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[Pages 298]


48°27' 23°15'

Ruthenian: Kusnive
Hungarian: Kovácsrét

Translated by Moshe A. Davis

Village in the area of Chust, located between the towns of Dolha and Kereczky,
approximately 30 kilometers north of Chust. All [non-Jewish] residents Ruthenians.


Year Jews Total
1768 9 -
1830 49 769
1880 121 -
1910 - 1780
1921 - 1814
1930 324 2268
1941 - 2919

[The First Jews]

Jews are first mentioned as living in Kusnicza in the Jewish Census of 1768. In that census are listed three families, each family consisting of three individuals – the total Jewish population thus being nine souls. The three families are listed as follows: the widow “Volycsane” (this name has almost certainly been mangled), who paid 15 florins per year land-usage tax; Yaminkish Zelig, who paid 12 florins; and Shimshon Yosef, who paid 20 florins per year.

By 1830 almost 50 Jews lived in Kusnicza. In a community of this size, it is almost certain that there was already a more or less established minyan. In an 1832 manuscript in the National Archives in Budapest (of which a photocopy exists in the Muller Collection of Tel Aviv University) there is listed the names of the heads of four families living in Kusnicza. These four families totalled 31 individuals (in parentheses is the number of total family members): Mendel Friedman (8), Chaim Friedman (12), Shlomo Friedman (8), Zisha Farkash (3).

[The Community, Its Institutions, and Individuals of Note]

We know almost no details about the Jews of Kusnicza in the following generations, as we did not succeed in interviewing anyone who came from the village. We did find two “Prenumeratin” lists [pre-publication subscription lists] which contains the names of Kusnicza dwellers. These two listings are both from the period between the two World Wars. One is for the book Zichron Shmuel (published in Bardiov in 5685), in which are listed the following individuals, who were apparently among the leaders of the community:

Mordechai Eliyahu Friedman
Moshe Yosef Friedman
Shimon the son of Tzvi
Dovid Friedman
Yitzchok Isaac Farkash
Yaakov the son of Henna Gittel Elavits
the bochur Lazar Stern
Shlomo Eisner
Chevras Mishnayos

The second prenumerantin listing is for the book Beis Asher (published in Munkacs in 5696), which lists:

Kehal Adas Yeshurin
Chevras Mishnayos, headed by Aaron Eisner.

Of this Aaron Eisner, we know that he was the son of R' Avraham Zev Eisner, who was among the important householders in the town Novoselitza. He was born in 5638 (1878) and was a student of the author of Keren L'Dovid. In 5660 (1900) he married the daughter of R' Tzvi Friedman in Kusnicza.

R' Shlomo Eisner [mentioned in the first prenumerantin listing] was among the important householders in Kusnicza. He was an established businessman, whose house was open to all. He was a follower of the Rebbe of Kareczky and also was a Szatmer Chassid. All of the residents of the town knew him as a wise and understanding person, to whom people would come to for advice in various endeavors. He was martyred in Aushwitz on 26 Iyar 5704 (1944). One of his children, R' Tzvi Eisner, serves as the Rabbi in the community of Allenville in the United States, and is close to the Rebbe of Szatmer.

[The Holocaust]

We are lacking in details of what happened to the Jewish residents of Kusnicza during the Holocaust. However, we did find the extremely short testimony of a young girl from Kusnicza which was given in the summer of 1945 in Budapest, a copy of which is in the Yad Vashem archives. According to her testimony, the Jews of Kusnicza were brought to the ghetto at Beregsas, and from there they were deported to Aushwitz, where they arrived on 23 May 1944.


Testimony in Yad VaShem archives: 015/1721.

Translated and edited by Moshe A Davis. This translation is dedicated to the memory of my grandparents – my grandfather Benish Davidovits (in America, Bennie Davis), who was born in the neighboring village of Leh (Szeleslonka, Shirukiy Luh), and my grandmother Chaya Chaimovits (in America, Helen Hayfer), who was born in the neighboring village Drahiv (Kövesliget, Drahova) – and to the members of their families (family surnames Chaimovits, Davidovits, Katz, Markovits, and Zelmanovits) who were murdered by the accursed Nazis and their accomplices. Hashem Yenakam Damam!

In this translation, I have endeavored to maximize ease of readability and the grammatical flow of the material, while keeping true to the spirit and the content of the information contained therein. To this end, in many places I have taken the liberty of rearranging the sentence and/or paragraph structure from that of the original Hebrew in order to improve the clarity and natural flow of ideas in English. Also, in many places I have slightly expanded the material, in order to clarify ideas or to define concepts which may not be familiar to readers who lack background in traditional Jewish customs and who are unfamiliar with Jewish Law. My own additions I have set apart by enclosing them in square brackets [ ].

Please note that many of the original sources used by the authors of Sefer Marmaros were written in languages other than Hebrew, which is the language of the text of Sefer Marmaros itself. Those original sources were not available to the translator, and thus most of the surnames and/or place names as transliterated here from the Hebrew may in fact have been spelled somewhat differently in the original source.

List of Jewish surnames from Kusnicza mentioned in this article:


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