Memorial Book to the Martyrs of Voronova

Translation of
sefer zikaron le-kedoshei Voronova she-nispu be-shoat ha-natsim

(Voranava, Belarus)

Published by the Yizkor Books in Print Project
part of Yizkor Books Project of JewishGen, Inc.
Original Yizkor Book Published by Voronova Societies of Israel and the United States: 1971 Israel
Translation Project Coordinator and Editor: Adam Cherson
Cover Design: Nina Schwartz
Layout and Name Indexing: Adam Cherson
Hard Cover, 11” by 8.5”, 528 pages with all original illustrations and photographs.


In 1921, the small town of Voronova, formerly in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth and then the Russian Empire, became part of the Second Polish Republic. Jews had lived here since the 18th century, in a small but active community. Most worked as traders, craftsmen, tanners, carters, and even farmers—their landsleit in America helped them to buy land. There were two synagogues, a study house, a Talmud Torah school, a Tarbut school, a hostel, a poorhouse, and several religious, political, and Zionist groups.

The Germans occupied Voronova in June 1941, starting a reign of terror and murder, forced labor and mass killings. A ghetto was set up in August 1941. In November 1941, the Germans arrested 288 Jewish refugees from Vilna seeking safety in the Voronova Ghetto; they were shot on the spot by Lithuanian auxiliary police.

On January 18, 1942 the remaining Jews of Divenishok, Benakani, Bastuni, Eshishuk, Soletchnik, and other surrounding towns were moved to Voronova. At that time there were about 5,000 Jews in a town normally housing about 2,000 people. The displaced Jews were crammed into houses, sometimes more than 30 at a time, given 125 grams of bread per day and 12 hours per day of hard labor, such as cleaning streets. Then began the liquidation of the Ghetto.

On May 11, 1942, German military police and local auxiliaries entered the town, imprisoned its Jewish residents in the movie theater, then marched them through the town to a nearby gully where more than 1,800 were massacred. Some townsfolk joined the Partisans in nearby forests, exacting revenge against their tormentors. Those who remained in town were later taken to the Lida Ghetto, and finally to Majdanek, where they were killed. Though there is no more Jewish community of Voronova, it lives in these pages.

Alternate names for the town: Voranava [Bel], Voronovo [Rus], Woronów [Pol], Voronova [Yid], Varanavas [Lith], Voranova, Voronov, Voronove, Werenów, Woronowo, Woranawa

Voranava, Belarus is located at 54°09' N 25°20' E 18 miles N of Lida


Nearby Jewish Communities:

Byenyakoni 7 miles N
Šalčininkai, Lithuania 11 miles N
Dieveniškės, Lithuania 12 miles ENE
Eišiškes, Lithuania 14 miles W
Radun 15 miles WSW
Lipnishki 15 miles SE
Lida 18 miles S
Jašiunai, Lithuania 21 miles N
Iwye 23 miles SE
Gav'ya 23 miles SSE
Traby 24 miles E
Laibiškės, Lithuania 24 miles NNE
Valkininkai, Lithuania 24 miles NW
Degsnės, Lithuania 26 miles NW
Halshany 28 miles ENE
Rudamina, Lithuania 30 miles N
Ashmyany 30 miles NE


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