Monday 12 June 2017


MOYSHE-LEYB LEVENSHTEYN (1862-September 1942)
            He was born in Chmielnik, Kielce district, Poland.  He attended religious elementary school and yeshivas.  He acquired a name as a child prodigy and later became a follower of the Jewish Enlightenment.  In the late nineteenth century, he came to Tshenstokhov (Częstochowa), where he founded (1903) the first “Groshn biblyotek” (Penny library) in the city.  In that period he began writing.  He was for many years the Częstochowa correspondent for: Idishes tageblat (Jewish daily newspaper) (1907); Haynt (Today); and later Moment (Moment)—all in Warsaw.  He was a cofounder of the Yiddish press in Częstochowa.  He contributed to: Tshenstokhover togblat (Częstochowa daily newspaper) (1913-1919); Tshenstokhover tsaytung (Częstochowa newspaper) (1928); and Zaglembyer tsaytung (Zagłębie newspaper) in Będzin.  In the latter he published feature pieces and theater reviews, and he ran sections entitled “Frun fraytik biz fraytik” (From Friday to Friday) and “Vos gehert, vos gezen” (What was heard and seen).  He also wrote under such pen names as: M. M. L. and Levyosn.  Under the Nazis, during the Aktion of September 1942, he was dragged down from his hiding place in an attic and from Umschlagplatz (the collection point in Warsaw for deportation) he was deported to his death in Treblinka.  His son, KHONE LEVENSHTEYN, was a well-known Yiddish actor in Poland.

Sources: Information from A. Gotlib (secretary of the Częstochowa association in the state of Israel) in Tel Aviv; A. Khrabalovski, M. Tseshinski, and R. Federman, in Tshenstokhover yidn (The Jews of Częstochowa) (New York, 1947), pp. 94, 99, LII; I. Goldberg, Undzer dramaturgye, leyenbukh in der yidisher drame (Our playwriting, textbook in Yiddish drama) (New York: IKUF, 1961), p. 531.
Khayim Leyb Fuks

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