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(Jewish agricultural colony near Kamenets Lithuania (Kamenets de-Lita)
in Brisk (Brest-Litovsk) District (Grodno Gubernia))
Compiled by Sherwin Sokolov
There were three Jewish agricultural colonies Lotovo, Sarovo, and Abramovo formed in the mid-eighteenth century. The colonies were named in honor of the biblical characters, Lot, Sarah, and Abraham, the progenitor/patriarch of the Jewish people. They were located northwest of Kamenets-Litovsk. The first colony established was Lotovo, then Sarovo, and then Abramovo. Lotovo was on the right side of the Kamenets-Abelian Road. Lotovo, was also known as Plisich and no longer exists.
Nikitin states: In 1866, according to the census, there was supposed to be 814 Jewish colonists (census souls) in the Grodno Province, but only 564 were present. The land under settlement by Jews was originally intended to be 6162 hectares (tithes), divided into 354 plots, but in 1866 Jews owned only 2979 hectares in 170 plots in 12 colonies.
Since 1850, there have been three colonies in the Brest District: Lotovo, Sarovo, and Abramovo that counted on paper 182 census souls of Jewish colonists. In reality, these colonies had 135 census souls. By agreement, these colonies received up to 600 hectares (tithes) of land, divided into 35 plots. Jews paid 469 roubles 22 kopeks annually to the Treasury for all land given to them; 20 abandoned hectares were used by remaining settlers.
In particular, Lotovo, that was founded in 1850, was supposed to include 10 families in 1866 with 39 census souls, but in reality it had only 31 souls. In addition, some colonists, even if they were present, spent most of the time in the nearby Kamenetz engaged in different trades. Ten (10) plots of up to 160 hectares were used by peasants to grow crops. Two settlers did not have cattle and three did not have enough cattle. Two colonists did not have agricultural tools. One colonist organized a wine selling business, another one worked as a blacksmith, and a third one had an oil press that brought him up to 300 roubles profit annually.
The revision list of the 10th Russian census in 1858 noted that in the colony of Lotovo there were 29 males and 33 females.
Sefer Yizkor le-Kehilot Kameints de-Lita, Tel Aviv, 1970. Pg. 56. (The Yizkor Book of Kamenets (Lithuania) Community, Zastavia and the Colonies, Tel-Aviv, 1970.)
V. N. Nikitin, Еврейские поселения Северо и Юго-Западных губерний (1835–1890 г.), 1895 (V. N. Nikitin, Jewish Settlements in the North and South-West Provinces (1835 – 1890), 1894)
Народ, который жил среди нас. 2009 (The People Who Lived Among Us, 2014 Translation)
Record Group The Grodno Treasury, #79 Nominal rolls of Jews-farmers settled on state lands near rural village communities and received tax discounts as registered in the revision lists of the 10th census, 1858.
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