“Liubavas” - Encyclopedia of Jewish
Communities in Lithuania

(Lyubovo, Lyubavas, Liubavo)

55°22' / 23°03'

Translation of the “Liubavas” chapter from
Pinkas Hakehillot Lita

Written by Dov Levin

Published by Yad Vashem

Published in Jerusalem, 1996


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This is a translation from: Pinkas Hakehillot Lita: Encyclopedia of Jewish Communities, Lithuania,
Editor: Prof. Dov Levin, Assistant Editor: Josef Rosin, published by Yad Vashem, Jerusalem.

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(Pages 355)

Liubavas (Lith.)

(Lyubovo, Lyubavas, Liubavo)

Written by Dov Levin

Translated by Shalom Bronstein

A regional city in the Marijampole District, a distance of 14 kilometers southwest of Kalvarija (cf.), founded in the last half of the 18th century. In 1757 it already had eighty-four houses and 425 residents, but Jews are not mentioned. The number of residents reached 964 in 1897. With the establishment of independent Lithuania, Liubavas was two kilometers from the border with Poland. A great deal of suffering was caused to the residents of the town as a result of continued clashes that took place in the area between irregular Polish forces and Lithuanians. According to the 1923 census, there were 593 residents in Liubavas of whom 90 (17%) were Jews. Most of them were petty businessmen. At about the same time, a secular Jewish community was established that was helped a great deal with advice from the Ministry of Jewish Affairs in Kovno. On 27 September 1923, elections for the Jewish Community Council were held. Dov Quint received 44 votes; Zvi Kaganski received 42; Shimon Robinson received 40; Yitzhak Prendzel received 32; Ya'akov Meir Kagan received 30; Naftali Goldschmidt received 25 and Zvi Gagan received 8. The first five were elected. On the same day, elections for the National Va'ad [Committee], which was the national representative body of the Jews of Lithuania. The results were as follows: List # 6 – the General Zionists, 35 votes; List # 10 – the 'Achdut' Religious Party, 7; List # 7 – 2 and List # 8 – 1.

Over the years, the number of Jews in Liubavas dwindled and before World War II, only a few families remained. In 1941 with the conquest of Lithuania by the Germans, the Jews of Liubavas were murdered, including Rabbi Elchanan Rosenholtz along with the other Jews of the area.

A native born son of the town was Ephraim Greenberg (1895-1942), the editor of the daily Dos Vort [the Word] in Kovno and a member of the Central Socialist Zionist Party (Tz'S) in Lithuania.

Source – YIVO, Lithuania Community Collection, file 541.

Author of article – Dr. Dov Levin

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