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[Page 342]

Monuments of the Author of the “Divrei Chaim”,[1]
and his Family

by Harov Shmuel Meir HaCohen Hollander

Translated by Chana Saadia

Edited by Renee Miller

This is the order and the text of the monuments and the ohel[2] of the honored Rabbi, the holy scholar, author of the “Divrei Chaim” and all his holy family, may their memories be blessed.

The text on the monument [reads]: The great and holy Rabbi, our master and teacher; the holy master of Kabbala, man of God. The radiant reflection, the pure candelabrum, unique in his generation, the holy elder sage known all over the world, Rabbi of all the exiles, whose deeds and prayer were with dedication of the soul to God, and whose soul cleaved to the Creator as one of the archangels, our holy Rabbi Chaim, author of the Divrei Chaim, son of our righteous teacher Rabbi Aryeh Leibish z”l[3], descended from the holy Maharshal[4] z”l and the great Rabbi the Chacham Zvi[5] ztz”l. He served [wore the crown of] the Rabbinate of Sandz forty-six years, [6] and died in old age on the twenty-fifth day of Nisan, 5636 [1876].

In those days the head of the holy community sh”b[7] was the great and prominent gvir[8] Rav Yudeli haCohen Hollander and the righteous Rabbi was then with his whole family [staying] with him for more than a whole year, with all his expenses [paid], and he rented for him a good apartment and received signatures from the town and became the head of the Holy Religious Court of Sandz. [9]

To his right is buried his holy son our teacher Rabbi Meir Nosson, who died during his holy father's lifetime, and on the other side is buried his holy son Rabbi Aron, abd”k of Sandz. He was the “krayz-Rav”[10] there. And in his will he ordered not to bury him very near his holy father but further away, but the sextons did not want to obey his request and they buried him in the same row but a bit to the side of his holy father. Behind him is buried the son of the holy Rabbi Rav Aaron ztz”l, the great Rabbi Sholem abd”k Piekla who was also rab”d of the Sandz community [and who died] on the first day of Av, 5666 [1906]. The holy scholar Rabbi Meir Nosson died on the fifteenth day of Av and was the son-in-law of the holy Rabbi Eliezer of Dzikow ztz”l. Also buried there is the holy Rabbi Leibish. He was a Talmudic scholar in Sandz and was formerly abd”k of Grybow, [and] was the son of the holy Rabbi Aaron z”l. Also buried there is Rabbi Moshe who was rbdk”k[11] of Cieniawa ztz”l, son of the holy Rabbi, [author of] the “Divrei Yechezkel”[12] ztz”l. And also his son the holy Rabbi Leibish Mordechai, abdk”k [13] of Cieniawa. The holy Rabbi Moshe died in 5680 [1920], on the thirteenth day of Heshvan. All the above rest in the ohel in which is the grave of the holy Rabbi [Chaim] z”l.

Outside of the ohel rest in peace the righteous Rabbi Moshe son of Rabbi Mordechai David Unger, who was a son-in-law of the holy Divrei Chaim ztz”l. Also near him [is] his wife the righteous woman a”h[14], and the holy Rabbi Yitzchak Tuvia Rubin, son-in-law of the holy Divrei Chaim ztz”l, with his wife the righteous woman Nechamale a”h of Sandz. And the wives of the holy author of the Divrei Chaim ztz”l are buried near the window of the ohel on the outside, and the head of the community, the great scholar and gvir Rabbi Yudele haCohen Hollander sh”b[15] of the holy Rabbi z”l rests there near the ohel on the outside, to the side of the window and the path which people took to visit the monument of the Divrei Chaim z”l. Near the path on the other side of the ohel rests the holy gvir sh”b Rabbi Moshe Leizer Hollander, grandson of Rabbi Yudele Hollander z”l, and the last holy Rabbi who was abd”k of Sandz z”l was was the holy and learned Rabbi Mordechai Ze'ev Halberstam, who was formerly abdk”k of Grybow. And there is another ohel in the large community of Sandz which is of the holy Rabbi Zelka ztz”l who was one of the followers of the Seer [16] ztz”l, and he [was the one who] ordered that the holy Divrei Chaim be z”l accepted as the abdk”k of Sandz. There was also an ohel

[Page 343]

of the great scholar Rabbi Baruch Landau who was of the family of the Noda Be'Yehuda[17] z”l, who was called krayz-Rav in Sandz. And after his death the holy Rabbi Aaron z”l was appointed krayz-Rav. And in the ohel of the scholar Rabbi Baruch Sega”l[18] Landau z”l is also buried his son. Outside the ohel near the entrance on the right is buried his grandson the generous gvir Rabbi Shraga Feivish Segal Landau, and on the left is buried Rabbi Zvi Hersch Landau, who was the grandson of the scholar Rabbi Baruch Landau z”l.

And these are the names of the holy family of the Rabbi of all the exiles, Rabbi Chaim of Sandz of blessed memory [19]:

Rabbi Yechezkel Shraga Halberstam abd”k Cieniawa, author of
        “Divrei Yechezkel”, died 6 Tevet 5659 [1899] aged 89 years.
Rabbi Baruch abd”k of Rudnik and Gorlice, died 1 Adar 5666 [1906].
Rabbi David abdk”k Cieszanow, died 25 Elul 5689 [1899].
Rabbi Meir Nosson, died 15 Av [20].
Rabbi Aaron abdk”k Sandz, died rosh chodesh menachem Av, 5659 [1899].
Rabbi Sholom Eliezer, the Ratzferter Rebbe.
Rabbi Yeshua of Krakow.
And these are the names of the sons-in-law of the holy Rabbi of Sandz z”l:
Rabbi Mordechai David of Hornistopol/Homrzyska?, author of the responsa
        “Emek She'aylah” and other books died 23 Elul, 5664 [1904].
Rabbi Moshe Unger, son of the holy Rabbi Mordechai David of Dabrowa z”l.
Rabbi Eliezer Yerucham son of the holy Rabbi Yisroel z”l, Rebbe of Krakow
Rabbi Yitzchak Tuvia Rubin son of the holy Rabbi Meir abd”k Glagov z”l.
Rabbi Betzalel Yehoshua died 5 Tammuz, grandson of the holy Rabbi Meir of
        Peremyshlany ztz”l.
Rabbi Aaron Horowitz, abd”k Rajcza, son of the holy Rabbi who wrote the
        “Imrei Noam”.
Rabbi Eliezer of Oshvitzen [Auschwitz, Oswiecim], son of the holy Rabbi Yehoshua of Kamienica z”l, and my grandfather, the holy Rabbi Yosef haCohen Hollander, who was abdk”k Mszana Dolna, died 12 Tammuz, and [who] was a faithful student of the holy Rabbi Chaim of Sandz ztz”l. And he said of him that he valued him not as a grandson but as a son, and he made him Rabbi in Mszana Dolna, and he was a colleague of Rabbi Shlomo of Bachow and of the holy Rabbi Moshe abd”k Bardejov.
Written by sh”b Rabbi Shmuel Meir haCohen Hollander son of the holy Rabbi Nosson David abdk”k Cieniawaztz”l, formerly Rabbi in Chernowitz and abdk”k Cieniawa and Doaraban and now in Tel Aviv...

NOTE: Words in brackets added by translator.

[Page 346]

Boti Tfile [Houses of Prayer]
and Yeshivas in Sandz

by Fayvel Levinson

Translated by Renee Miller

The shul [synagogue] - not a single rov [Orthodox rabbi] or dayen [assistant to the Orthodox rabbi] prayed there. The rov only came blazn shoyfer [blow the ram's horn {done on Rosh Hashanah and on Yom Kippur}] and on Simkhes Toyre [celebrating the completion of the year's reading cycle of the Torah] to lead the hakofes [circular procession with the Torah scroll]. Mostly the intellectuals and the homeowners were concentrated in the shul.

The besmedresh of Hasidim [small orthodox synagogue of the Hasidim] – there the Piekler [from Piekla] rov, R'Sholem Halbershtam z'l [zal {may the memory of a righteous one be blessed}] and after his death, his sons-in-law Harov [title preceding the name of a rabbi] R' Mayer Unger, Harov Borukh Kanner, the Cichawer rov: Harov Avigdor Teitelboim, the Piwnicer rov and R' Moysheli Bloom [Blum] dum”ts [may his memory be blessed]. In Hasidic bihm”d [small Orthodox synagogue,] the well-to-do Hasidic Jews came, those more conscious of their status, and the intellectual class of be”b [home owners], as well as the young men with worldly education, in all approximately 250 mispalelim [those who pray].

The Grybóver synagogue – this was the synagogue of the city rabbi who called himself Grybover rov named after the city Grybow, virtually next door to Sandz where he was the rabbi for Sandz. This was the largest synagogue in the city with 600 Hasidic Jews praying there every Shabes [Sabbath]. Here were also concentrated 250 young men who studied with the Grybover rov, first R' Leibish z”l, with his children, R' Moyshele, R' Efrim and R' Hersh, and later the last Sandzer rov, R' Mordechai Zav hi”d [may the Lord avenge his blood] as well as R' Mordechai Josef Sapir e”h, the most senior dayen in the city.

The “Divrei Chaim's” bihm”d [besmedresh] or R' Yitzhok Tubi's bihm'd, as it used to be called – those who prayed there numbered about 250 Hasidic Jews, mainly Bobover [named after town Bobow] Hasidim. There were also about 200 young men and boys as well as a large number of young men from other places who studied with the Bobover and called themselves Yeshiva Etz Chaim. They had “tomekh-oreyto” [supporter of the Torah], a kind of financial unit that supported the yeshiva with small amounts from the Bobover. In the “Divrei Chaim's besmedresh his son-in-law hrh”ts [the Righteous {Rabbi}] Yitzhok Tubia prayed; after his death his children, Rabbis: Asher Josele and R' Moyshele z”l as well as Chaiml Dayan e”h also prayed there.

Cieniawer Orthodox besmedresh – 150, all Cieniawer Hasidim prayed there. They were counted among the nicest homeowners and gvrim [rich men] in the city, such as the well-known family Englender and Klagsbald and others. Tsum ersht [first of all] R' Moyshele the Cieniawer rabbi, the son of the “Divrei Ezekiel” reigned. He had complaints against the head of the Rabbinate in Sandz, the center of Khasides. From far and near, Cieniawer Hasidim came to R' Moyshele z”l. After his death, R' Leibish Mordechai z”l was crowned as Rebbe.

[Page 347]

However, he left Sandz and settled in Cracow, and his oldest son R' Zalman Idel remained in Sandz. In 1931, the father, while in Sandz on a visit, died suddenly and as memeye mokum, [substitute] R' Zalman Idel hi”d [may the Lord avenge his blood] was selected. He had his residence in Sandz until the outbreak of the war.

Khevre Shomrim [The Guardians Society] – 100 steady attendees, mostly tradesmen, but on the weekdays it was the center of the entire city where minyonim [prayer quorums of ten male adults] gedavnt [prayed] from dawn til eleven o'clock. There R' Moyshe Frank taught a shier [lesson in Talmud]. Also, before dawn every day, special prayers, shomrim laboker were recited.

KhevreTilim [The Psalms Society] – about 150 people prayed there, several Jews and ordinary Hasidim and homeowners; the organizer and builder was R' Shmuel Yeshie Kempler. There Harov R' Bentsion Eichenshtein, son-in-law of Harov R' Mordechai Dudl prayed.

Khevre Talmetoyre [Society for elementary school for the poorest children] – a municipal besmedresh where 100 people prayed.

Besmedresh of Harov R' Mordechai Dudl Unger – about 100 prayed there, small merchant and Hasidic Jews; Harov R' Ben Tsion Unger prayed there.

Satmarer besmedresh – about 150 Hasidic Jews, mostly Ciechanover and Kolaczycer Hasidim, the fanatics and fervent Hasidim prayed there. Their leader – Harov R' Khonon Hersh Rubin of Satmar nkd hr”hk [grandson of the Holy Man] Mshinyava z”l

Besmedresh the Leader Nokhan Krishmer - about 50 came to pray, homeowners that were rich Hasidim

Besmedresh of R'Shloymele Korn – about 50 came to pray, homeowner Hasidim

Besmedresh of Glisker Rov – about 150 came to pray. Hasidim from Harov Htsadik R'Naftali Tsvi abd”k [head of the Bes Din {Rabbinical court} Assembly], his son R' Leybele and his grandson R' Mendl hi”d.

Besmedresh of Altsanzer Rov – about 100 come to pray

Besides these, there were minyonim, on the Helena, Pshetakive near the railroad and others on the Piekla. There were other prayer minyonim such as: Yad kharutsim Bikor Khoylim Society [Society for Visiting the Sick], Piekla besmedresh, Shomri Emune [Guardians of the Faith], Mizrakhi [East], Holtz-Platz, in the suburbs and further.

Yeshivas in Sandz

Although, since the “Divrei Chaim” Sandz had been the greatest mokim Toyre [place of learning] in this part of Eastern Galicia, there had never actually existed any special yeshiva there, only young men and boys sat in the besmedresh and learned. In the year 1905, a yeshiva was created and R' Abraham Hirsh Fridman from Bardiev was appointed as rosh yeshiva [head of the yeshiva]. He was a very shrewd person and bal masber [great speaker] and he gathered together a hundred disciples who were great t”kh [scholars of Torah] and learned men. In the nineteen thirties, when the Hasidim began to bring everyone under one umbrella, each group wanted to grab predominance in the city. Hasidic yeshivas were created: the “Bobover” Yeshiva, “Etz Chaim” [tree of life] with Harov R' Mendil Rotenberg as head of the yeshiva, 50 unknown young men and 150 townspeople; the Cieniawer Yeshiva with R'Heshel Frenkel and R' Hershel Hurvitz as heads, about 100 young men. The largest number were Grybówer with about 250 young men.

[Page 348]

List from 1876 of Pre-Subscribers
for a Seyfer [religious book]

Translated by Renee Miller

shv”t [Light of Torah {name of the book}] Responsa of Rabbi Khoymer haKodesh [the Holy One] trl”v [year 1876]

e”i [Grandson of the author] Tsvi Hirsh Halevi Hurwitz Mbrod [of Brod]

Shmot Hanshim [Names of the People]


Harov mKrayz Aron Halbershtam av”d [head of the Bes Din {religious court}]

Bnu [and his son] R' Ariye Lib Halbershtam

Sh”b [shoykhet {ritual slaughterer}] R' Chaim Yakov Hurvitz

R' Asher Meir Halbershtam

R' Abush Meir Bransdorf hakutb dhrb heldik [Rabbi's scribe]

R' Chaim Henik Herbst

Sh”b [shoykhet] Aron Hurvitz

R' Elimelekh Fridman

R' Shimkhe Gebil

R' Yakov sh”b [shoykhet]

Bnu [his son] R' Sender

Bnu h' [his son of] Asher Lemil

R' Avigdor Klagsbald

R' Moyshe Abiezer kh”n [Cohan {of the priestly class}] Nanger

R' Shmelke Weinberger

R' Yaskia Mahler

R' Shimon Alter Paliboym [or Faliboym] ebur bihm”d [of the besmedresh]

R' Pinkhus Levi Royzingartin

R' Aleksander Feterfrynd [or Peterfrynd]

R' Moyshe br' [son of] Zanvil mshrt h”kodesh [servant, the holy] Blazenshteyn

R' Menachem Mendel parnes [synagogue official]

R' Boaz Kenman

R' Shimon Halbershtam


  1. Literally: “Words of Life” or “Words of Rabbi Chaim” – a series of books on the Bible and Jewish law by Rabbi Chaim Halberstam. Rabbis are very often known by the name of their most important book. Return
  2. Memorial building over the grave of an important Rabbi. Return
  3. z”l = zichrono livracha – may his memory be a blessing; also ztz”l = zecher tzadik livracha – may the memory of the righteous be a blessing, and variations on this. Return
  4. Rabbi Shlomo Luria [1510-1573] Return
  5. Rabbi Zvi Hirsh Ashkenazi [1660-1718] Return
  6. This and several other minor points are corrections of editing errors in the Hebrew text, in this case based on reading the text of Rabbi Halberstam's monument. Return
  7. means either “she'ar bsoro”- a relative, or “shochen beito” – one who lives in his house, meaning a very close relationship Return
  8. “gvir” = a wealthy prominent and honored man in his community Return
  9. Meaning the Chief Rabbi -usually abbreviated abd”k or rab”d. Return
  10. Rabbi of the district Return
  11. rbdk”k = rosh bes din kehillat kodesh. = head of the religious court of the holy community Return
  12. Rabbi Yechezkel Halberstam Return
  13. Same meaning as 11. Return
  14. Aleha hashalom – may she rest in peace. Return
  15. See note 7. Return
  16. Rabbi Yaakov Yitzchak Horowitz, known as the Seer of Lublin [1745-1815] Return
  17. Rabbi Yechezkel haLevi Landau [1713-1793] Return
  18. segan le'cohen = Levi Return
  19. Without the honorifics Return
  20. 1855 Return

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