Sunday 16 April 2017


YISROEL LILYENSHTEYN (b. December 30, 1899)
            He was born in Warsaw, and he was later an employee in the association of traveling salesmen and a waiter in a restaurant, among other occupations.  Over the years 1920-1923, he lived in Berlin, where he worked in a tailoring workshop.  He later settled in France and worked as a bookbinder and later became a merchant traveling from market to market.  He was a cofounder of the Association of Former Students in Jewish Public Schools in Poland and chairman of the Jewish traveling merchant association in Paris.  He was an active fighter in the underground resistance movement during WWII, at first in Paris and later in Grenoble.  After liberation he returned to Paris.  His wife was deported by the Nazis and murdered at Auschwitz.  He debuted in print with a humorous piece in the publication Bontshe shvayg (Bontshe the silent) in Warsaw (1916), later becoming a principal contributor to and editor of Der yidisher kleynhendler (The Jewish retailer) in Paris (1932-1938).  He contributed to the illegal Yiddish press in France (1941-1944) and from 1944 was a regular contributor to Arbeter-vort (Workers’ word) in Paris, for which he ran the column “Opklangen” (Echoes).  From time to time he wrote as well for Unzer shtime (Our voice) and Unzer vort (Our word) in Paris.  His travel impressions from Spain were reprinted in: Folksshtime (People’s voice) in Warsaw, and Folksblat (People’s newspaper) and Fray yisroel (Free Israel) in Tel Aviv.  He also published under such pen names as: Zhak, Izak, Yisroel mitn Pekl, and A Marshan.  He was last living in Paris.
Khayim Leyb Fuks

(Translator note.  After this entry appeared in print, he published: Zikhroynes fun mayn lebn, varshe-pariz [Memoirs of my life, Warsaw-Paris] [Paris, 1977], 90 pp.—JAF)

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