Memorial Book of the Sventzian Region

Part I - Life

(Švenčionys, Lithuania)

Translation of
Sefer zikaron le-esrim ve-shalosh kehilot she-nehrevu be-ezor Svintsian

Published by the Yizkor Books in Print Project
part of Yizkor Books Project of JewishGen, Inc.

Original Yizkor Book
Published by the Former Residents of Sventzian in Israel
Published in Tel Aviv, 1965
Editor: Shimon Kantz

Translation Project Coordinator: Anita Gabbay
Layout: Donni Magid
Cover Design: Nina Schwartz
Name Indexing: Jonathan Wind
Part I: Hard Cover, 11” by 8.5”,
930 pages with all original illustrations and photographs.

The translation of the original Yizkor book is contained in two volumes: Part I covers the life in the region before the Shoah; Part II covers the period of the Shoah.



Jews had lived in Svencionys (now Lithuania) since the 14th century.

Between the two world wars, as part of independent Poland, it was the head of a district of 23 towns with sizeable Jewish communities—including Nowo Svencionys, Ignalino, Davgielski, Dukszty, Oduciski, Lingmiany, Lyntupy, Mielegiany, Sojaciszki, Podbrodzie, Koltynany, Kiemieliszki, and Cekinie.

These communities were very active. Svencionys alone had five synagogues, two “seven-year” schools with Yiddish and Hebrew lectures, a Jewish junior high school, a Jewish culture and education association, a library, a theater, a football team and several Zionist groups.

In 1941 the area was occupied by the Germans, and squads of the SS began a systematic campaign of slaughter. On September 27th, 1941, some 8000 Jews from the entire region were taken to a deserted military camp in the woods of Polygon and murdered, among them 3726 from the Sventzian area. A ghetto was established in Svencionys in July 1941; at its peak, it housed some 1,500 Jewish prisoners. In 1943 the Nazis liquidated the ghettos and labor camps in the area. About 4000 Jews from ghettos in Svenciony, Michaliszki and Oszmiana were transported to Ponary near Vilna, where almost all were shot.

There were 23 communities, and they are no more. These two books document in Part I, the lives and in Part II, the deaths of the Jews who lived there, and finally, their heroic struggle to stay alive.

Let us never forget.


Alternate names for the town: Švenčionys [Lith], Sventzion [Yid], Święciany [Pol], Shventsian [Rus], Śvianciany [Bel], Schwintzen [Ger], Švenčoņi [Latv], Svencionyz, Shvintzion, Shvyentsiani, Shvyetsiani, Sventsian, Sventsiany, Swenziany, Svintzian


The town of Sventzian is located in the Sventzian Region in present day Lithuania, at 55°09' N 26°10' E, 47 miles NE of Vilnius


Nearby Jewish Communities:

    Švenčionėliai 7 miles W
    Ceikiniai 9 miles NNE
    Lyntupy, Belarus 9 miles SE
    Kaltanėnai 10 miles NW
    Mielagėnai 13 miles NE
    Linkmenys 13 miles NW
    Ignalina 14 miles N
    Stajetiškė 14 miles E
    Naujasis Daugėliškis 16 miles NNE
    Adutiškis 17 miles E
    Pabradė 18 miles SW
    Joniškis 21 miles WSW
    Svir, Belarus 23 miles SSE
    Mikhalishki, Belarus 23 miles S
    Kamelishki, Belarus 24 miles SSW
    Inturkė 24 miles W
    Tauragnai 25 miles NW
    Vidzy, Belarus 25 miles NE
    Narach, Belarus 25 miles SE
    Pastavy, Belarus 26 miles E
    Bystrytsa, Belarus 27 miles SSW
    Dukštas 27 miles NNE
    Rimše 28 miles NNE
    Dubingiai 29 miles WSW
    Vornyany, Belarus 29 miles S
    Kozyany, Belarus 29 miles ENE
    Salakas 30 miles N
    Molėtai 30 miles W


List price for Part I: $67.95, available from JewishGen for $39

List price for Part II: $67.95, available from JewishGen for $41

The set of both volumes (Part I and Part II) is available at a reduced price from JewishGen for $74


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