Jonava On The Banks Of The Vylia;
In memory of the destroyed
Jewish community of Jonava

(Jonava, Lithuania)

55°05' / 24°17'

Translation of
Yanove oyf di breges fun Vilye;
tsum ondenk fun di khorev-gevorene yidishe kehile in Yanove

Edited by: Shimon Noy

Tel Aviv, Jonava Society, 1972 (Y,E)



Project Coordinator

Susan M. Goldsmith



Jerrold Landau


Our sincere appreciation to Helen Rosenstein Wolf
for typing up the English text to facilitate its addition to this project.


This is a translation from: Yanove oyf di breges fun Vilye; tsum ondenk fun di khorev-gevorene yidishe kehile in Yanove
(Jonava On The Banks Of The Vylia; In memory of the destroyed Jewish community of Jonava),
ed. Shimon Noy, Tel Aviv, Jonava Society, 1972 (Y, E)

Note: The original book can be seen online at the NY Public Library site: 2236

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Translated by Jerrold Landau

{First pages}   I-VI
A Word from the Editor   VII
[Pages IX-XII]    
Know From Whence You Came   1-52
Our Vibrant Town Yisrael Yaakov Pogir [USA] 3
These are the Generations * * * 5
Foster mother Shimon Noy (Gorfein) [Kibbutz Amir][2] 6
Snatched Glimpses from Afar {E: 5} Miriam Zachary (Lomiansky-Wulf) [USA] 8
A Town of Working People “Common Folk” Yitzchak Ben-David [Burstein] 12
My Jonava Shmuel Goldshmid [London] 15
Beginning, Growth and Destruction {E: 8} Yitzchak Yudelevich [Jerusalem] 19
During the First World War Aharon Gazit (Zisla) [Ramat Gan] 21
Exile (A poem) Noach Stern [Israel] 22
Tours of our Town in Reality and Imagination Yitzchak Burstein 24
Sabbath Eve on the Vylia (poem) Noach Stern [Israel] 31
Before and After the War Meir Tzoref (Goldshmid) [Tel Aviv] 38
Our Parents Home   53-90
My Parental Home Moshe Shamir 54
The House on the Street of the Road (Rechov Hakvish) Rachel Soloveitchik (nee Janosevich) [Tel Aviv] 55
He Preferred the Interpersonal Commandments Shimon Noy (Gorfein) 56
The Story and Annals of One Family Sara Burstein [Tel Aviv] 58
Friday in my Town (poem) Dov Blumberg [Cape Town] 68
They are all Dear to me Ala Daltitsky (nee Abramovich) [Tel Aviv] 70
Years that I Will Never Forget Aryeh Solsky 73
“I am not Owed Payment for that which G-d Granted me” Shoshana and Mordechai Rashkes 74
Father was also Like a Mother to us Freda Khasid 77
“Your Wife is Like a Fruitful Vine, Your Children are Like Olive Shoots” David Rubin [Bnai Brak] 78
With Torah, Service and Good Deeds T.[oybe] B.[en Paz] (Goldshteyn) [Jerusalem] 80
The Abridged Code of Jewish Law [The Shulchan Arukh] on the Work Table Menachem Levin 81
Links in the Chain of Generations (a poem) AAvshalom Tzoref (Goldschmidt) of [Kibbuz Ginosar] 82
In my Parents Home Dr. Shimon Zak 84
Grandfather is Also Remembered for the Good Tikva Katz [Givataim] 86
I Loved to go to Grandmother Chaya Grabersky [Tel Aviv] 87
My Grandfather Reb Mashel Baruch Lin (Jalinovich or Ilinevits) [Ramat Gan] 88
But… Dina Rikless (nee Perlstein) 90
Journeys to the Land   91-114
In the Achva Group with the First Chalutzim of Lithuania Aharon Gazit (Zisla) 93
Something About My Parent's Home Aharon Gazit (Zisla) 97
His Entire Essence Was Firmly Rooted Friends tell about Chaim Chermoni (Munits) 98
...And the Straw Pierced our Flesh Dvora Garber (nee Zlonker) [Petach Tikva] 99
Four Who Were Among the First Pioneers Dov Blumberg [Capetown] 100
I Snuck Out the Window Batya Tauba Opnitzky [Tel Aviv] 102
About an Orange Tzvi Khasid [Tel Aviv] 104
A Pioneering Family Rachel Ben-Yehuda (Mintz) 106
Fortunate With a Dual Meaning Zelig Even (Stein) [Kibbutz Gavat] 107
From the Cheder to Hechalutz Eliezer Kokhavi (Stern) [Kibbutz Netzer Sereni] 108
A Carpenters Journey to the Land Daniel Rikless [Tel Aviv] 109
On the Heels of the First Ones Baruch Lin (Ilinevits) 112
A Town of Chalutzim (Pioneers) Shimon Shapira 114
Personalities and Events   115-140
Some Jewish Lithuanian Scholars From The Book of Lithuanian Jewry 117
Rabbi Chaim Yitzchak Silman The sisters Sara Pinta and Mina Markusevich (nee Silman) [Tel Aviv] 121
His Entire Life Was Dedicated to His Art Yeshayahu Kulviansky 122
One of the Dear ones of Jonava (M.[oshe] Ivensky) Yitzchak Ben-David Burstein 125
I Learned a Great Deal from Him: More on Ivensky Sara Burstein 127
Shmuel Goldshmid (Autobiographical article) 129
Noach Stern   130
A Portrait of the Young Poet (poem) Noach Stern [Israel] 131
About Two Brothers who Dedicated their Lives to Those in Need Tovia Ben-Pazi (Bronznik) [Jerusalem] 132
Rabbi Yisrael Yaakov and his Son the Artist Golda Sirek (Saker) [Givataim] 133
Inside and Outside Golda Sirek (Saker)[3] 134
With Mixed Feelings Chaya-Rivka Feinberg (nee Aharonson) 136
A Little of This and a Little of That Shmuel Ben-Menachem (Deitz) [Khadera] 136
Between Water and Fire Esther Tilmun (nee Novikhovich) 137
Dvor'ka the Divorcée {Y: 341} Israel Yaacov Pagir [USA] 138
Mosheke the “Moldy” Yitzchak Ben David 139
Tales and Exaggerations Sara Burstein 139
Activist Youth and Social Awareness   141-161
Maccabee Yitzchak Ben-David Burstein 143
“Halpoel” and the Youth Eliahu Kagan [Tel Aviv] 144
The First National Youth Organization Y[itzchak]. B[urstein]. 147
The Hashomer Hatzair Chapter Shimon Noy (Gorfein) 150
The First Hebrew Kindergarten Golda Sirek (Saker) [Givataim] 151
The Tarbut Hebrew Elementary School Chana Zimrani (Granevich) 152
The Or Noga Yeshiva Shmuel Ben-Menachem 157
Institutions and Social Activities Y[itzchak. Ben David. (Burstein) 157
A Note on the Communal Council Baruch Kursik 160
The Firefighters Baruch Lin (Ilinevits) 160
To Hell and Back   163-258
  Menachem Levin 166
The Beginning of the Destruction {Y: 376} Reizl David (Rashkes) 167
The Last Day {Y:382} Yerachmiel Garber 171
Days of Torment Nachum Blumberg [Tel Aviv] 173
My Town (a poem) Dov Blumberg [Capetown] 181
We Were Saved From the Talons of the Murderers {Y: 387} Tovia Garber 184
How I Survived {Y: 384} Leah Druker (Manusevich) 185
My Paths of Suffering {Y: 389} Leah Hellerman (Kronik) 186
Thus Was I Saved {Y: 395} Lipa Berzin 188
We Fled From Our House {Y: 392} Chana Leah Gutler (Kravchok) 189
In the Talons of the Enemy Meir Tzoref (Goldshmid) [Tel Aviv] 191
A Hymn of Jewish Faith (poem) Noach Stern [Israel] 204
What I Endured – A Little of the Large Amount… Ala Abromovich–Dalitsisky 206
The Shaulists Were Worse than the Germans Shmuel Tepper [Ramat Hasharon] 218
In the Ghetto and the Camp Nachum Blumberg [Tel Aviv] 219
From the Vale of Tears and the Valley of Murder Sinai Persky [Tel Aviv] 227
In the Path of Suffering {E: 19} [Sidney Iwens] Yeshaya Ivensky [USA] 229
With the Townspeople of Jonava on the Front and the Hospital {Y: 400} David Friedman 241
My Activities in the Kovno Ghetto {Y: 402} Tzvi Levin 243
The Straight Path that We had to Follow -- More on the Work of Tzvi Levin 244
With a Clear Conscience In memory of Yehuda Zopovich 245
People of Jonava in the Fight Against the Nazis David Rubin 246
Miriam Lan In Memory of Shmerke “Valonas” (Namiot) 247
A Veteran Partisan and Commander About the Actions of the Partisan Shmuel Deitz 247
A Pistol and Tefillin Shmuel Ben-Menachem 248
The Stubborn People of Starovir   251
Illegal Mail in the Kovno Ghetto {Y: 404} Efraim Zilberman 252
I Was a Partisan for Three Years Zalman Rochman 254
Marching Song Noach Stern 258
Townspeople of Jonava in Siberia Y[itzchak]. [Ben-David] (Burstein) 259
I Fought and Succeeded Batya Goldshmid, (nee Perevoznik) [Israel] 276
One Day in the Siberian Taiga Batya Goldshmid, (nee Perevoznik) [Israel] 278
To Those who are Making the Effort - Be Strong and of Good Courage!   280
A Small Room that Contains So Much Riva Shalovich 281
Impressions… At the Memorial Ceremony 281
In Memory of the Fallen   283
   Yitzchak Pogirsky Dr. Shimon Zak from the book “Banim” (“Sons”) 283
   Yerubaal and Hillel Lavie, Rachel Zisla Published by Ein Harod 284
   Mordechai Herman Shoshana and Gershon Vilan 285
   Eliahu Hagalili (Galanreichik)   286
Jonava[4]   287-409
A Backward Glance   289-295
Our Big–City Shtetl Yisrael Yaakov Pagir (United States) 291
Productivity, Cultural, and Peculiarities Efraim Zilberman 294
Our Parental Home   297-311
My Incarnations Yisrael Yaakov Pagir [USA] 299
My Life Stopovers Mari Winton (Moshe Vinitzky) 307
Through America to Israel Tzipora Winton (nee Shaham) 309
Characters and Personalities   313-368
The Excommunication Declared by Rabbi Silman Frank Sirek (America) 315
Rabbi Silman the Stringent Frank Sirek (America) 316
A Series of Personalities David Friedman [Vilna] 317
Areh Yankel Yisrael Yaakov Pogir 325
With his own Traits Yitzchak 328
A Gallery of Personalities Meir Tzoref (Goldschmid) 331
Episodes and Events Ella Daltitsky (Abramovitch) of Tel Aviv 335
Two Poems Avraham Yitzchak Abramovitch 337
Meita the Baker Frank Sirek 339
One Relates Sara Burstein 340
Dvorake the Divorcee {H: 138} Yisrael Yaakov Pogir 341
“Labas” the Lithuanian Policeman Yerachmiel Garber 343
Noach the Roof Layer Yerachmiel Garber (Tel Aviv) 345
Where is Father Rachel Dushnitzky 346
My First Year of Working at Filvinskys Yisrael Yaakov Pogir 347
From the Series of Folk Songs   348
Nicknames   351
Our Talmud Torah Yisrael Yaakov Pogir 352
On Separate Paths Y. Y. Pogir 361
My Native Village of Siesikai Shmuel Balnik 362
To Hell and Back   369-409
*** (Poem) Batya Perlstein 372
At the Large Mass Grave Efraim Zilberman 373
The Beginning of the Destruction {H: 167} Reizl David (Rashkes) [USA] 376
The Last Day {H: 171} Yerachmiel Garber 382
Fortunate to Remain Alive {H: 185} Leah Drucker (Monosevich) [Tel Aviv] 384
We Were Saved from the Talons of the Murderers {H: 187} Tuvia Garber [Tel Aviv] 387
My Way of Suffering {H: 186} Leah Helerman (Kronik) [Melbourne, Australia] 389
We Fled from the Home {H: 189} Chana–Leah Gutler (Kravchok) [Tel Aviv] 392
Thus Was I Saved {H: 188} Lipa Berzin [Tel Aviv] 395
I Was With Them At Night R. Spigler (Mankovski), Melbourne 397
Songs from the Ghetto   398
With the People of Jonava on the Front and in the Hospital {H: 241} Dovid Friedman of Vilna 400
My Activities in the Kovno Ghetto {H: 243} Tzvi Levin 402
Illegal Mail in the Kovno Ghetto {H: 252} Efraim Zilberman 404
Two Good Friends Yitzchak [Ben–David (Burstein)] 408
List of those Killed   411
List of Those Who Fell on the Battlefield   425
Jonaver (Yanover) Organization in New York   427
Contents of the English Part   1-35
Glimpses at Janova {H: 8} Miriam Zakhary (Lomiansky-Wulf) 5
Beginning, Growth and Destruction {H: 19} I. Judelevitch 11
My Years of Agony {H: 229} [Sidney Iwens] Jesaiah Ivensky [USA] 15
List of Pictures and Drawings   XIII XV
List of Pages of Pictures and Drawings   XVI

Translator's Footnotes

  1. When an article appears in translation in a different section (Hebrew, Yiddish, or English), I added an annotation of correspondence. Thus, H: 229 means that the article appears in Hebrew on page 229. Return
  2. When the Israeli or American name differs from the original Yiddish name, the Yiddish name is included in parentheses. Return
  3. The order of last names of this entry and the previous was transcribed from the text (I suspect one ordering is in error). Return
  4. The Yiddish Section. Return

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