Wednesday 24 January 2018


SHLOYME-BOREKH NISENBOYM (September 1, 1866-March 1926)
            He was born in Lublin, Poland.  He studied Talmud with commentaries and was a Hassid, but later became a follower of the Jewish Enlightenment and studied modern Hebrew, Polish, Russian, and German.  He evinced a special inclination for Jewish history.  In Hatsfira (The times, 1893/1894), he published a translation of Menachem Ussishkin’s Russian-language pamphlet on the development of Jewish colonies in the land of Israel.  He was among the first Ḥoveve-tsiyon” (Lovers of Zion), a member of “Bene moshe” (Sons of Moses), and later an active Zionist leader, close to Mizrachi, and a founder of a “cheder metukan” (improved religious elementary school) in Lublin (under the direction of Noyekh Pines).  During the Austrian occupation of Lublin during WWI, he brought out a Yiddish newspaper Lubliner togblat (Lublin daily newspaper), in which he published a series of historical articles, such as: “Di lubliner fargangenhayt” (Lublin’s past), “Gezeyres t’kh in lublin” (The slaughter [of Jews] in 1648 in Lublin)—published earlier in Przegląd historyczny (Historical overview) in a Polish translation by Professor Lopaczynski; and “Di bateylikung fun di yidn in oyfshtand (1863)” (The participation of Jews in the uprising of 1863); among others.  Among his books: Lekorot hayehudim belublin (On the history of Jews in Lublin) (Lublin, 1890), 180 pp., second edition (1921); Geshikhte fun di yidn in poyln (History of the Jews in Poland) (1903), 95 pp.; Yegar shehaduta (The mound of evidence), a collection of photographic images of the old and new cemeteries in Lublin from the sixteenth to the nineteenth centuries (St. Petersburg, 1912), 32 pp.  He also published historical articles in: Evreiskaia entsiklopediia (Jewish encyclopedia), Hatekufa (The epoch), and Reshumot (Records), among other works.  In 1922 he departed for the land of Israel, worked for nine months for the Jewish National Library in Jerusalem, but was unable to care for his family members there, and thus returned to Lublin, where they lived in great hardship.  He died while on a trip to Warsaw, and there he was buried.  He left behind in manuscript form: three large volumes on the history of Jews in Poland and Lithuania, primarily based on rabbinical responsa; a pamphlet “Likutim” (Collections); and “Midivre hayamim haivrim belublin” (From the chronicles of Lublin Jewry)—based on old records (in the possession of Professor Meyer Balaban).

Sources: Zalmen Reyzen, Leksikon, vol. 2, with a bibliography; Dos bukh fun lublin (The book of Lublin) (Paris, 1952), pp. 19-20ff.

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