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Vsya Rossiya Business Directory for Bessarabia

Background

This database currently contains more than 1,400 entries of apparently Jewish names from the 1897 Russian business directory, Vsya Rossiya, for Bessarabia gubernia. (This database does not include entries from the portions of Kherson and Podolia gubernias that are now part of Transnistria because we have not received a copy of those portions of the directory.)

Vsya Rossiya (“All Russia”) was a series of directories of the Russian Empire published on a yearly basis by Aleksei Sergeevich Suvorin from 1895 through 1923. Each directory includes detailed lists of government offices, public services, and medium and large businesses present in major cities across the Russian Empire.

Each directory is arranged by gubernia (province), followed by uezd (district) within each gubernia. In order, the uezds listed in the 1897 Vsya Rossiya directory for Bessarabia gubernia are (1) Kishinev (332 Jewish entries), (2) Akkerman (62 Jewish entries), (3) Bendery (260 Jewish entries), (4) Beltsy (160 Jewish entries), (5) Izmail (56 Jewish entries), (6) Orgeev (310 Jewish entries), (7) Soroki (85 Jewish entries), and (8) Khotin (147 Jewish entries).

Within each listing, government officials appear first, followed by manufacturing trades (identified as Factories and plants) in alphabetical order, and then followed by retail trades (identified as Commercial and industrial enterprises) in alphabetical order. Most of the Jews identified in the directory were involved in retail trades. Among the most common businesses were bakeries, books, bread-grain, drug stores, firewood, flour, groceries, groceries and tobacco, haberdashery, ironware, kitchenware, leather, ready-to-wear clothing, textile merchandise, timber, and tobacco.

The portions of the 1897 directory included in this database are not available on line. The 1895, 1899, 1900, 1902, and 1912 Vsya Rossiya directories are available for download here. The 1895 directory has already been extracted and is searchable through the JewishGen Romania Database and the JewishGen Ukraine Database, where results will be displayed under the name “Vsia Rossiia 1895 Business Directory.” We are in the process of extracting the remaining directories, which will be added to these databases upon completion.

Surnames that did not appear to be Jewish were omitted, erring on the side of including people who might not be Jewish. 

About This Database

Each record in this database contains the following information:                      

  • Last Name — Surname from entry                                                  
  • Given Name – Given name from entry
  • Patronymic – Father’s name in patronymic form (if given)
  • Business – Type of business, in Russian followed by English
  • Section – Class of business (Factories and plants, or Commercial and industrial enterprises), in Russian followed by English
  • Year – Year of director
  • Town – Name of town (as of 1900)                                                  
  • Uezd/District – Name of district
  • Gubernia – Name of province
  • Today’s Location – Current country
  • Pages – Column number of entry
  • Comments – Additional information (typically the address)        

    Acknowledgements

    The project manager was Jeff Wexler. Volunteer researchers for this project were Genny Imas, Alan Levine, Yuliana Murray, Jane Rollins, Fanny Rozenblat, Tsvika Rozenblat, and Bena Shklyanoy. Alexey Perminov provided the directory for extraction.

    Searching the Database

    This database is searchable via the JewishGen Unified Search, the JewishGen Romania Collection, and the JewishGen Ukraine Collection


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    Last Update: 02/01/2021  

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    Edmond J. Safra Plaza | 36 Battery Place | New York, NY 10280
    646.494.5972 | info@jewishgen.org | © 2021, JewishGen, Inc. All rights reserved.