Pershay before 1917


XVI - XVIII century

- Pershay was a private possession of Vilno Roman Catholic Bishops in the Great Lithuanian Princedom. Jewish population appeared.


- Vilno Roman Catholic Bishop Yury Radzivill founded the Church of St. Yury in Pershay.

Since 1793

- in Russian Empire.

Since 1795

- Pershay became a possession of Count Tyshkevich, who renovated the church.

Since 1801

- a shtetle in Minsk District of Minsk Province.

Vital Statistics


Number of Jews

Number of Non-Jews


Specific gravity in total population number

XVII century

Jewish population appeared


about 260

Total population




Total population

No info

Jewish Life

By 1900 there was 1 praying house in Pershay.

Economical Review.

Since early time Pershayka river was the main road for Pershay habitants, who were busy with agriculture and wood chopping.

In XVII Jewish resident population appeared there. Traditional activities of local Jewish population were trade with timber, grain and vodka.

During Russian principality, vodka trade was under state hard control and became less popular among Jewish businessmen. But Russian authorities did a lot to develop the region because of military and fiscal reasons mostly. First of all, old communications were reconstructed there:

- post communications road Minsk - Oshmyany;

- trade road Volozhin - Ivenets.

In XIX, because of development of the AllRussian Market, new types of communications appeared in the region.

Since 1871 the closest railway station was in Zaslavl (42 km), telegraph station and post office were in Volozhin (14 km).

Here is the table of development of Pershay in mid. XIX - early XX centuries:

Date of record

Number of houses





Here is the list of major business and state enterprises of Pershay and the Subdistrict for 1902.

Name of owner

Type of business


Rogovin David son of Aron

Water mill


General cultural information.

In beg. XX century in Pershay there were:

- an Orthodox Church;

- a public primary school.

The closest doctor, post office and synagogue were in Volozhin (14 km).

Copyright 1997-1998 Oleg Perzashkevich and Sergey Rybchenok