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[Page 167]

Jewish Sport in Bukovina

by Dr. Heinrich Rubel (Tel-Aviv)

Translated by Jerome Silverbush

Around the turn of the XIX century, Max Nordau, the powerfully speaking advocate for the Jewish people coined the phrase “muscle Judaism,” which enflamed the hearts of Jewish youth with wild enthusiasm. In all Jewish centers of the world, “Blue-White” hiking clubs formed which developed later into Jewish sports associations that mostly received the name “Maccabi” and which had the goals of refuting the fairytale of Jewish physical inferiority and teaching Jewish youth to strengthen their physical and moral powers. Also, the Maccabi World Organization with its headquarters in London (latter, Paris) was founded which laid down the fundamental ground rules for the Maccabi movement which clearly showed the difference between the efforts of the Jewish sports associations and those of all other nations. Sport for the Jewish youth is not an end in itself, but a means to a goal. High performance is certainly worth striving for, but it is not the only goal. Jewish youth must never forget that our people have survived to the present day, not thanks to the strength of its bodies, but first of all to the strength of its intellect. For that reason, hand in hand with physical training, their minds must also be nurtured to familiarize them with the principals of the Zionist movement and to prepare them for Eretz Israel (the land of Israel).

Nordau's ideas were also received enthusiastically in Bukovina. In 1908 at the initiative of the student Marem Somer, who had excellent organizing talent and was a fantastic friend of Jewish youth, the hiking club “Blue-White” was founded which had the students Markus Krämer, Adolf Reisner, Leon Schmelzer, Wolf Schmelzer, Miseles, Noe, Hessing, Siegfried Baltinester, Morgenstern, Wilhelm Kligler, Adolf König, Lazar Ruff, Bernhard Mück, Wolf Bittman-Sternberg among others as founders and active members.

The “Blue-White” was formed on the pattern of the German “Blue White.” Camp life, field and mountain hikes, education of the members in first aid, knowledge of the land, map reading and terrain study went hand-in-hand with the intellectual efforts of the club. The members were instructed in Jewish history and knowledge of Palestine and Zionism. The “Blue White” made uncounted hikes in the Bukovina mountains and its members accumulated a thorough knowledge of the local trails and topography which astounded the native residents and sometimes aroused their jealousy.

The hiking club “Blue White” was the predecessor of the “Maccabi” founded in 1910 in Czernowitz.

The first president was Prof. Dr. Neuman Wender. The first sections were hiking, gymnastics and soccer. At that time there were no playing fields in Czernowitz and the games were played on the Horeczaer meadow or in the yard of the Goetz saw mill with no fee for spectators. The soccer division stared in 1911with the following members, who can be considered pioneers of this sport: Hirsch, Siegmund Reder, Jusiu Reder, Ungar, Lazar Schajowicz, Bernhard Sandmann, Abramowicz, Bittmann-Sternberg, Landmann, Willig, J. Perl, Lutinger. The gymnastics division practiced in the gymnasium of the “Allgemeinen Turnvereinen (gymnastic association)” on Josefsgasse.

With the beginning of World War I (1914), the activity of the Maccabi was interrupted and taken up again in 1918. The presidency of the Association was taken over by Dr. Marem Somer who handled the lion's share of the arrangements for the memorable sports festival that took place on the property of the Goetz sawmill watched by several thousand enthusiastic paying spectators (1919). When Dr. Marem Somer moved to Vienna in the summer of 1920 Dr. Josef Bierer was elected president and was followed in 1922 by Engineer Michael Schindler. With Engineer M. Schindler's accession to the presidency, began an era of steady growth of Maccabi Czernowitz. Schindler belonged to the Jewish national academic association “Kadimah” in Vienna where he had many sword fights with anti-Semitic students. From Vienna, he brought nationalism, glowing Zionism and fanatic love for Jewish youth and an extraordinary talent for organization. He had made it a principal to spread the unvarnished Maccabi message to the Jewish youth and in carrying out this task he knew no compromise. Jewish youth must participate in athletics, but they must also be prepared for Eretz Israel. Zionist principals must take deep root in the hearts of the Jewish youth. This is what he proposed and this is what he carried through. This program which found its outward expression through the adoption of the “Basler Program” in the statutes of the Association lifted Maccabi Czernowitz high above the level of a mere association and gave its activities the character of a true youth movement. Only so can one explain the extraordinary popularity, achieved by no other sports or cultural organization that the Czernowitz Maccabi enjoyed in all strata of the population in the city and the land. The educational work of the Maccabi leader can be thanked for the fact that
so many youth of Maccabi Czernowitz found their way to Eretz Israel and settled here.

Immediately after taking over the presidency Schindler proposed the idea of creating their own sports field. The chairman and the members of the Sports Council undertook a generous advertising and collection effort in all strata of the Jewish population. The lodge “B'nai B'rith” and its members contributed significant sums and after only 2 years the first Jewish sports field of Greater Romania was turned over to the Jewish youth in Czernowitz. The dedication celebration was managed by Chief Rabbi Dr. Josef Rosenfeld who in a fiery speech inspired the gathered Jewish youth to work for the national and Zionist ideas. The following members of the board of directors worked especially hard for the success of the endeavor: Engineer M. Schindler, Dr. Heinrich Rubel, Engineer Samuel Platzmann and general secretary of the Association Alexander Langberg. The following members of the Sports Council also contributed to the success: Engineer Jerome Baltinester, Karl Bernstein, Wilhelm Kligler, Dr. Siegmund Last, Jakob Rubel, Emanuel Ebner, Mendel Nerlinger, teacher Geller.

Having their own sports field made it possible for the youth to have the full and complete athletic experience. The sections, especially the gymnastics and light athletics section as well as the soccer section had opportunities to develop themselves with systematic training and used these opportunities to good advantage. It didn't take long and they achieved excellent results in the official competitions and fights for the championships in the various disciplines. At Schindler's urging, a strong delegation from Czernowitz Maccabi was sent to the first Maccabiade in Tel-Aviv in 1932.

Schindler worked together with the Sports Council to do the preparatory work for the sport contests in Prague (1934). In 1935, Engineer Schindler together with Dr. Heinrich Rubel, Karl Fränkel, Karl Bernstein and the member of the Maccabi World Federation General Council Max R. v. Anhauch, traveled with the youth group of Maccabi Czernowitz to Maccabiade II in Tel-Aviv. At both Maccabiades, the exactly executed routines of the gymnasts excited general admiration. Around this time, the Nazi movement began to spread in Europe and effected in a rather strong way the activities of Maccabi Czernowitz. When the Russians advanced into North Bukovina in 1940 and occupied the city of Czernowitz, the activity of all organizations including the sports associations was forbidden. With that, the activity of Maccabi Czernowitz ceased in 1940. After the city was retaken by the Romanian army in 1941, Schindler remained for several years in Czernowitz and finally had an opportunity in 1944 to fulfill his fondest wish, that of living in Eretz Israel. He was not, however able to enjoy his happiness for long. A treacherous illness whose seed he had caught in Czernowitz put him into the sickbed from which he never arose. He died on September 29, 1945 in his 60 year of life and was put to his eternal rest in the cemetery of Nachlat Jitzchak.

Leaders of Jewish Sport in Bukovina

Dr. Marem Somer still belonged to the hiking club Blue-White as founder (1908) and in 1910 was one of the initiators and founders of the Czernowitz Maccabi. After World War I, Dr. Somer was president of the Maccabi for a short while and in 1920 he moved to Vienna and from there to New York where he holds a respected position today.

In 1920 Dr. Marem Somer because of his valuable service to the Jewish sports movement in Bukovina was made honorary president.

After the departure of Dr. Somer, Dr. Josef Bierer was chosen as president, but after a short period of activity he stepped down since he was heavily occupied as president of Safa Iwria. Dr. Bierer, during his time in office and also afterwards had proved himself a warm friend of Jewish youth and always worked to help realize the goal of the Maccabi movement. Because of his support of the Maccabi movement, Dr. Bierer was made an honorary president.

Dr. Leon Schmelzer had played a leading roll in “Blue-White,” the predecessor of Maccabi and was vice president in charge of business during the era of Dr. Wender as well as during the short service of Dr. Somer and also under Engineer Schindler. When Dr. Schmelzer became vice president of the State Zionist Organization of Bukovina, he stepped down from the steering committee of Maccabi but remained a true friend of the Association to which he gladly offered the benefit of his long years of experience in all branches of athletics. As an active athlete, he led the hiking and mountain sections until 1938. Many athletes living in Israel owe their leader's badges to this active athlete who led individual groups of the Maccabi into the mountains of the homeland in the Carpathians and in the Alps.

Dr. Schmelzer founded the Maccabi National Association in Iasi in 1921. He had the honor of being the first president of this organization and as vice presidents Weissberg (Iasi) and Tumarkin (Belz) were elected. The secretary was Vainberg-Verea (Bucharest). He was followed by Engineer Levi, Kalmanovici and Lawyer Vainberg-Vera who held the presidency until the organization was dissolved. Dr. Schmelzer today finds himself in a respected position in Keren Kajemet in Jerusalem.

Dr. Siegmund Last was among the leadership of Maccabi during the era of Dr. Somer and for several years in the era of Engineer Schindler. He was one of the best advocates for the Maccabi idea and took and active part in all the efforts of the Association.

Lawyer Dr. Heinrich Rubel held the position of vice president for business from 1921 continuously until the end of activity in 1940 and fought side by side with Engineer Schindler for the spread of the Maccabi idea among the ranks of the Jewish youth. Dr. Rubel directed the sections and he was responsible for representing the Association to the administrative and sports officials as well as maintaining contacts with all Maccabi Associations. He helped found Maccabi associations in Bukovina and Bessarabia and where they already existed, he facilitated their joining with the Maccabi World Organization. He was among the most active agitators for the building of the Maccabi stadium in Czernowitz and led the propaganda section for the Maccabi Games Festival in Prague (1934). For several years, Dr. Rubel was a member of the highest sports council in Bukovina (Comitetul Regional Bucovinean). It is clear proof for the respect that Maccabi Czernowitz enjoyed among the non-Jewish sports organizations, that in the General Congress of the sports organizations in 1931, Dr. Rubel was unanimously elected as president of the Soccer Commission, the most important office in the sports hierarchy. As a lawyer, his chief concern was representing the Association in the courts. Any contracts associated with obtaining their own sports field were examined by him and he represented the Association in a whole series of civil and criminal processes related to the collapse of the Maccabi bleachers in 1938. For many years he was a member of the party council of the State Zionist Organization. He also wrote the sports column for the “East Jewish Newspaper.”

Engineer Samuel Platzmann, building commissioner of the City Council of Czernowitz was vice president of the Association from 1921 until 1926 and he laid out the plans for the sports field and did all the construction work gratis. He was actively involved in the educational work of the organization.

Engineer Jerome Baltinester, Schindler's intimate friend was vice president for several years and then member of the Sports Council until activity was discontinued. In 1940 he was sent with his family to Siberia where he died a miserable death.

Alexander Langberg was general secretary of the Association from 1921 continuously until the cessation of activity. His achievements were especially great during the construction of the sports field and he was in charge of the sections. In 1940 he was sent by the Russians to Siberia where he died from hunger and cold.

Karl Fränkel was elected vice president in 1926 and held this office with dignity until the Association's activity was stopped in 1940. He was in charge of the various sections in which he, himself an active Zionist was responsible for enthusiastically spreading the Zionist idea. He was a member of the academic association, “Emunah,” and the Keren Kajemet State Commission as well as the party council of the Bukovina Zionist State Organization. In the Sports Council of the Maccabi, his opinion was often decisive when the Association had to take a position in difficult situations. At the Maccabi Games in Prague (1934) and in the second Maccabiade in Tel Aviv (1935), Fränkel was part of the leading circle of the Bukovina Maccabi organization. Fränkel has been in Israel since 1950.

Karl Bernstein was a member of the Sports Council from 1919 until activity ceased. For many years, he was administrative leader of the gymnastics section where he mainly devoted his attention to spreading Zionist thoughts in the ranks of the youth. As Keren Kajemet (Jewish National Fund) Commissar, he, along with his wife Fanny (“Buxi”), the leader for many years of the woman's section educated the youth to work actively for the National Fund. He was also for many years, a member of the Party Council of the State Zionist Organization and led the first and only Hachschara (preparation for life on a kibbutz) arranged by Maccabi Czernowitz in Kimpolung. Bernstein was also gymnastics official of the Romanian circle of the Maccabi World Organization and played an important part in the action for the founding of Kfar Hamakkabi (a kibbutz) effectively supported by Moshe Friedmann, the liaison person between Keren Kajemet and Maccabi.

Emanual Ebner belonged to the Sports Council since the founding of the Association and was an enthusiastic fellow worker in all sections, especially in the gymnastics and soccer sections. He was also a valued worker in the administrative leadership of the Maccabi Hachschara in Kimpolung.

Moreover, the members of the Sports Council worked splendidly to spread the Maccabi idea: Muziu Tuchmann, Kamillo Hornik, N. Gritzman, Chaja Landman-Gritzman, Fanny Buxbaum-Bernstein, Mendel Nerlinger, Julius Kamil, Poldi Sussmann, Wilhelm Kligler, Dr. E. Flor, Mendel Stein, Aleko Fischer, Leon Fischer, Siegfried Kriegsmann, Adolf König, Dr. Chaim Ehrlich, Emil Rubel, Jakob Rubel, Bernhard and Jakob Sandmann, N. Salter, Wilhelm Weisselberger, J. Rosenwald, Dr. J. Bittmann, Kamillo Hornik, N. Gritzman, Chaja Landherz, Lawyer Dr. Elias Felder, Dr. Jacob Pelzel, Neliu Semmel, Gerson Glatter, Karl Altheim, Glasthal, Sumer Weiner, Max Lauer, Rudel, Lawyer Fleminger, Popliker, Wechsler, E. Salter, Jusiu Eifermann among others.

The Individual Sections

The most important and best loved section was without doubt, the gymnastics section. Proof for the excellent work of this section were the yearly sports festivals and gymnastic academies which were the most wonderful expression of the national (Zionist) idea by the Jewish youth. These festivals were national holidays. The Maccabi sent large delegations to the first and second Maccabia, whose free exercises called forth general admiration. The technical leaders of the section were: Schlomo Gottlieb, Berl Engler, Jusiu Winkler, N. Kreisel, Muziu Tuchmann, Kamillo Hornik, Dr. Emanuel Flor, Jacques Schneider, Bernfeld, Landmann, and Izchak Fang among others. As administrative leaders functioned Wilhelm Kligler, N. Landmann, Karl Bernstein, Alex, Ehrlich and Stanger. The technical leadership of the woman's section lay in the hands of the following women: Netti Engler-Gottlieb, Fanny Buxbaum-Bernstein, Chaja Landmann-Gritzman, Rella Kürschner, Riva Tuchmann, Gisela Reitmann, Lori Roll-Weiner, Else Greif, Grete Rosenbaum, Genia Lipson, the Rudich sisters and Toni Geller. The department leaders were Karl Weiner, Jitzchak Fang, J. Reissberg, the Perlmann brothers, Dr. Alfred Seidner and Max Geller. The gymnastics teachers were Prof. Lissner, Weinstock, Bubla and Kirchoff.

The light athletic section achieved noteworthy successes in various state (Bukovina) and national competitions. The following should be mentioned: Schlomo Gottlieb who won the gold medal of the city of Czernowitz in the first marathon (1920), Engineer Schächter (champion in the 100m, 200m and 400m races), Berl Engler (champion in pole vaulting), Norbert Klein (champion in 1500 m run), Finkenthal (100m sprint), Netti Engler (100m sprint and high jump), Muzia Münster (national champion in 100m and 200m sprits), Fanny Buxbaum-Bernstein (state champion in discus and shot put), Franz Klein (National champion in 100m sprint). The technical leaders of the section were Berl Engler, Schächter, Gustl Kleinberg, Netti Engler, Muzia Münster, Schoichetman, Norbert Klein, Dr. Walter Kiesler, Katz, Max Geller.

The soccer section

This was among the most loved sections. Thanks to the excellent work of the trainers coming from the ranks of the Vienna “Hakoah” (a soccer team) especially the outstanding experts, Kerr, Karl Vortrefflich, Andreas Glatter and Rottmann the team was always among the leading groups in the championship charts. In the field of administration, the Maccabi members Jakob Rubel, Siegfried Kriegsmann, Karl Bernstein, Emanuel Ebner, Josef Eifermann, Bernhard Sandmann, Wilhelm Kligler, Leopold Süssmann among others accomplished excellent work. The team was twice successful in winning the championship of Bukovina as well as the district of Czernowitz. In 1924 on the Polonia field in the deciding game against “Polonia” (5:3) with the following team:

Eifermann
Kamil         Blum
Jakob Sandmann Picker Landmann
Vortrefflich Perl Salomon Rosengarten M. Klüger

and in 1931 the end game against the anti-Semitic “Jahn” (3:2) with the following team:

Eppelboim
Goldenberg Katz
Schnapp Rubinger Kula
Finkenthal Reller Goldschmidt Fried Pfeffer

The team also achieved honorable results in many games abroad, for example in Lemberg against “Czarni” and “Pogon” 2:2 and 1:1. The games with the “Hakoah” Vienna will remain as an unforgettable memory. Among the most memorable players on the team were Schajowitz, Gorenstein, Druckmann, Losch, Ensel, Polesiuk and Andreas Glatter.

The “Hazena” (women's handball) were continuously state champions thanks to the work of the active players Netti Engler, Fanny Bernstein, Minna Fleischer, Rella Kürschner, Lozia Kamil, Vika Kaufmann, Erna Salter, Minna Blickstein, Fanny Liquornik, P. Schärf, Eckstein and Schneider. The technical leaders were Dankner and Otto Ehrlich.

Almost all the light athletes and Peretz Kaminetzki were members of the Ping-Pong section.

The swimming section had outstanding swimmers like Musia Mittelmann, Martha Bianowitz, the siblings Josef-Leon and Cilli Kinsbrunner, and the athletes[1] Spiner, Kinsbrunner, Dr. Flor, Nussbaum, Korn, Grossmann.

The bicycle racing section

This section under the leadership of Prof. Lissner had a large number of members among whom the following were especially active: Willi Münster, Siegfried Geller, Markus Geller and Wagenberg among others. The section often undertook long tours and at every sports festival led the entrance march of the sections.

The Winter Sport section included the following:

a) The Ski Section in which the following were very active: The leader Dr. Flor and the active members Dr. L. Schmelzer, Dr. L. Schapira, Nusi Grill, Geniu Niedermayer, Chaja Gritzman, Fanny Bernstein, Rella Kürschner, Tina Altheim, Erna Grill, Bianka Grill, The sisters Lise-Ella and Mina Fleischer.

b) The ice hockey section founded at the initiative of Adolf König and Karl Altheim in 1927 with the players Ruff, Markus, Fleminger, Gaster, König, Schuller, Presser, Eppelboim and Treisser among others. This team regularly had a place among the leading teams in the Bukovina championship charts and once won the regional championship. In 1933 (February 5-20) Maccabi had a strong representation in the Maccabi Winter Olympiad and achieved honorable results. The group was under the leadership of the Sports Council members Bernstein, Altheim, König and Tuchmann. Adolf König functioned as the president of the Ice Hockey League of Bukovina from 1927-1937 and was often called as an international ice hockey referee to supervise international games. King Carol II awarded him the Order of Culture for Sport medal.

The tennis section

The tennis section was founded in 1920 at the initiative of the Sports Council members Altheim and Glasthal and trained on its own tennis courts (in the vicinity of the Sturmwiese (Storm Meadow)). The section often competed in state and international tourneys and achieved good results. Among the battle tested top ranked players of this section were N. Fleminger, E. Gaster, H. Dolfin, K. Altheim, A. König, Feiger, Lempert, Rathsprecher, Richard Nussbaum, Walter Kiesler, and Thea Auerbach.

It should also be noted that the Maccabi Czernowitz had an excellent propaganda section whose most valuable agitation tool was the newspaper “Hamakkabi” (the Maccabi). The editorial staff consisted of: Dr. Chaim Ehrlich, Dr. J. Mosberg and Dr. H. Rubel among others.

The history of the Maccabi Czernowitz also had its tragic moments, among which should be remembered: the forced transfer of the championship games of 1934 from Czernowitz to Prague. In 1933, Maccabi Czernowitz received from the Maccabi World Organization, the honorable charge of holding these games, which were to be preparatory for the second Maccabiade, in Czernowitz, since this city with its 60,000 Jewish residents which served as a national, Zionist and cultural center for national manifestations of the Jewish youth was especially suitable. The preparations, done by a special committee under the supervision of the Association Steering Committee took a year. Then, 8 days before the assigned date, like a bolt of lightening out of a clear blue sky, came the news that the Romanian government, forbid the holding of the games because of “security” concerns. In great embarrassment, the Maccabi Steering Committee turned to the, at that time still truly democratic, government in Prague which approved the holding of the games in Prague. Luckily, the delegations of athletes which were already on their way to Czernowitz from the various lands of Europe could be redirected to Prague. The technical running of the games succeeded perfectly, but the games didn't succeed in the intended national demonstration of the Jewish youth. This was not altered by the fact that no less a person than Nahum Sololow opened the games with a inspiring speech, consoled the youth and urged them to come together even more firmly than before to work for the realization of the Zionist Ideal.

Another tragic occurrence was the collapse of a portion of the Maccabi tribune in 1938 during one of the military concerts held at the field. Fortunately, there were no deaths but there were many injuries, among them one person who was severely injured. Many of the injured sued the Association for damages. The law suites were put to an end when the Russians arrived in 1940.

In 1941, North Bukovina including the capital Czernowitz was occupied by the Russians. After deportation of 10,000 innocent Jews all cultural life was strangled. The sports associations were dissolved. An official order was issued demanding that all cups and victory trophies had to be given over to a special commission in the Justice Palace. The writer of these lines had the sad task of delivering the cups won by the Maccabi youth in hard fought contests, over 20 in number, to the collection point. The official in the Justice Palace took the trophies and dismissed the composer of this essay with the remark, “listen, Maccabi is dead.” With that ceased the activities of Maccabi Czernowitz.

There was another sports association in Czernowitz that was founded about the same time as Maccabi, the “Hakoah.” This association didn't belong to the Maccabi World Organization even though its first president, Dr. Moses Glaubach was a well known Zionist. The following presidents, Director Zehnwirt, Attorney Karpel, Dr. Moses Grünberg, Kahn, Herschku, Melichsohn, Gerson Glatter, Ruhalter, Bernstein, Leo Turtel, Dr. Bittmann-Sternberg, Spiegel were zealous workers. Training the youth in Zionist ideas was not one of the goals of this organization. Hakoah had only a rather good soccer section which often achieved a leading position in the championship games. Around the middle of the 30's a rather ugly dispute arose between Maccabi and Hakoah, which was finally resolved by thoughtful men on both sides by dissolving Hakoah and having its members join Maccabi.

There was still one more Jewish sports association:

The Jewish workers sports club “Borochow”

The existence of the Jewish workers sports club goes back to 1919: In this year the club first appeared under the name “Poale-Zion.”

The purpose of the founding was to retain the Jewish working youth, who began to turn to various movements, for the Zionist socialist worker movement and in addition to the physical training to educate them intellectually with a view toward giving them an appreciation for Israel.

In spite of all the difficulties, the work went forward and in 1920, the soccer team won the first World Game against the Ukrainian soccer team, “Dovbusch” with the result 3:10. The team played with the lineup of Bussgang, the Sitzer brothers, Herschkowicz, Knoller, Gross, Blech, Lew, Nachbar, Sommerfeld and Wolf Rugendorf.

The leadership consisted of the Members Schwarzmann, Ph. Mehler, Fruchter, the Weingarten brothers, Weidenfeld, S. Wolf and I. Seidner

In the years 1924/25 the sports organization was renamed “Borochow and a whole series of new sections were created.

Special attention was given to founding sports clubs with the same name in Bukovina and clubs were created in the towns of Radautz, Suceava, Sadagura, Lipcani, Briceni and Botosani which developed satisfactorily.

The soccer section which began playing in the “B” league, won the championship of this class and in the course of time climbed into the “A” league The team played many propaganda games in the provincial cities and also several in neighboring Poland.

The ice hockey teamed played in the local competitions with mixed success.

The gymnastics section had a good number of members and contributed greatly to the physical development of the working youth.

The ping-pong section had considerable success. It managed to achieve several first and second places in the Romanian National Championships in Oradea Mare.

The boxing section had good results in public boxing competitions.

The handball section which consisted of a woman's' team and two men's teams took part in local contests.

The chess team was successful, thanks to a respectable number of strong players, in attracting the attention of the local chess world and was able to achieve good results.

At all athletic activities which involved the individual sections, the social and intellectual life of the sports club was nurtured and improved and periodic lectures on literature and current issues were held which enjoyed great popularity with the members and friends of the organization.

The sport club stayed during the entire period of its existence in close contact with the “Hapoel” sports organization in Eretz Israel, which led to a visit of the Hapoel Motorcycle Club.

The sport clubs took an active part in collecting for the national funds like Keren Kajemet, Keren Hajessod, etc. The majority of the leading members were also active workers for the united workers' party, “Poale-Zion” and the party provided moral and material support for the sports organizations. In the course of the years, many active athletes have emigrated to Eretz Israel, both legally and illegally, thanks to the education they received from Borochow.

Since the reorganization, the individual sections were led by the following members:

Soccer: Glassberg, Kahane, Weisselberg, Sommerfeld, Alpern, Schweitzer, Brückner and Pauker.
Boxing: Klügermann, Elias Schärf, Schächter.
Ping Pong: Steinmetz, F. Kurz, Stein.
Ice Hockey: Karl Weingarten, Surkes.
Chess: Fredi Klier, Weintraub, H. Weingarten.
Gymnastics: Rosenbaum, Rosenstock, Galitz, I. Mehler.
Cultural Work: Prof. Kessler, Samet, Schütz, Prof. Gronich, Lawyer Hechtlinger, Fratkin (Porath), M. Hochstädt, R. Falik.
The narrower Action Committee had as members, the members Steering Committee: Dr. Thau, Dr. Kaswan, S. Singer, E. Leichter, Weidenfeld, Karl Weingarten, Sommerfeld and Arnold Krumholz.

Additional members of the leadership were: Prof. L. Kessler, Prof. Gronich, M. Glasberg, E. Schärf, K. Linder, M. Erbsenthal, Buchhänler, Preminger, I. Gruchter, L. Alpern, Golz, Spritzer, Jona Mehler, Reizis, Fredi Klier, M. Birnberg, M. Stein, M. Bendit. Administration: S. Wolf, Frieda Weingarten. Cashier: B. Glaser, Rosenbaum. Atorney: Lawyer W. Pistiner, Feiwel Eifermann.

When we talk about the leadership of the sports club Borochow in the last 15 years of its existence (1925-1940), so in first place are the gentlemen Ch. Weidenfeld (managing director) and S. Wolf (general secretary) as well as Karl Weingarten and Herman Sommerfeld (vice presidents) while in the years 1034-1936) the activity of Arnold Krumholz should be mentioned.

Of the former members and leading people of the sports club Borochov, unfortunately, many whose memory we want to honor have perished. In Siberia and in the camps: Dr. Benedikt Kaswan, Dr. Josef Thau, Prof. Leo Kessler, M. Erbsenthal, Siegfried Singer, Phöbus Mehler, book dealer Preminger, M. Glasberg, Itzik Fruchter, Kubi Lindner, Reizea Alpern and Stein.

In Israel: Prof. Kalman Gronich and Fredie Klier died.

In South America: Elias Schärf


In the north of Bukovina there was a Maccabi in Storozynetz under the leadership of N. Drimmer, Sand and a Maccabi in Wiznitz with Weiner and Schneider as leaders.

In the south of Bukovina Jewish sport was represented by “Hagwirah” in Radauti. It was founded in 1912 and developed later under the energetic leadership of the President Dr. Preminger and a hard working nationally conscious committee into one of the best organized sports clubs of Romania. The Hagwirah was a member of the Maccabi World Organization and had a close brotherly relationship with Maccabi Czernowitz. Its athletic activities were extremely varied. It possessed excellent gymnastics and light athletics sections and its soccer team was preeminent in the south of Bukovina. It also fielded tennis and handball teams and had hiking and bicycling sections. The culture section cared for education of the youth in the Zionist spirit. Among the founders of Hagwirah was Dr. Max Druckmann. After the First World War, Hagwirah was reactivated by Dr. Preminger who then remained its leader. He was effectively supported by the board members, Dr. J. Budik, Engineer Architect L. Halbrecht, Dr. Gedalje Halbrecht, Dr. A. Mechel, David Mechel, Dr. E. Weinstein, Dr. Sonntag and Arie Wolloch. The sports festivals of Hagwirah were always a great athletic event. Hagwirah reached the high point of its activity in 1935 when its delegation of 24 took part in the second Maccabiade in Tel-Aviv. The unhappy year of 1941 put an end to its activity which was taken up again in 1944 and in 1947 Hagwirah was able to celebrate its 35 years of existence with a great sports and gymnastics festival. Soon thereafter, however it was disbanded together with all other national sports organizations by official decree and its funds confiscated.

Hakoah Suceava was founded in 1912 by Dr. Adolf Wagner (first president), Moshe Wagner, Sch. Becker, B Schächter, K. Eidinger, Markus Mehler and Dr. Strominger. Later presidents were: Engineer H. Grünseit, Engineer Roll and Mrs. Dr. Sabine Hoffmann. The oldest section was the soccer section among whose best players were: L. Grossmann, M. Waldmann, S. Ellenbogen, Ph. Glückmann, Strominger and Saller. In later years, a womens' handball team was formed with members: M. Scherzer, N. Merlaub, M. Sachter, R. Sternberg-Geller, T. Doifik and B. Eidinger.

Hakoah Suceava as well as the sports club “Hanezach” called into life there in 1928 by S. Korn, N. Strominger, Engineer Oberwägner, Martin Hass and Dr. J. Schnarch were the forerunners of Maccabi Suceava founded in 1928. Among its founders were S. Weissbrod, J. Rosenberg and D. Dickmann. The presidents were Prof. Trauner, Engineer Roll and Dr. W. Schärf. Maccabi Suceava had a soccer section led by Martin Hass, a gymnastics section and a woman's handball section with members Rr. Brumberg, Schnarch, F. Kohn-Hass, A. Mergel-Selzer, H. Fuchs and M. Fuchs. Maccabi Suceava belonged to the Maccabi World Organization and had close ties to Maccabi Czernowitz and Hagwirah Radauti. The founding of brother organizations in Gura Humorului, Vatra-Dornei, Dorohoi, Botoschani and Itzkany can be attributed to the propaganda work of Maccabi Suceava. Maccabi Suceava ceased to exist in 1945.

There was also a Maccabi in Siret (leaders: Dr. Weissmann and Goldschmidt).

The entry of the Russians into North Bukovina and their influence in South Bukovina put an end to all national-cultural efforts and with that also the activities of the Jewish sports associations. But the seeds which the Jewish sports associations of Bukovina planted under the leadership of Maccabi Czernowitz 30 years of hard work among the ranks of the Jewish youth, they were not able to destroy. They bore glorious fruit. If today, so many products of the Jewish-national sports movement in Bukovina have found the way to Eretz Israel and have struck roots in the land, this is the result of the wonderful educational work of the Jewish sports associations.

At the September 14, 1953 meeting of former Bukovina Maccabi members held in Tel-Aviv, chaired by the writer of this article and also attended by Dr. and Mrs. Mayer Ebner, all the speakers and especially Judge Dr. Chaim Ehrlich, Dr. Markus Krämer and Josef Mosberg stressed the extreme significance of the Bukovina sports associations and especially Maccabi Czernowitz in educating the Jewish youth in the Zionist spirit.

Written by Dr. Heinrich Rubel (Tel-Aviv)

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Notes:

1) athletes: The author uses the word “Sportler” which translates as athlete, but I think that might be a typo and he possibly wanted to use “coaches” or “technical directors.”. Return

Vereine: I always use Association.
Sportrat: Sports Council. Sportraete: Sports Council members
board of directors (Praesidium)


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