Friday, 30 May 2014

YOYSEF-KHAYIM AYZNBERG

YOYSEF-KHAYIM AYZNBERG (1899-1943)
Born in Shedlets (Siedlce), Poland, and was a contributor to Shedletser vokhnblat (Shedlets weekly press) which began publication in 1922.  He was also one of the writers and contributors to the journal Vortslen (Roots) which commenced publication in January 1927.  He was the author of a dramatic poem: Di letste teg fun dovid (The last days of David) (Shedlets, 1937), 64 pp.  He was murdered in the Shedlets ghetto.

Sources: M. D. Shteyn, in Bafrayung (Warsaw) (February 18, 1938); Y. Kaspi, in Yivo-bleter 36 (1952).


ARN AYZNBAKH (ARTUR EISENBACH)

ARN AYZNBAKH (ARTUR EISENBACH) (April 7, 1906-1992)
Born in Nay-sants (Nowy Sącz), Galicia, into a well-to-do family in business.  He graduated in 1920 from a public school, and in 1923 he graduated from the commercial academy in Krakow.  He then began to study at the Jewish Educational Seminary in Vilna, but he had to discontinue his studies due to financial difficulties.  In 1931 he passed the high school course in Bilits (Bielsko).  He studied Germanic studies and history first in Krakow and later in Warsaw (under Marceli Handelsman).  From an early age, he demonstrated an interest in Jewish folklore and philology.  He occupied himself with research into the Yiddish and Hebrew elements in the Polish language.  In 1935 he was a YIVO researcher for a term.  He worked on the history of Jews in the Duchy of Warsaw which was also by the same token the topic of his doctoral thesis under Handelsman.  A small piece of this work was published in Yivo-bleter (Leaves from YIVO), vol. 10 (1936), and in the report Yor aspirantur (Research for the year) (Vilna, 1937).  Two chapters were published in Bleter far geshikhte (Pages for history), part 2 (1938), put out by the historians’ circle of YIVO in Warsaw.  One chapter on the structure of the Jewish population of Warsaw in 1810 was published in a Polish bulletin of the Jewish Historical Institute in Warsaw (nos. 13-14, 1955, pp. 73-113).
After WWII, he returned to Warsaw where he became one of the most visible contributors at the Jewish Historical Institute, and a member of the editorial board of its organ, Bleter far geshikhte.  With a few exceptions, he was devoting himself from that point almost entirely to research on the Jewish Holocaust in Poland.  In Bleter far geshikhte, he published a series of pieces on this theme (from vol. 1, 1948), some of which were also published in Polish (in the bulletin as well as separately).  He published methodological articles concerned with problems of researching the period of the Holocaust in Yedies-byuletin fun yidishn historishn institut in poyln (News bulletin from the Jewish Historical Institute in Poland) (Warsaw) (November 1949, 1950).  In his essay, “Tsi iz meglekh visnshaflekh oystsuforshn dem letstn period in der yidisher geshikhte” (Is it possible to scientifically investigate the last period in Jewish history) (Yedies, November 1950), he took a stand against Y. Shatski’s article on the same matter (in Problemen, Paris, no. 3-4, 1950), and declared himself a historical materialist contrary to Shatski’s “historical realism.”  The articles were also published in the Polish bulletin.  He also wrote under the pseudonym “Arkhivaroys” (out of the archives).



Artur Eisenbach and his wife


MOYSHE AYZMAN

MOYSHE AYZMAN (1847-April 16, 1893)
He was the brother of the well-known Russian-Jewish writer David Aizman.  Born in Tivrov, Podolia.  At ages sixteen he began devoting himself to a worldly education.  He lived in Voznesensk, Kherson district, and he died there.  He published publicist articles in a number of Hebrew and Russian newspapers.  His work Bifroah peraot beyisrael (In the great disorder of Israel) (1883) dealt with the pogroms in Russia from the early eighteenth century.  He was one of the first preachers on behalf of Chibat Tsiyon.  He wrote in Yiddish for Kol mevaser (The herald) and for Lilienblum’s Veker (Alarm) (1887).

Source: Zalmen Reyzen, Leksikon, vol. 1.


HARI AYZMAN (HARRY EISMANN)

HARI AYZMAN (HARRY EISMANN) (b. December 2, 1915)

Born in Kishinev, Bessarabia.  His father was a house painter.  He studied in religious school.  He became an orphan, losing both parents, and in 1922 he came with his two older sisters to the United States where their brother lived.  He studied there in public school, but he was forced early on to start working.  While still young, he became a member and leader of the Communist “pioneer” organization.  In 1929 he was arrested at a demonstration for slugging a policeman.  He was in a Jewish disciplinary institution for “spoiled” boys.  He left the United States in 1930 and settled in the Soviet Union where he published articles in the Yiddish and Russian press.  He also published several brochures in Yiddish, Russian, and English.  During the war against the Nazis, he served as an officer in the Red Army.  His subsequent career is unknown.  Among his books: Gezerd un internatsyonale kinder-dertsiung (GEZERD [All-Union Association for the Agricultural Settlement of Jewish Workers in the USSR] and international children’s stories), on the tenth inter-ethnic children’s week, together with N. Levin (Moscow, 1930), 28 pp.; Komyugist, gedenk di friling-parzey-kampanye un di kolektivizatsye (Komyugist [Komsomol member], remembering the spring sowing campaign and collectivization) (Moscow, 1930), 31 pp.; Khausorn (Defect) (Kiev, 1934), 120 pp.

Thursday, 29 May 2014

RUVN AYZLAND (REUBEN EISLAND)

RUVN AYZLAND (REUBEN EISLAND) (April 29, 1884-June 18, 1955)
Born in Gross-Radomysl (Pol. Radomyśl Wielki), Western Galicia.  He studied in religious schools, at home, and in the synagogue study hall.  He began writing Hebrew poetry in 1900—Snunit (Swallow) (Jerusalem)—and Yiddish in 1904 in Teglekher herald (Daily herald) in New York.  He came to the United States in September 1903.  He published poems and stories in: Tsukunft (Future), Literatur (Literature), Shriftn (Writings), Der indzl (The island), and Der firer (The leader), among others.  He was the editor of the journal, Literatur un lebn (Literature and life) (1915); he was editor with Mani Leyb of the journal, Der indzl (March 1925-June 1926).  From 1918 he was a regular contributor to Tog (Day), and later to Tog morgn-zhurnal (Morning journal).  Among his books: Fun mayn zumer (From my summer), poetry (Vienna and New York, 1922), 72 pp.; Dos gezang fun hirsh (Song of the stag), poetry (New York, 1944); Fun undzer friling (From our spring), memoirs and essays (Miami Beach and New York, 1954).  He translated the entire series of poems, Tsofn-yam (North Sea) [Die Nordsee by Heinrich Heine], and four volumes of prose by Heine; On a foterland (Without a fatherland) [De uden Fædreland by Herman Bang], a novel (New York, 1920), 363 pp.; Frateli bedini (Fratelli bedini) [Fratelli Bedini by Herman Bang], a novella (New York, 1919), 55 pp.; poetry by Richard Dehmel, M. Dauthendey, Nietzsche, and Robert Louis Stevenson, among others.  From Chinese poets, works by: Su Dongpo, Du Fu, Zhuangzi, as well as others.  He also wrote a drama entitled R’ asher kahane (Rabbi Asher Kahane).  He was one of the founders of the group known as “Yunge” (Young ones).  He occupied a distinguished place in modern Yiddish lyric poetry, especially in the softer, quieter, clearer, and more descriptive—emotional lyrical—poetry.  He was ill in his last years, withdrawing from journalistic activities and settling in Miami Beach where he died in 1955.




Sources: Zalmen Reyzen, Leksikon, vol. 1; Gershom Bader, Medina veḥakhameha (The land and its wisdom) (New York, 1934); Shmuel Niger, in Dos naye lebn (The new life) (October 1922); N. Shteynberg, Yung-amerike (Young America) (New York, 1930), pp. 183-200; B. Bialostotski, Lider un eseyen (Poems and essays) (New York, 1932); B. Ts. Goldberg, in Tog (July 6, 7, 8, and 27, 1954); Y. Botoshanski, in Di naye tsayt (Buenos Aires) (July 19, 1954); Yankev Glatshteyn, in Yidisher kemfer (1954); N. Mayzil, in Yidishe kultur (June, July, August, 1954); obituaries in Yiddish newspapers in New York (June 20, 1955); M. Unger, in Tog morgn-zhurnal (July 3, 1955).

F. AYZIKOVITSH

F. AYZIKOVITSH
He hailed from Warsaw.  He brought together a collection of stories and jokes from Hershele Ostropolyer (published in several editions, Warsaw), entitled R. hershele esterpoler (R. Hershele Ostropoler) (Warsaw: Tarmid), 2 parts, 24 pp. and 28 pp.; and he was the author of a booklet entitled Der nayer telegraf (The new telegraph) (Warsaw), 32 pp.  He published under the name F. A.

Source: Noyekh Prilyucki, Mame-loshn (Mother tongue) (Warsaw, 1921).


FROYM AYZIKOVITSH

FROYM AYZIKOVITSH (EPHRAIM AYSIKOWITCHI) (October 15, 1901-March 12, 1974)
He was poet and storyteller, born in Leovo (Leova), Bessarabia, into a poor family.  He studied in religious school; he was employed in a shop as a youngster, and later he became a factory worker.  At age twelve he moved to Odessa, later moving on to Kishinev, where he worked by day and studied by night.  In 1919 he sat for his baccalaureate examinations.  He studied medicine at Bucharest University, and from 1927 he was a practicing physician.  He was active among the left Labor Zionists.  During WWII he served as a military doctor in Transnistria.  Having survived the war, he returned to Bucharest in 1946, and in 1957 made aliya to Israel.  After the war he began publishing stories and poetry in Yiddish periodicals in Romania.  Among his books: Tunkl un likht (Darkness and light), poetry (Bucharest, 1948); Afn veg, lider (On the road, poems) (Bucharest, 1950), 78 pp.; Shpurn, af di khurves fun der yidisher besarabye (Footprints, in the ruins of Jewish Bessarabia) (Tel Aviv, 1958), 44 pp.; Lider (Poems) (Tel Aviv: Puli, 1962), 255 pp.; Vi andersh, nekhtn un haynt (Like others, yesterday and today), stories (Bnei-Brak, 1967), 266 pp., containing fragments of a novel; S’iz mir bashert, lider (Destined for me, poems) (Bnei-Brak, 1969), 50 pp.  He also wrote stories, published in Ikuf-bleter (Pages from IKUF) (Bucharest, 1948).

Source: Y. Horovits, in Ikuf-bleter (Bucharest), no. 69 (1949); information from Ayzikovitsh’s daughter Rokhl Levin; Pekelman-Fortuna, in Undzer bleter (Tel Aviv) (December 1960); Kh. Slutski-Kestin, in Fray yisroel (Tel Aviv) (November 1969).

Reuven Goldberg

YISROEL AYZ

YISROEL AYZ (September 16, 1876-December 1944)
Born in Ustriki, Galicia.  He began published when he was fifteen in Mekhazikei hadat (Strengtheners of the faith); later in Hamitspeh (The watch tower) in Krakow, Bat kol (Heavenly voice), Hamizrachi (The easterner), Hamodiya haderech (Informant of the way), Kol yisrael (Voice of Israel), Moriyah (Mount Moriah) in Frankfurt, Der tog (The day) in Krakow, Der yid (The Jew) in Warsaw, Dos yidishe tageblat (The Jewish daily), and others.  He was a cofounder of “Mizrachi” and later joined Agudat Yisrael.  He died in Zurich, Switzerland.

Source: Information from Rabbi M. Shvartsman (Winnipeg).


Wednesday, 28 May 2014

DOVID EYDELSBERG (DAVID EIDELSBERG)

DOVID EYDELSBERG (DAVID EIDELSBERG) (April 28, 1893-December 8, 1963)
Born in Stashev (Staszów), Poland.  He studied in religious school, and in 1909 he became a teacher of Bible in a high school for girls (progimnazye).  In 1910 he published articles in Lodzher tageblat (Lodz daily).  In 1914 he came to the United States.  He taught in a high school and a college in Cleveland.  From 1916 he contributed to and later became managing editor of Yidishe velt (Jewish world) in Cleveland; later he was news editor for Tageblat (Daily) and Morgn-zhurnal (Morning journal) in New York, and he published a great number of essays on general Jewish and religious matters, as well as regular columns in the Hebrew supplement to Tageblat and Hayom (Today); and he contributed to English-Yiddish newspapers.  Among his books: Yisroel un ire golesn (Israel and its diasporas) (New York, 1953), 336 pp., and he revised the majority of Oytser fun ale medroshim (Treasury from all the midrashim), published by Y. Zevin, 3 volumes (New York, 1926).  He also translated into Yiddish a series of short stories by Jack London.  Among the pen names he used: D. Volfson, A. Karliner, Izmal.  He was a regular contributor to Tog morgn-zhurnal (Daily morning journal).  He lived in Brooklyn, New York, and died in the Bronx.

Sources: Zalmen Reyzen, Leksikon, vol. 1; R. Avrom Hefterman, in Tog morgn-zhurnal (August 1953); Yankev Glatshteyn, in Amerikaner (November 1953); Y. Morgenshtern, in Hapardes (March 1953); Sh. Izban, in Mizrakhi-veg (Tishrei, 1954).


KHAYIM-YOYSEF EYDELMAN (CHAIM JOSEF AJDELMAN)

KHAYIM-YOYSEF EYDELMAN (CHAIM JOSEF AJDELMAN)
He was the author of Zelbstmord in di hayntike tsaytn in likht fun geheyme visnshaft (Suicide in contemporary times in light of secret knowledge) (Warsaw, 1932), 127 pp.  Writing as “Prof. Eydelman,” he was the author of Tsi lebt men nokhn toyt, tsi eksistirn sheydim, di entshteyung fun religye un obergloybn (Is there life after death, do ghosts exist? The rise of religion and superstition) (Warsaw, 1928), 33 pp.

ELBERT EYDLIN-TROMER (AIDLINE-TROMMER)

ELBERT EYDLIN-TROMER (AIDLINE-TROMMER) (April 14, 1888-August 8, 1957)
     Born in Krementshug, Ukraine.  He graduated from secondary school, studying Jewish subjects with a private teacher.  In 1905 he emigrated to the United States with his parents.  He worked under difficult conditions and studied in New York.  In 1911 he graduated as a civil engineer.  With short interruptions, he worked through 1953 for the company of the New York subway system.  He began publishing poems in English in 1913.  In 1915 he began to contribute to Tog (Day).  He also contributed to: Tageblat (Daily), Tsukunft (Future), and Der groyser kundes (The great prankster).  He published literary reviews and treatises on the history of Jews in the United States; translations from such American poets as Whittier, Longfellow, Walt Whitman, and Poe; humorous stories of immigrant life; interviews with Blasco Ibáñez, Leopold Auer, and Enrico Caruso, among others.  At the same time he was publishing in English-language newspapers.  During WWII, he translated Yiddish poems into Russian for Russian-language newspapers in America.  From 1916 he edited and co-edited a series of English-Yiddish periodicals.  In 1948 he was awarded a prize from Schocken Press for an English translation of Yiddish jokes.  He used such pseudonyms as: Dr. L. B. Lazarus and Leon Elmer.  In Yiddish he published under the name Khayim-Leyzer Trembitski Tromer.  He lived in Brooklyn, New York.

TUVYE-BOREKH (THOMAS B.) EYGES

TUVYE-BOREKH (THOMAS B.) EYGES (March 15, 1875-1960)

Born in Vilna.  His father was the head bookkeeper for Menashe Heyman’s bank in Vilna, and in 1880 he left for Moscow.  For nine years he studied privately with a rabbi, later graduating from the sixth class of Aleksander’s Artisanal School.  At age sixteen he was in a secular high school, but one year later he was barred from it due to severe anti-Jewish laws.  He then moved to London where he worked in a shoe factory and was secretary of the Jewish “Boot and Shoe Union.”  Two years later he became a member of the group, “Arbayter fraynd” (Workers’ friend).  He began to write articles in Arbayter fraynd, and he contributed to supporting the radical Hagode shel peysekh (Haggadah of Passover).  He came to the United States at the end of 1900 and settled in Boston.  For a period of three years, he traveled around the country, buying books and giving lectures.  He ran a weekly column in Fraye arbiter shtime (Free voice of labor) under the name “Correspondences from a traveler” which he signed “tet-alef” [Tuvye Eyges].  In the Boston edition of Forverts (Forward), he published a series entitled “Interesting corners of Boston,” and in the Boston Der yidisher firer (The Jewish leader) he wrote fifteen articles entitled “The history of New England.”  He translated from Russian into English the four-act drama by Stepniak entitled “The New Convert” which was published by The Stratford Co., Boston (1917), with a foreword about Stepniak and P. Kropotkin.

Monday, 26 May 2014

WILLIAM ABRAMS

WILLIAM ABRAMS (February 19, 1894-1969)
His Jewish given name was Velvl-Dovid.  He was born in Shavel (Šiauliai), Kovno district, into a family of cobblers.  He studied in religious schools and in the municipal school (gorodskoye uchilishche).  At age eleven, he began working in a factory.  He later became a member of Yugnt-Bund (youth wing of the Bund).  He came to the United States at the end of 1912, and he worked offloading cargo wagons, in a city foundry, at a furrier’s shop, and longer than elsewhere for a tailor.  He came active in the amalgamated unions and in the Socialist Party.  In 1917-1918 he organized the Arts Circle (together with Moyshe Shulvays and Sh. Daysel).  In 1918 he published in a radical periodical an essay under the pseudonym “Petronius.”  In 1920 he began publishing essays about the male tailors in New York and their leaders in the Communist weekly Kamf (Struggle).  He published article in 1922 concerned with union issues in the weekly Emes (Truth).  From 1924 to 1943 he was a consistent contributor to Frayhayt (Freedom).  He also published articles in Hamer (Hammer, New York), Emes (Moscow), Shtern (Stars, Kharkov), and Prese (Press, Paris), as well as in Argentinian and Canadian newspapers.  Among his pen names were: Slim Vili (Slim Willie), Dovid Marba, Rokhl Veyner, Dovid Mayerson, and Vov-alef [his initials].  Among his books are the following: Di yidishe arbeter-bavengung in di fareynikte shtatn fun tsofn-amerike (The Jewish workers’ movement in the United States of North America) (Kharkov, 1930) with a foreword by Shakhne Epshteyn; A patsh, dertseylung (A slap, story) (New York, 1933), 31 pp.; Revolutsyonerer deklamator (Revolutionary declamations), collected and edited with Kalmen Marmor (New York, 1933), 329 pp.; Ikh ney un ney (I sew and sew) (New York, 1936), 223 pp.; Hirsh lekert (New York, 1938), 32 pp.  He edited (with editorial colleagues): Yunyon skver (Union Square) (Proletpen collection, New York, 1930); Signal (Proletpen journal, New York, 1933-1938); Mir (We), together with Menke Kats and Yankev Stadolski (New York, 1944).

Sources: Shmuel Niger, in Tog (New York) (1926); M. Olgin, in Morgn-frayhayt (March 2, 1931), in Hamer (March-April 1931), and in Morgn-frayhayt (May 1937); Y. B. Beylin, in Hamer (October 1933), and in Morgn-frayhayt (1936); M. Nadir, in Morgn-frayhayt (May 16, 1932); Martin Birnboym, in Morgn-frayhayt (April 28, 1932); A. Pomerantz, Proletpen (Proletarian pen) (Kiev, 1935), pp. 193-94; N. Y. Gotlib, in Yidisher kuryer (December 26, 1937).


NOKHUM (NACHUM, N.) AYBESHITS

NOKHUM (NACHUM, N.) AYBESHITS (b. 1900)
He lived in Warsaw between the two world wars.  He translated Friedrich Nietzsche’s Ecce homo as Vi m’vert, vos men iz (Warsaw, 1929), 152 pp.; and of Dionysos-Dithyramben as Dionizos-difirambn (Warsaw, 1929), 49 pp.  He died in the Warsaw ghetto.

Sources: Y. Turkov, Azoy is es geven (That’s how it was) (Buenos Aires, 1948), p. 245; Ber Mark, “Umgekumene shrayber fun di getos un lagern” (Murdered writers from the ghettos and camps), Dos naye velt, no. 30 (311) (1949); Literarishe bleter (April 19, 1929).


AVROM-ARN EYBERMAN

AVROM-ARN EYBERMAN
By trade a watchmaker, he was a Zionist activist who lived in Buenos Aires and other regions of Argentina.  Yankev Yoselovitsh, who in 1908 founded the monthly Di yidishe hofnung (Jewish hope)—later a biweekly, in 1912 a weekly, in 1917 with the name change to Di yidishe velt (The Jewish world)—coopted him onto the editorial board.  He was the technical editor, copyeditor, and also the author of articles.  He apparently died in the 1930s in Buenos Aires.

Source: M. Rozovski, Geklibene shrift (Collected writings) (Buenos Aires, 1947).


KHAYKE EYBELSON (CHAIKE ABELSON)

KHAYKE EYBELSON (CHAIKE ABELSON) (b. March 12, 1915)
Born in New Haven, Connecticut, daughter of the poet Abe Abelson.  She studied in Workmen’s Circle schools, public school, high school, and Hunter College in New York.  As a child she began to write Yiddish poetry.  She contributed to Hemshekh (lit., “Continuation”), collection 4, and Di goldene keyt (The golden chain), no. 21 (1955).  She authored Ershte lider (First poems) (New York, 1931), 59 pp.

Source: Hemshekh antologye (Hemshekh anthology) (New York, 1945), p. 349.


Sunday, 25 May 2014

Y. ITKIN

Y. ITKIN

He was a reporter who wrote for the Riga daily newspaper Dos folk (The people) (1926).  He later moved to the Riga daily, Frimorgn (Morning).  He is mentioned in the book: 25 yor yidishe prese in letland (25 years of the Yiddish press in Latvia) by M. Gerts (Riga, 1933), p. 44.

AVROM-LEYB ITKIN

AVROM-LEYB ITKIN (1870-1936)

Most biographical details unknown.  We only know that until 1936 he was living in Lodz, where he died, and that he published fables, light humorous poems in Lodzher tageblat (Lodz daily) and Folksblat (People’s news) in the 1925-1938 period.  He also published Perl fun yam hatalmud (Pearls from the sea of the Talmud) (Lodz, 1927), 16 pp.

M. ITKOVITSH

M[OYSHE] ITKOVITSH (b. 1902)
He was born in Minsk.  He received a traditional Jewish education.  In his youth he worked as an unskilled laborer in Kremenchuk.  He published in Oktyabr (October) in 1922.  He was a translator (from Russian to Yiddish).  He worked as a translator for Emes Publishers, Eynikeyt (Unity), and Sovetish heymland (Soviet homeland).  He translated: B. B. Grave’s Etyudn tsu der geshikhte funem proletaryat in f.s.s.r. (Studies in the history of the proletariat in the USSR) (Moscow, 1933), 283 pp.; Vladimir ilitsh, zamlung fun artiklen un derinerungen (Vladimir Ilyich, collection of articles and memoirs) [by Gleb Maksimilianovich Krzhizhnovskii] (Moscow, 1934); Geshikhte fun altertum, lernbukh farn 5tn un 6tn klas fun der mitlshul (History of antiquity, textbook for fifth and sixth grade in middle school) [by A. V. Mishulin] (Moscow, 1941), 275 pp.  His subsequent fate remains unknown.

Source: Biblyografisher arkhiv fun der yidisher sovetisher literatur (Bibliographic archive of Soviet Yiddish literature) (YIVO, New York); Sovetish heymland, Materyaln far a leksikon fun der yidisher sovetisher literatur (Material for a handbook of Soviet Yiddish literature), in Sovetish heymland (September 1975-).


YANKEV IZRAELSON

YANKEV IZRAELSON (1856-1924)
Born in Mitave (Mitava), Kurland (Courland).  He studied in a religious school, in a secular high school in Libave (Liepāja), and at St. Petersburg University.  He was a well-known Orientalist, a teacher of history, and an expert in Judeo-Arabic history and literature.  He was also a scientific expert during the Beilis Trial.  His work Religyeze ekspertize (Religious expertise) concerning the blood libel accusation against Jews remains in manuscript.  A portion of his literary inheritance was given to YIVO in Vilna.  He was a contributor to Historishe shriftn (Historical writings), vol. 1 (Vilna).  He also contributed to a series of French, German, and Hebrew scholarly publications; and to the Rusish-yidishe entsiklopedye (Russian Jewish encyclopedia) and to Voskhod (Rising).  He translated into Russian the works of Josephus Flavius.  In Yiddish, he wrote a biography of Nosn-Note Hanover: Zayn lebn un literarishe tetikeyt,” Historishe shriftn, vol. 1 (Warsaw, 1929), pp. 1–26, republished in the book Gezerot takh (The massacres of 1648) (Vilna: YIVO, 1938).  He died in Libave.

Sources: Rusish-yidishe entsiklopedye, vol. 9; Algemayne entsiklopedye (General encyclopedia), vol. 2; F. Markan, obituary in Yevreyskaya letopis’ (Jewish chronicle), vol. 4 (1926).


Friday, 23 May 2014

SHOLEM IZRAELIT

SHOLEM IZRAELIT
The place and date of his birth are unknown.  He was a laborer.  During WWI, he served in the Russian army and wrote a war memoir.  He published items in the journal Kultur un bildung (Culture and education) (Moscow, 1918-1920), and among them was a story entitled “Harbst-nakht” (Autumn night).  A book of his was titled Tsevigte koykhes (Swaying force), stories (Moscow, Kharkov, Minsk, 1931), 47 pp.

Sources: B. Orshanski, Di yidishe literatur in vaysrusland nokh der revolutsye (Jewish literature in Byelorussia following the revolution) (Moscow, 1931), p. 238, and in Tsayshrift (Minsk), vol. 5 (1931); Y. Serebriani, in Prolit (October 1931).


LEON IZRAEL

LEON IZRAEL (December 12, 1887-January 12, 1955)
Born in Pinsk, he was a painter and caricaturist.  He studied in religious schools as well as in a Russian school.  He came to the United States in 1905.  In 1909 he published, using the pseudonym Lolo, his first caricature—of Yankev Gordin in Der groyser kundes (The great prankster).  He later contributed work as a draftsman for various newspapers and journals.  In his last years, he was the regular caricaturist for the Forverts (Forward).  He illustrated a number of Yiddish books.  In 1953 he published an album of eighty pictures, Di amoliker ist said in bilder (The East Side of the past in pictures) with a forward by Dovid Einhorn.  A number of his caricatures were reprinted in English periodical publications.  In 1912 he received an award from the national artists academy in New York.

Source: Hilel Rogof, Der gayst fun forverts (The spirit of the Forverts) (New York, 1954), p. 261.


YISROEL-DOVID IZRAEL

YISROEL-DOVID IZRAEL (b. 1908)
Born in Sighetu Marmației, Transylvania, Romania.  He studied in religious elementary school and in a Romanian middle school.  Between the two world wars, he edited and published Der oyfgang (The rising), a literary monthly journal, which was published between 1928 and 1938—a total of thirty-seven issues in all.  He also wrote for Yudishe folks-tsaytung (Jewish people’s newspaper) (Cracow-Warsaw).  He died near Stalingrad during his period of exile.

Source: oral information from Dr. Sh. Bikl; Bikl, Rumenye (Romania) (Buenos Aires, 1961), p. 365; D. Shayn, in the trilingual Tsaytshrift (Bucharest) (June 15, 1970); V. Tambur, Yidishe prese in rumenye (Yiddish press in Romania) (Bucharest, 1977), pp. 225-34; Y. Kara, in Morgn frayhayt (New York) (October 23, 1983); information from Nosn Mark, Israel.

Y. Kara

E. IZRA

E. IZRA

His books include: Tsayg, di geshikhte fun tsitsn hemdl (Fabric, the history of a calico shirt) (Kiev, 1928), 77 pp.; Fun feld un tish, geshikhte fun a shtikl broyt (From field and table, history of a piece of bread) (Kiev, 1928), 101 pp.; Shikh un kalishn, fun vos un vi azoy vern zey oysgearbet (Shoes and galoshes, from what and how they are manufactured) (Kiev, 1928), 72 pp.  These may have been translations from Russian.

Thursday, 22 May 2014

ELIYAHU IZGUR

ELIYAHU IZGUR (b. 1882)
Born in Berezina, Byelorussia.  He started publishing in Russian in the provincial press as well as in Byelorussian in Vilna publications after the 1905 Revolution.  In 1904 he published in Yiddish some popular scientific articles in the yearbook Progres (Progress), as well as poems in various periodicals, particularly in Vilna.  In book form: Shlofloze nekht, lider (Sleepless nights, poems), vol. 1 (Warsaw, 1910).

Source: Zalmen Reyzen, Leksikon, vol. 1.


SHIMEN IZBITSER

SHIMEN IZBITSER (1902-August 22, 1937)
Born in Brisk (Brześć) in Lithuania to bourgeois parents.  He received both a Jewish and a general education.  He graduated from a secular high school.  While still very young, he joined the left Labor Zionist party.  Later he belonged to the administration of Borokhov Youth and the left Labor Zionist secretary of ORT, as well as being one of the founders of the Jewish sports movement in Brisk.  He was especially devoted to the Jewish secular school system (Tsisho Tsisho [Central Jewish School Organization]).  He was a board member from the Labor Zionists on the Brisk city council.  In 1933 he left for Palestine where he became a builder, and he was one of the fighters for the rights of the Yiddish language in Palestine.  He began publishing in Yugnt (Youth) (Warsaw, 1922).  He later contributed articles on Jewish and general issues to Arbeter-tsaytung (Workers’ newspaper) (Warsaw, 1922-1937), Naye velt (New World) (Tel Aviv), and other serials.  He died in Tel Aviv.

Sources: Entsiklopedyah shel galuyot, brisk delita (Encyclopedia of the exiles: Brisk of Lithuania) (Jerusalem-Tel Aviv, 1954), pp. 313, 618.


YISROEL (ISRAEL) IZBITS

YISROEL (ISRAEL) IZBITS

He hailed from Russia and lived in Rochester, New York.  He was employed as a Hebrew teacher.  He collected Jewish jokes and folktales that he published in a book entitled Der lustiger hoyz-fraynd, a zamlung fun 450 fersheydene vitsn, satiren un frehlikhe ertseylungen fun barimte mentshn, rabonim un andere khakhomim tsum fergenigen un tsayt-fartrayb far ale klasn, mit a foreyde (The cheerful house-friend, a collection of 450 different jokes, satires, and joyful stories from notable people, rabbis, and other wise men to enjoy pastimes for all classes, with a foreword) (Rochester, New York, 1919), 125 pp.  He was also the author of Amarim mesamkhe lev (Tales from joys of the heart) (Rochester, date unknown).

SHMUEL IZBAN

SHMUEL IZBAN (September 26, 1905-1995)
     His surname was shortened from Izbitski.  Born in Gostinin (Gostynin), Poland, and later moved to Vlotslavek (Włocławek).  He studied in religious schools and in a Hebrew high school.  At age thirteen, he joined Hashomer.  In 1921 he went with his parents to Palestine.  From 1937 he was living in the United States.  He published his first story in 1925: “Alla’s tsorn” (The wrath of Allah), from an Arab tale.  He published stories and literary treatises in Literarishe bleter (Literary pages), Tsukunft (Future), Oyfkum (Arise), Feder (Pen), Haynt (Today), Moment (Moment), Folks-tsaytung (People’s newspaper), Frimorgn (Morning), Vilner tog (Vilna day), Forverts (Forward), Tog (Day), Morgn-zhurnal (Morning journal), Fraye arbeter shitme (Free voice of labor), and many others.  He also published [in Hebrew] in Hayom (Today), Ha’arets (The land), Davar (Word), and Hapoel hatsair (The young worker).  He also contributed to the weekly Naye velt (New world); and co-edited the serials: Eyns (One), Tsvey (Two), Tsvishn tsvey un dray (Between two and three), and Fir (Four); and with Yankev Shtol and Y. Ts. Sharnel, he edited the literary collection, Shtamen (Roots).  From 1943 he was a contributor to Morgn-zhurnal (Morning journal) and later to Tog (Day).  He published fiction, articles, and reportage.  In 1947 he traveled with illegal immigrants to Palestine.  His books include: Masn (Masses), a novel about the first Russian Revolution of 1905 (Vilna, 1929); Nokhn shturem, dertseylungen (After the storm, stories) (Warsaw, 1929); Kver (Crosswise), a novel of WWI (Vilna, 1936); Oyf rushtovanyes (On scaffolding), stories of life in Palestine (Warsaw, 1936); Tsvishn hundert toyern (Among one hundred gates), stories of the lives of Oriental Jews in Jerusalem (New York, 1942), which appeared in a Hebrew translation by M. Lipson; Umlegale yidn shpoltn yamen (Illegal Jews split the seas) (Buenos Aires, 1948), with translations into Hebrew, English, and Spanish; Familye karp (The family Karp), a novel in two volumes about life in Palestine (Buenos Aires, 1949).  In 1936 he received a literary prize for a short story that appeared in the Warsaw serial, Velt shpigl (World mirror); in 1950 he won a prize from the Zvi Kessel Foundation in Mexico; and in 1945 he received a literary prize from Tsukunft in New York.  His various pseudonyms: Sh. Alef, D. Krants, Dr. Leon Turner, A. Feyerman, Sh. Ohel, Sh. Laks, and N. Tankhum.

Sources: Shmuel Niger, in Tog (January 1930, August 28, 1938, May 7, 1939, July 18, 1941); Yitskhok Bashevis, in Tsukunft (June, October 1939); Menakhem Boraysho, in Di vokh (January 10, 1930); Yankev Glatshteyn, in Yidisher kemfer (January 12, 1951); Dr. A. Mukdoni, in Morgn-zhurnal (July 1942, June 1944, August 1, 1948, November 27, 1949).


Wednesday, 21 May 2014

ARN IZAKS (AARON ISAAC, ARON ISAKS)

ARN IZAKS (AARON ISAAC, ARON ISAKS) (1730-1817)
Born (in 1729 according to Y. Tsinberg) in the small town of Treuenbrietzen, not far from Berlin.  He became an orphan at age fourteen after the death of his father, Yitskhok-Ayzik, a poor shopkeeper who was the sole protected Jew in the region and had residential rights.  At an early age he began working as a peddler among the poor farmers.  Not earning enough to make a living from this, he became a seal engraver.  After marrying in 1751, he moved to Bützow (a town in Mecklenburg district), and there he was one of the heads of the Jewish community.  In 1767 he (together with R. Yosef Perochim[?]) was elected to serve as a trustee to attend a convention of community leaders in Brivits [?].  During the Seven Years’ War [1754-1763], he again took up business and was never again successful at it.  In 1774 he settled in Stockholm where he received permission to reside as a court jeweler.  At the time of the Swedish-Russian War [1788-1790], he worked as an army contractor and was an intimate in the royal court of Gustav III.  He was a pioneer of Jewish settlement in Sweden.  He participated in the Stockholm community meetings in 1780 and 1793.
At age seventy-one (1801), following the deaths of his wife and children, he began to write his autobiography which he completed in 1804.  According to his Hebrew introduction, he wrote it “for the next generation, for the children of my people, so that my memories should not be forgotten, so that it should be known that I, Aaron, son of Yitskhok-Ayzik, may his memory be for a blessing, was naturalized in the country of Sweden…”  He wrote the story of his life in the Judeo-German then in use among Prussian Jews.  In a simple style, interspersed with numerous Hebrew-Yiddish words, he painted a picture of a learned Jew of that age, and just as with the memoirs of Glikl of Hameln and Ber Bolekhover, his life story is a contribution to the study of Jewish history from that era.  His autobiography was published less than a century later by the Jewish Literary Society (Israelitiska litteratur-sällskapet) in Sweden, and under the supervision of Joseph Seligman, the Judeo-German manuscript was transcribed (incidentally, full of errors) into the Roman alphabet.  Seligman added his own introduction as well.  There are now two editions in contemporary Yiddish: (1) Arn izaks zikhroynes (Arn Izaks’s memoirs), published by Zalmen Reyzen (Warsaw, 1922); and (2) Arn izaks, avtobyografye (Arn Isaks, autobiography), revised with a forward by Nokhum Shtif (Berlin: Klal farlag, 1922), 118 pp.  Izaks also wrote poetry.  Some of them have a certain cultural historical value.  His poetry, dedicated to “my beloved R. Mordechai Rofe” (Dr. Marcus Mozes), was published by Professor Olaus Gerhard von Tychsen in German letters as Gelehrte Beyträge zu den mecklenburg-schwerinschen Nachrichten (February 1766).



Sources: N. Shtif, “Foreyde tsu arn izaks avtobyografye” (Foreword to Aaron Isaac’s autobiography) (Berlin, 1922); Abraham Brody, ed., Aaron Isaacs Minnen. En judisk kulturbild från gustaviansk tid (Aaron Isaacs’s memoirs: A Jewish Cultural image from the Gustavian period) (Stockholm, 1932); Dr. Y. Tsinberg, Di geshikhte fun der literatur bay yidn (The history of Jewish literature), vol. 7, pp. 203-6; Dr. Y. Shatski, in Yivo-bleter (Vilna, 1932), vol. 3, pp. 268-70, and vol. 9, pp. 284-87; Zalmen Reyzen, in Algemayne entsiklopedye, vol. 2.

Khayim-Leyb Fuks


Tuesday, 20 May 2014

DOVID (DAVID) IZAKOVITSH

DOVID (DAVID) IZAKOVITSH (1874-April 13, 1949)
Born in Shavel (Šiauliai), Lithuania.  He studied in religious schools.  From age fourteen he taught himself the subjects of a general education.  In 1893 he came to London.  He mastered the trades of compositor and printer, and he joined the anarchist movement.  From 1900 to 1906, he published anarchist brochures in Yiddish which he typeset and printed himself.  In 1903 he was in Leeds, England, the head of a major publishing house, and he became the manager of the anarchist journal, Arbeter fraynd (Worker’s friend).  At the same time, he published works of important anarchist writers in Yiddish translation.  In 1907 he emigrated to the United States.  He worked in New York as a compositor, and later he became the typesetter and proofreader for the publisher of Tog (Day).  Together with Dr. Yankev Merison, he founded the Kropotkin Literature Society and its publishing house.  Using the pseudonym, G. David, he translated Olive Schreiner’s Dreams (as Troymer) (New York, 1910), 122 pp.; Peter Kropotkin’s Memoirs of a Revolutionary (as Memuarn fun a revolutsyoner) (New York, 1915), 524 pp.; Sidney and Beatrice Webb’s History of Trade Unionism (as Di geshikhte fun treid-yunyonizm in England) (New York, 1912); and L. P. Edwards’s The Natural History of Revolution) (as Natur-geshikhte fun revolutsye) (New York).  He also translated for Fraye arbeter shtime (Free voice of labor) innumerable articles on social-political and economic themes.  Over a period of many years, he held an important position in the Jewish Writers Union in New York, and was at the head of the union’s activities on behalf of its members.  In intellectual circles he was considered a “revolutionary reformist.”  In his last years, he grew close to the Yidish natsionaler arbeter farband (Jewish National Workers Alliance).

Sources: B. Ts. Goldberg, in Tog (New York) (May 6, 1935); H. Frank, obituary in Fraye arbeter shtime (New York) (April 29, 1949); Yoysef Kahan, Di yidishe anarkhistishe bavegung in amerike (The Jewish anarchist movement in the United States) (Philadelphia, 1945), p. 230.


IZABELLA

IZABELLA (1863-1938)
Pseudonym of Beyle Fridberg, daughter of the writer A. Sh. Fridberg and the first wife of Mortkhe Spektor.  She was born in Grodno.  Living in St. Petersburg in the 1880s, she came into contact with Yiddish literary circles there and began to write herself.  His first story, “Der yosem” (The orphan), was published in Hoyz-fraynd (House friend), no. 1 (1888).  She also published: “In der fremd” (Abroad), Hoyz-fraynd, no. 1; “Nisht oysgehaltn” (Inconsistent), Yudishe biblyotek (Jewish library), no. 1; Fun glik tsum keyver, a khosn oyf oystsoln (From joy to the grave, a husband on the installment plan) (Warsaw, 1894), 28 pp.  In her stories, she tried to describe the life of a Jewish, middle-class distinct from the situation of education young women among the Jews.  In the 1890s she settled in Odessa.  She began writing in Russian, completed several dramatic pieces, but they were never published.  In 1910 she moved to Constantinople.  She died there in 1938.

Source: Zalmen Reyzen, Leksikon, vol. 1.


AVROM IVENITSKI

AVROM IVENITSKI (1892-1943)
Born in Zhetel (Pol. Zdzięcioł; Bel. Dzyatlava; Lit. Zietela) in the Grodno region of Poland.  He studied in religious school as well as in a Russian state school.  In 1910 he studied with a private tutor in Slonim.  In 1911 he worked as a proofreader for a Russian publishing house in Warsaw.  In 1912 he was in Odessa.  When WWI broke out in 1914, he was mobilized into the Russian army.  He spent eight months at the front, then fell into Austrian captivity in the camps in Croatia.  In 1918 he returned to Zhetel.  In 1921 he was in Vilna, and he contributed to Vilner tog (Vilna day).  At the same time, he studied to be a dental technician.  At the end of 1923, the Vilna Jewish Literary Society published his book, Ven di vegn kraytsn zikh, togbukh fun a yidishn krigs-gefangenem (When the roads cross, diary of a Jewish prisoner of war), 77 pp., with an introduction by Moyshe Shalit (a second printing appeared in 1924).  He described in this book something of Jewish life in the small towns of Croatia in the past which prior to that time had never been done.  In 1924 he was in Warsaw where he worked for Keren Hayesod (United Israel Appeal).  He published fictional pieces, reviews of books, and news items in the Warsaw press.  At that time, he worked as a book agent for Yiddish publishers.  Using the name Y. Ashkenazi, in 1926 he translated Charles Dickens’s Oliver Twist, and in 1928 Knut Hamsun’s The Last Joy.  With help from the Bund, he was elected vice-mayor of Zhetel.  He published in the record book of Yekopo (Yevreyskiy komitet pomoshchi zhertvam voyny—“Jewish Relief Committee for War Victims”) (Vilna, 1931) a monograph on Zhetel.  He was a teacher in the Tsisho (Central Jewish School Organization) school in Zhetel.  He was murdered by the Nazis in 1943.

Sources: A. Kotik, in Tog (Vilna), no. 120 (1923); Sh. Grig, in Bikher-velt, no. 1-2 (Warsaw, 1924); L. Blumenfeld, in Les Hommes du Jour, no. 18 (Paris, 1925); Lerer yizker-bukh, di umgekumene lere fun tsisho shuln in poyln (Teachers’ memory book, the murdered teachers from Tsisho schools in Poland) (New York, 1954).


S. IVANOVITSH

S. IVANOVITSH (May 1, 1881-February 24, 1944)
Adopted name of Sh. Portugeis.  Born in Kishinev to poor parents.  From a very young age, he joined the Jewish revolutionary movement.  He was a contributor to the Russian social democratic press.  In 1904 he was jailed and then exiled.  He was one of the leaders during the Potemkin uprising in Odessa.  He was in St. Petersburg in 1905, and following the 1905 Revolution he was a contributor to the radical daily Russian press.  In 1902 as an opponent of Bolshevism, he fled to Berlin.  After Hitler’s rise to power, he moved to Paris, and in 1942 he came to the United States.  He wrote in Yiddish, Russian, and in English as well.  He contributed to the English collection, Socialism, Fascism, and Communism (New York, 1934).  In his last years, he contributed to Sotsialisticheskii vestnik (Socialist herald).  From 1929 until his death, he wrote for the Forverts (Forward).

Source: L. Fogelman, in Tsukunft (July 1934).


Monday, 19 May 2014

VOLF H. IVAN (W. H. IWAN)

VOLF H. IVAN (W. H. IWAN) (b. 1913)
Born in Lodz.  He attended public school and was a laborer.  Until 1939 he was active among leftist young laborers.  When the Nazis occupied Lodz, he fled to Bialystok.  From 1940 to 1945, he was in Russia, and in 1945 he was back in Lodz.  He was a contributor to the Jewish Historical Commission (Lodz) and the Jewish Historical Institute (Warsaw).  He began to publish poems in Nayer folksblat (New People’s paper) in 1937.  He contributed poems and short articles concerning literary issues, as well as concerning the writings of Yiddish writers that he found in the Lodz ghetto in Dos naye lebn (The new life), Folks-shtime (Voice of the people), Yidishe shrift (Yiddish writings), and Oyfgang (Arise), among others.  His books include: In loyf fun teg (The flow of days) (Lodz, 1938); and Af heymisher erd (On home ground) (Warsaw, 1950), 31 pp.

Dr. L. Zhitnitski, in IKUF (Buenos Aires) (March-April 1948); B. Heler, in Folks-shtime (Poland), no. 11 (172) (1950); Sh. Lastik, Mitn ponem tsum morgn (With one’s face to the morning) (Warsaw, 1952), pp. 191-94.


YITSKHOK EDELSHTEYN (ISAAC EDELSTEIN)

YITSKHOK EDELSHTEYN (ISAAC EDELSTEIN) (b. 1890)
By trade a pharmacist, he was earlier active in the Labor Zionist movement.  Later he became an anarchist.  He edited (together with Pedro Shprinberg) the anarchist monthly, Lebn un frayhayt (Life and freedom) (Buenos Aires, 1908, three issues).  He published a serial translation of Nietzsche’s Also sprach Zarathustra as Azoy hot gezogt zaratustra in the same periodical.

P. Kats, Geklibene shrift (Collected writings) (Buenos Aires, 1946), vol. 5, pp. 167-70.


MARK IDELSON

MARK IDELSON (d. 1942)
Born in Vilna to well-to-do parents.  Throughout his youth, he was a member of the Bund.  During WWI he was in Odessa.  In 1919, he returned to Vilna as a teacher of technical subjects.  Later he was an instructor of physics in the technical faculty of the ORT vocational school.  His Yiddish terminology for physics and mathematics were issued in mimeographed form through the Vilna ORT technical faculty and were used for practical work.  He was active leader, collector, and bibliophile for YIVO.  In the Vilna ghetto he ran technical and Bundist youth programs.  He died in the Vilna ghetto.

Sources: Sh. Katsherginski, Khurbm vilne (The Holocaust in Vilna) (New York, 1947); H. Avramovitsh, in Unzer shtime (Paris) (May 23-24, 1951).


AVROM (AVRAHAM) IDELSON

AVROM (AVRAHAM) IDELSON (1865-December 7, 1922)
Born in Vekshni (Viekšniai), Lithuania, and studied jurisprudence in Moscow.  After his student years, he joined Chovevei Tsiyon (Lovers of Zion) and was an active member of the Bnei Tsiyon society.  From the seventh congress, he served as a member of the greater shareholder-committee, a theoretician of Zionism, and one of the authors of the Helsingfors (Helsinki) present-directed program (1906).  From 1900 he authored publicist articles in Hamelits (The advocate) and Hazman (The time), and edited Zionist serials in Russian.  Following the 1905 Revolution, He brought out in St. Petersburg the very popular humor magazine in Yiddish, Der sheygets (The smart aleck).  He emigrated from Russia after the Bolshevik Revolution, and he edited in London Haolam (The world).  He died in Berlin.  His books include: Der tsienizm (Zionism), a theoretical justification (Odessa: Kadima, 1906), 32 pp.; Marksizm un di yudishe frage (Marxism and the Jewish question) (Ekaterinoslav, 1917), published under the name “A. D. Idelson” (A. D. = Avrom/Avraham Davidovich).  He used the Hebrew pseudonym of “A. Davidson,” among others.



Source: Zalmen Reyzen, Leksikon, vol. 1.

Sunday, 18 May 2014

YANKL IDELTSHIK

YANKL IDELTSHIK
He published stories and notices in the Soviet Yiddish press in the literary collection, Shloglerishe trit (Shock-work steps), edited by Maks Erik and Y. Serebriani with an introduction by the latter (Minsk, 1932), 108 pp.  He served in the Red Army during WWII and settled in Minsk after the war.  Much of his biography and career remains unknown.

Sources: N. Kabakov, “Mit shloglerishe trit” (With shock-work steps), in the daily newspaper Oktyaber (October) (Minsk), no. 81 (1932); Kh. Dunyets, “Der arbeter-shlogler hot a vort” (The working shock-troop has something to say), Oktyabr (Minsk), nos. 158, 160, reprinted in Yunger arbeter (Young worker) (Minsk), no. 23 (1932).


MEIR IDELBOYM (MEYER EDELBAUM)

MEIR IDELBOYM (MEYER EDELBAUM) (b. December 28, 1905)
     He was born in Mezritsh (Międzyrzec), Poland.  He studied in religious schools, and for general subjects with a private tutor.  He was a student at the Warsaw Tachkemoni.  He was a teacher of Hebrew at the rabbinical seminary “Etz Chaim” in London.  He was one of the founders of “Tseirei mizrachi” (Youth of the [Middle] East) and the founder in England and Belgium of “Torah veavodah” (Torah and worship).  He was a member of the editorial board of Di tsayt (The times, London).  He also published in Morgn-zhurnal (Morning journal), Hatsofe (The spectator), and other Yiddish and English newspapers.  He was living in Israel.

Sources: D. Tidhar, Entsiklopedyah lealutse hayishuv uvonav (Encyclopedia of the founders and builders of Israel), vol. 4 (Tel Aviv, 1950), p. 1576.


KHANEN IGER (HERMAN EAGER)

KHANEN IGER (HERMAN EAGER) (July 1897-May 9, 1971)

Born in Ostrovets (Astravyets), near Kletsk (Klieck), Byelorussia.  His father, Yisroel-Yankev, was a cantor in New York.  He came to the United States at age twelve.  He graduated from school in agronomy.  He wrote and translated scientific articles, as well as humorous sketches, children’s stories, and poetry.  He was a contributing editor to Der yidisher farmer (The Jewish farmer), and he published pieces in Forverts (Forward), Morgn-zhurnal (Morning journal), Tog (Day), Kundes (Prankster), and Amerikaner (The American), among others.  He translated Joseph Kovner’s English-language book concerning Palestine.  Among his books: Miami bitsh (Miami beach), poetry (New York, 1937), 94 pp.; Getrakht un gelakht (Thought and laughed) (New York, 1944).  He died in New York.

DOVID (DAVID) IGELBERG

DOVID (DAVID) IGELBERG
Author of (Classified collection of aphorisms) , “collected thoughts of well-known writers” (Warsaw, 1912), 48 pp.

Source: Y. L. Peretz, in Haynt (Warsaw) (April 30, 1912), republished in Yivo bleter (YIVO leaves), vol. 36 (1952), p. 352.


Friday, 16 May 2014

DOVID IGNATOV (DAVID IGNATOW)

DOVID IGNATOV (DAVID IGNATOW) (October 14, 1885-February 26, 1954)
His earlier surname was Ignatovski.  Born in Brusilov (Brusyliv), Ukraine, into a Hassidic family.  He attended religious schools, and later became a university candidate.  In 1903 he left for Kiev, joined the group around Iskra (Spark) of the Russian Social Democratic Party, and was arrested.  When freed, he became a professional revolutionary.  In 1906 he emigrated to the United States and worked in various factories in Chicago, St. Louis, and New York.  He experienced every trial and tribulation that immigrants underwent at that time.  For a short time in New York, he worked as a union organizer.  He began writing in Russian, and made the acquaintance of young Yiddish writers which led him to write in Yiddish, but without success.  The Fraye arbiter shtime (Free voice of labor) did not wish to publish his first story.  This unsuccessful attempt, though, did not leave him discouraged.  His continued writing and gradually became one of the most active leaders of the group that revolted against the literary conservatism of the Yiddish press at the time.  This group was later known as Di yunge (The young ones).  In 1907 he debuted with a story in the anthology Yugnt (Youth), published by several young writers.  The active Yiddish reading public at that time was drawn to this collection, and Ignatov’s story made quite an impression, and he was encouraged to engage in further writing.  In 1910 he published, together with Y. Y. Shvarts, the collection Literatur (Literature).  In 1912 he began publishing the anthology Shriftn (Writings)—in which through him was founded the publisher, Amerike (America)—which appeared sporadically until 1926 with a longer break over the period 1915-1918.  Shriftn became the literary dais for a pléiade of young poets and prose writers who contributed much to the development of Yiddish literature in America.  Shriftn also—for the first time in the history of the Yiddish periodical press—made it possible for a number of Jewish painters to introduce to Yiddish readers new ideas and directions in the realm of the plastic arts.  Ignatov published in these collections his own longer and shorter works.  Outside of Shriftn he edited the anthology Velt ayn, velt oys (World in, world out, 1916), and he published short novellas and longer works in: Dovid Pinski’s Arbeter (Workers), Chaim Zhitlovsky’s Dos naye lebn (The new life), Avrom Reyzen’s Dos naye land (The new land), Tsukunft (Future), Yidishe velt (Jewish world) in Vilna, and Kritik (Critique) in Vienna), among others.
Among his books are the following: Tsvey kreftn (Two crabs) (New York, 1908), 35 pp.; Berl proger (Berl Proger) (New York, 1916), 48 pp., second printing (New York, 1921); Tsvishn tsvey zunen (Between two suns) (New York, 1918), 256 pp., second printing (New York, 1919); In kesl-grub (In the crucible) (New York, 1918), 228 pp., second printing (New York, 1919); Dos farborgene likht (The hidden light) (New York, 1918), 183 pp., second printing (New York, 1919); Vunder mayses fun altn prag (Wonder tales from old Prague) (New York, 1920), 231 pp.; Oyfbroyz (Spurt) (New York, 1932), 289 pp.; Af vayte veg (On a further road), a trilogy (New York, 1932), 277 pp., 253 pp., 269 pp.; Dos, vos kumt for (That which occurred) (New York, 1932), 272 pp.; Far a nayer velt (Toward a new world) (New York, 1939), 320 pp., a biblical tragedy full of poetic ideas and images; Gidon, tragedye in tsvey un tsvantsik megiles (Gideon, a tragedy in twenty-two scrolls) (New York, 1953), 444 pp., with drawings by Y. Tofel.  In 1921 a series of his children’s stories was published in New York: Dos goldene yingele (The golden lad), Gold un brilyantn (Gold and diamonds), In dem land fun raykhkeyt (In the land of wealth), Di malke shabes (Shabbat, the queen), and Vinter (Winter), among other others.  All had already been published and with colorful illustrations.  Ignatov’s books and collections were illustrated by such painters as: A. Volkovits, Y. Tofel, B. Kopman, B. Anisfeld, Yoysef Hekht, Sh. Vitkovits, Maks Veber, Z. Moud, and M. Shvarts.
Over a period of many years, Ignatov was active in HIAS (Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society).  In 1937 he participated in the Jewish Cultural Congress in Paris, though he did not join IKUF (Jewish Cultural Association) which was created at this congress.  In 1948 he took an active role in the Altveltlekher yidisher kultur-kongres (World Jewish cultural congress); he was the originator of the art forum within this institution.  “Ignatov brought to Yiddish prose a tone and rhythm all his own, and he excelled with his beautiful, musical language….  Characteristic of Ignatov was an aspiration to rise above the quotidian….  The tendency in his work is a lyrical, religious one.” (Sh. Niger)  From 1950 he suffered from a serious illness and was completed kept isolated.  He passed away in New York and was buried along an honorary path for Yiddish writers in the Workman’s Circle cemetery.

Sources: Zalmen Reyzen, Leksikon; Algemayne entsiklopedye (General encyclopedia), vol. 3; N. Oyslender, Veg ayn, veg oys (Way in, way out) (Kiev, 1924), pp. 173-202; Y. Botoshanski, Portretn fun yidishe shrayber (Portraits of Yiddish writers) (Warsaw, 1933); Yorbukh fun semeteri-department arbiter-ring (Annual of the cemetery department of the Workmen’s Circle) (New York, 1954); Yankev Glatshteyn, in Yidisher kemfer (April 30, 1954); Dr. Ch. Zhitlovsky, Vizie un gedank (Vision and thought) (New York, 1951); B. Tutshinski, in Bodn (New York) (April 1937); B. Tshubinski, in Tsukunft (October 1953); Mani Leyb and Dr. Y. Rozenfeld, Dovid ignatov, finf un tsvantsik yor literarishe shafn (Dovid Ignatov, twenty-five years of literary creations) (Chicago, 1935); N. B. Minkov, in Kultur un dertsiung (New York) (March 1954); Shmuel Niger, Shmuesn vegn bikher (Chats about books) (New York, 1922), pp. 186-94, and in Tog (New York) (February 12, 1933), and in Tsukunft (August 1938); Y. Pat, Shmuesn mit yidishe shrayber (Chats with Jewish writers) (New York, 1954); Y. Rolnik, Mayne zikhroynes (My memoirs) (New York, 1954); B. Rivkin, Undzere prozaiker (Our prose writers) (New York, 1951).

B. Tshubinski