Thursday 8 May 2014


YESHAYE UGER (1873-1939/1940)
Born in Voroshki, Volhynia, into a family that traced itself back to Rabbi Akiva Eiger; he was raised in Zhitomir.  In his parents’ home, he met Mendele Moykher-Sforim, Binshtok, Zweifel, and Kulisher.  He graduated from high school in Moscow, studied philosophy in K√∂nigsberg, and technology in Berlin.  He began his literary activities with articles in Hebrew and German magazines.  From 1903 he was publishing articles in Fraynd (Friend), and he later contributed pieces to Tog (Day) in St. Petersburg, Der telegraf (The telegraph), and Teater-velt (Theater world).  In 1907 he founded the daily newspaper Lodzer nakhrikhten (Lodz reports), and he later became the editor of Lodzher tageblat (Lodz daily news).  He published historical stories, novels, humorous sketches, a biographical study of Dr. Tshlenov, as well as a drama entitled “Kapitan dreyfus” (Captain Dreyfus), and he edited a number of collections.  In 1909 he published Lodzher adres-bikhl (The address book of Lodz).  He authored: Megiles datshe, a bintl tsores fun unzere letnikes, mit tsaykhenungen fun t. vilenski (The scroll of a dacha, a batch of troubles from our winter coats, with drawings by T. Vilenski) (Lodz, 1913), 56 pp.  During WWI his newspaper suffered persecution by the Germans.  He later devoted a great deal of effort to the physical revival of Jewish youth in Poland.  He served as chairman of the first Jewish sports conference in Lodz (1916); vice-president of the association of Jewish sports unions in Poland; and editor of Yidisher turner (Jewish gymnast), the central organ of the Jewish sports movement.  He was also a member of the Lodz city council (1916-1919).  He visited the United States in 1920, and there for a short time he published an illustrated magazine, Di yidishe biznes-velt (The Jewish business world), contributing as well to Morgen-zhurnal (Morning journal).  He returned to Poland, and until the invasion of Hitler’s armies he once again edited Lodzher tageblat.  He soon was captured by the Nazis who tortured him.  Among his pseudonyms: Almoni, Ploni-almoni, Yuf-alef [his initials], and Y.

Sources: Zalmen Reyzen, Leksikon, vol. 1; Zalmen Zilbertsvayg, Teater-leksikon, vol. 1; D. Tsharni (Charney), in Tsukunft (New York) (January 1943).

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