ALTER SHNUR (1910-1944)
He was a religious poet, born Yisroel-Dov Itsinger in Baytsh (Biecz), Galicia. He lost both parents in his youth. He graduated from the Cracow religious teachers’ seminary. From 1932 he was working in Lodz as a teacher of religion. Confined in the Lodz ghetto, he secretly taught children and young adults, edited the illegal Geto-shriftn (Ghetto writings) and Min hametsar (From the straits), and wrote scathing poems in it against the Jewish ghetto leaders and their Nazi enforcers. In the 1930s he contributed to virtually all of the religious periodicals: Beys yankev (House of Jacob), Kinder-gorten (Kindergarten), Dos yudishe togblat (The Jewish daily newspaper), and Der yudisher arbayter (The Jewish worker) in Lodz, among others. He co-edited Di yudishe arbayter shtime (Voice of the Jewish laborer), and he wrote as well for the Aguda’s Deglanu (Our banner) and other serials. His work also appeared in: Rute Pups, Dos lid fun geto (The poem of the ghetto) (Warsaw, 1962). In book form: Geklibene perl (Selected pearls) (Lodz, 1936); and Rabi shloyme ibn gvirol (Rabbi Solomon Ibn Gabirol) (Lodz, 1936). A portion of the poetry he composed in the ghetto was discovered. He died at Auschwitz.
Sources: Ber Mark, Umgekumene shrayber fun di getos un lagern (Murdered writers from the ghettos and camps) (Warsaw, 1954), pp. 176-77; Moyshe Prager, Di antologye fun religyeze lider un dertseylungen (The anthology of religious poetry and stories) (New York, 1955); Y. Brisk, in Dorem-afrike (Johannesburg) (March-April 1969); Khayim Leyb Fuks, Lodzh shel mayle, dos yidishe gaystiḳe un derhoybene lodzh, 100 yor yidishe un oykh hebreishe literatur un kultur in lodzh un in di arumiḳe shtet un shtetlekh (Lodz on high, the Jewish spiritual and elevated Lodz, 100 years of Yiddish and also Hebrew literature and culture in Lodz and in the surrounding cities and towns) (Tel Aviv: Perets Publ., 1972), see index; Yeshurin archive, YIVO (New York).