Friday, 20 October 2017


ESTER MILER (b. 1896)
            The sister of Shmuel-Nisn Godiner, she was born in Telekhan (Telekhany), Minsk region, Byelorussia.  She received a traditional Jewish education with her father (an itinerant school teacher).  Over the years 1910-1913, she lived in Warsaw, studied in a Russian school, and later immigrated to the United States.  She debuted in print with a story in Haynt (Today) in Warsaw in late 1912, and later for a long period of time she did not write; from 1950 she once again became active in writing.  She contributed from time to time to Yidishe kultur (Jewish culture) in New York.  In book form: Fun telekhan keyn amerike (From Telekhany to America), autobiographical sketches and impressions, four parts (New York, 1956), 410 pp., with a foreword by Z. Vaynper; Af amerikaner vegn (Along American roads) (Tel Aviv: Oyfkum, 1968), 415 pp.  He also wrote the essay “Mayn bruder shmuel” (My brother Shmuel) which was included as a preface to Sh. Godiner’s volume Zaveler trakt (Zavel highway) (New York, 1950), pp. 7-13.  She was last living in Los Angeles, California.

Sources: Y. Sh. Beylin, in Morgn-frayhayt (New York) (June 12, 1956); Y. Frid, in Zamlungen (New York) 10 (pp. 94-96); biography of Shmuel Godiner, in this anthology (
Khayim Leyb Fuks

[Additional information from: Berl Kagan, comp., Leksikon fun yidish-shraybers (Biographical dictionary of Yiddish writers) (New York, 1986), col. 373.]


SHMUEL L. MILNER (SIMON L. MILLNER) (May 5, 1882-January 15, 1952)
            The brother of Yoysef Milner, he was born in Moscow.  He received an education influenced by the Jewish Enlightenment and secular education in public schools.  In 1907 he graduated from Berne University in Switzerland with a doctoral degree in law.  He was a delegate to the sixth Zionist congress in Basel and was a delegate later to other Zionist congresses.  In 1902 he published in Hameasef (The collector) in St. Petersburg his piece “Lekorot hayehudim beḥelm” (History of Jewish in Chełm [birthplace of his parents]).  He served as a correspondent for Hamelits (The spectator).  He contributed as well to: Hashavua (The week) in Cracow; the London-based Hadegel (The banner) and Hameorer (The awakening), edited by Y. Ḥ. Brener; Hatsfira (The times) in Warsaw; and the Bern socialist Tageszeitung (Daily newspaper).  In 1904, together with Dr. Y. Zalkind, he founded in Berne the Hebrew-language journal Tsiyon (Zion)—only one issue appeared.  He went on to be editor of the daily Unzer leben (Our life) in Warsaw (1910-1912).  In 1913 he published in Lublin the book Der elfter tsienistisher kongres (The eleventh Zionist congress), 87 pp.  In the years between the two world wars, he lived in Holland and England.  In 1938 he moved to the United States.  There he devoted himself to research on Baruch Spinoza and to the popularization of the plastic arts.  He cofounded the art publisher Machmadim in New York, and he served as president of the Spinoza Foundation.  Among his art monographs was his The Face of Benedictus Spinoza (New York: Machmadim, 1946), 51 pp., and a shorter monographs: Ernst Josephson (1948); Faces from the Ghetto (1946), about Abraham Walkowitz; Isaac Lichtenstein (1949); Lesser Uri (1943, in Hebrew).  He was the American representative and editor of the art journal Gazit (Hewn stone).

Sources: Evreiskaia Entsiklopedia (Jewish encyclopedia), vol. XV, p. 657; Hadoar (New York) (Shevat 5 [= February 1], 1952); A. Z-k (Avrom Zak), in Arbeter-vort (Paris) (January 1952); Zak, In friling fun a lebn (In the spring of a life) (Buenos Aires, 1962); archives of the publisher Machmadim in New York; written information from his brother Yoysef Milner and oral information from Yitskhok Likhtenshteyn in New York.
Zaynvl Diamant


YITSKHOK MILNER (d. July 2, 1928)
            At the start of the twentieth century, he was a book dealer in Krugersdorp, Transvaal.  The first issue of Hakokhav (The star), edited by Y. M. Traub in Johannesburg, dated June 14, 1903, carried a poem by him entitled “Tsum yudishen shtern” (To the Yiddish star), meaning to Hakokhav: “They are welcome, new stars, / Apparently lost their way / ….  We are close to the edge. / It takes days in the East / And night soon comes to an end. / Mother misses us / And reaches out to us with her hands.”  Milner later published poems in other Yiddish newspapers and literary publications in South Africa as well—mainly Der afrikaner (The African).  He died in Krugersdorp, South Africa.

Sources: Zalmen Reyzen, Leksikon, vol. 2; Y. Sh. Yudelovits, in Dorem-afrike (Johannesburg) (May 1950); L. Feldman, Yidn in dorem-afrike (Jews in South Africa) (Johannesburg, 1956), pp. 176, 291.
Zaynvl Diamant


YOYSEF MILNER (September 19, 1887-February 5, 1963)
            He was born in Khelm (Chełm), Poland, a son of the Hebrew writer Yehuda-Leib Milner.  He received an education influenced by the Jewish Enlightenment, and secular subject matter he acquired in the Chełm Russian high school.  In 1905 he left for Switzerland, where he spent a year studying at Berne University.  He published correspondence pieces in Fraynd (Friend) in St. Petersburg (1903) and a story in Hamelits (The spectator).  In 1905 he published articles in the daily newspaper Der veg (The way), edited by Tsvi Prilucki in Warsaw.  In 1906 he arrived in Paris, and from there he sent correspondence pieces to Haolam (The world) and articles to Hazman (The times).  In 1908 he departed for the land of Israel.  He was a contributor to Hatsvi (The gazelle), edited by Eliezer Ben Yehuda, D. Frishman’s Reshafim (Sparks), and Haolam, edited by Leib Yafe in Vilna.  Returning to France in 1909, he studied at the University of Toulouse, where in 1912 he graduated with a degree in chemical engineering.  He did research in the archives in southern France, where there had once been thriving Jewish communities, and he published historical essays on the Jews of France in the Vilna-based Had-hazman (Echo of the times), edited by Ben-Tsiyon Kats.  He served as correspondent for Razsvet (Dawn) and wrote as well for Moment (Moment) and Unzer lebn (Our life) in Warsaw, among others.  From 1930 he was contributing work to Parizer haynt (Parisian today), edited by Sh. Y. Yatskan, in which (1934-1940) he was in charge of the daily sections “Kleynikeytn” (Trifles) and “Farbeygeyendik” (In stride).  At the time of the dreadful dangers of deportation and annihilation in WWII, he was active in illegal relief work, for which after liberation the French government awarded him the Reconnaisance Français Medal.  He published (in his own name and using the pen names Ben-Yehuda and Yosef Kimḥi) articles on historical and literary topics in: Unzer vort (Our word), Tsienistishe shtime (Zionist voice), Tsienistishe bleter (Zionist pages), Arbeter-vort (Workers’ word), Frayland (Freeland), Yid un velt (Jew and world), and Maḥberet (Notebook)—all in Paris; Haboker (This morning) in Tel Aviv; Dorem-afrike (South Africa) in Johannesburg; and in French in Le Monde, Juif, La Terre Retrouvée, and Journal de la Communauté.  He served as editor-in-chief of the weekly newspaper La Tribune.  In book form: Yidn in frankraykh (Jews in France) (Paris: Kiem, 1953), 140 pp., with a preface by Yisroel Yefroykin.  He was a member of the editorial board of the literary serial Almanakh, pariz—1955 (Almanac, Paris—1955), published by the Association of Jewish Writers and Journalists in France, in which he contributed the works: “Yidn in belgye” (Jews in Belgium), pp. 55-71; and “Umgekumene shrayber” (Murdered writers), pp. 291-99.  In Dos bukh fun Lublin (The book of Lublin) (Paris, 1952), he placed his “Ir veam beyisrael” (City and people in Israel), pp. 19-24.  He was a member of the editorial committee for Yizker-bukh khelm (Remembrance volume for Chełm) (Johannesburg, 1954).  His seventieth birthday was marked in Paris with celebrations and articles in the press.  He was president of the Zionist Organization of France and of the Association of Jewish Writers and Journalists in Paris.  He died in Paris.

Sources: Y. Yefroykin, preface to Yidn in frankraykh (Jews in France) (Paris: Kiem, 1953); M. Felin, in Dorem-afrike (Johannesburg) (November 1953); Dr. Y. Tsineman, in Kiem (Paris) 61 (1953); B. Tshubinski, in Tsukunft (New York) (December 1953); M. Shinar, in Nayland (Tel Aviv) (April 2, 1954); M. Shtrigler, in Idisher kemfer (New York) (August 7, 1954); Yizker-bukh khelm (Remembrance volume for Chełm) (Johannesburg, 1954), cols. 683-84, 689-90, 709-10, 711-12; M. Dluzhnovski, in Kultur un dertsiung (New York) (March 1958); A. Goldberg, in Kultur un dertsiung (January 1963); L. Leneman, in Forverts (New York) (February 9, 1963); Unzer kiem (Paris) (March 1963), dedicated to the memory of Yoysef Milner.
Zaynvl Diamant


SHMUEL MILMAN (October 26, 1896-July 19, 1983)
            He was born in Lodz, Poland.  He attended religious elementary school and a Russian public school.  In his youth he worked as a sign painter.  Until WWII he was active in the Lodz committee of the Bund.  For many years he was a Bundist city councilman and municipal councilor to city hall in Lodz.  He was secretary of the national council of Jewish trade unions in Poland and a member of senior council of the general textile union in Lodz.  When the Nazis invaded Poland in 1939, he escaped to Vilna and from there (over Soviet Russia and Japan) made his in late 1940 to the United States.  He was executive secretary of the American ORT (Association for the Promotion of Skilled Trades) and visited Latin America, Europe, and the state of Israel on its behalf.  He wrote correspondence pieces on Jewish workers’ lives in Lodz for Lebens-fragen (Life issues) in Warsaw (1916), and he later contributed to: Lodzher veker (Lodz alarm) (1921-1938); Folkstsaytung (People’s newspaper), Dos profesyonele lebn (The trade union life), and Der sherer-arbeter (The barber) in Lodz; Unzer tsayt (Our times) and Doyres bundistn (Generations of Bundists) in New York; Keneder odler (Canadian eagle) in Montreal; Foroys (Onward), Der veg (The way), and Di shtime (The voice) in Mexico City; Unzer shtime (Our voice) in Paris; Lodzher yizker-bukh (Lodz remembrance volume) (New York, 1943), pp. 11-46; the revived Folkstsaytung in Warsaw-Lodz (1946-1948); Historisher zamlbukh (Historical anthology), fiftieth anniversary of the Bund (Warsaw, 1947), pp. 60-62.  He died in New York.

Sources: Khayim Leyb Fuks, in Unzer shtime (Paris) (July 12, 1955); Fuks, in Fun noentn over (New York) 3 (1957), see index; Y. Sh. Herts, Di geshikhte fun bund in lodz (The history of the Bund in Lodz) (New York, 1958), see index; A. V. Yasni, Di geshikhte fun yidn in di yorn fun der daytsher yidn-oysrotung (The history of Jews in the years of the Germany extermination of Jews) (Tel Aviv, 1960), see index; Y. Yeshurin, Arbeter-ring boyer un tuer (Builders and leaders of the Workmen’s Circle) (New York, 1962), p. 237; Biblyografye fun yidishe bikher vegn khurbn un gvure (Bibliography of Yiddish books concerning the Holocaust and heroism) (New York, 1962), see index.
Khayim Leyb Fuks


SHLOYME MILLER (1859-April 25, 1933)
            He was born in Vag-Ohel (?), Hungary, son of the rabbi of Setchin.  He studied with his father and in the Presburg yeshiva.  In 1878 he became rabbi in Setchin.  He was the author of such religious works (in Hebrew-Aramaic and stylized Yiddish) as: Likute tsvi (Tsvi’s collections), “judgments and Mishnahs and prayers” (Paks, 1910), 48 pp.; Ḥovat nashim (Obligations of women), “judgments that a woman is obligated to follow, challah, menstruation, blessing over the candles” (Paks, 1912), 40 pp.; Minḥa belula (Prayers regarding mixtures), “judgments and customs regarding the Sabbath and holidays” (Veizen, 1913), 48 pp.; Sidur shevaḥ shabat (Prayer book in praise of the Sabbath), “the order of the prayers and hymns on Friday night” (Veizen, 1913), 286 pp.  He also translated into stylized Yiddish the anonymous 1795 religious work Ḥovat nashim (“all the manners which have an established time at which women must attend to them”), published in numerous editions in Hungary, Galicia, and Poland, the last ones in Veizen (1937) and Budapest (1945).  He also wrote emendations to his father’s texts, Ḥavatselet hasharon (The lily of Sharon) and Avne ḥoshen (Stones on the [High Priest’s] breastplat).  He died in Sighet, Hungary.

Sources: Zalmen Reysen, Leksikon, vol. 2; Y. Y. Grinvald, Peere ḥakhmat medinotenu (Greatness of the wisdom of our states) (Sighet, 1912); Ohale shem (The tents of Shem) (Pinsk, 1912), p. 428; Avraham Shtern, Melitse esh (Flickers of fire), vol. 3 (Vranov, 1938), p. 72; Bet eked sefarim.
Khayim Leyb Fuks


            He was born in Ohel, Slovakian Hungary, into a rabbinical family.  He attended yeshivas and in 1908 became rabbi of Parkasd, near Budapest.  He led the struggle against the Reform movement, which had gained strength in Hungary at that time.  He authored religious texts in Hebrew-Aramaic.  In stylized Yiddish, he wrote: Veda ma shetashiv (And know what to answer [a heretic]), a discussion with a Reform advocate (Veizen, 1909), 32 pp.; and Lashon limudim (Language of study), “the way to teach Jewish children respect at home, in synagogue, and among people” (Veizen, 1910), 64 pp.

Sources: Zalmen Reyzen, Leksikon, vol. 2; Y. Y. Grinvald, Peere ḥakhmat medinotenu (Greatness of the wisdom of our states) (Sighet, 1912).
Khayim Leyb Fuks