.8.1891, 18.4.1893, 5.5.1894.
Der Yiddisher Handwerker (Kaunas), # 16.
Folksblat [The People's Newspaper] – (Kaunas), 10.7.1930, 11.7.1930, 19.6.1933, 21.8.1935, 11.1.1939, 12.1.1939, 15.1.1939, 1.2.1939.
Jonava (A local newspaper in Jonava) 7.6.1991, 12.6.1991, 14.6.1991.
Kauno Tiesa (Kaunas), 28.8.1991.

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