Saturday 17 February 2018


YITSKHOK SAMSONOVITSH (1902-November 10, 1956)
            He was born in Tshenstokhov (Częstochowa), Poland.  He received a Jewish and a general education.  He was a cofounder and teacher at Tshisho (Jewish School Organization) schools in Pyetrikov (Piotrków).  He was a member of the local city council, a Bundist “Lavnik” (municipal advisor), and secretary of the presidium at city hall.  Over the years 1928-1939, he served as editor of the weekly Pyetrokover veker (Piotrków alarm) and a regular correspondent for the Folks-tsaytung (People’s newspaper in Warsaw, and he contributed as well to Vokhnshrift far literatur (Weekly writing for literature) and Foroys (Onward), among others, in Warsaw.  Until WWII he was a member of the party council of the Bund in Poland.  After the war erupted, he was confined for a time in the Piotrków ghetto, later in the Warsaw Ghetto, and from there he got over the Aryan side of the city.  He helped organize the underground resistance movement and contributed to various anti-Nazi periodicals in Yiddish and in Polish.  He was a member (1945-1948) of the Bund’s central committee in Poland and co-editor of Folks-tsaytung and Głos Bundu (Voice of the Bund) From 1948, when the Bundist party was banned in Poland, Samsonovitsh helped found the pro-Communist Cultural Association, assumed various cultural positions, and he became a contributor to Yidishe shriftn (Yiddish writings) and Folks-shtime (Voice of the people), in which he published treatments on international politics, as well as wrote on writers and literary authors.  Using the pen name D. Zylber, he published the volume: Vos kumt for in daytshland? (What’s happening in German?) (Warsaw: Yidish bukh, 1953), 142 pp.  He was also editor of the Warsaw-based, Polish-language publisher “Czytelnik” (Reader).  He died in Warsaw.

Sources: A. Kvaterka, in Folks-shtime (Lodz) (May 21, 1948); A. B., in Unzer tsayt (New York) (February 1951); obituary article, in Folks-shtime (Warsaw) (November 13, 1956); Sh. Hurvitsh, in Yidishe shriftn (Warsaw) 12 (December 1956); Y. Kermish, in Di goldene keyt (Tel Aviv) 27 (1957); R. Federman, Tshenstokhov anthology (New York, 1958), pp. 146-47.
Benyomen Elis

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