Thursday 22 May 2014


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).

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