Monday 16 April 2018


MORTKHE-ZEV SIROTA (b. July 12, 1895)
            He was born in Bialystok, the son of a Russian and Yiddish teacher.  He studied in religious elementary school and yeshivas, while at the same time also acquiring a secular education.  He contributed to the lively newspapers of the Fareynikte (United [socialist parties]), led by Yankev Pat, and “Yidishe kunst” (Jewish art), led by Peysekh Kaplan.  In late 1919 when Peysekh Kaplan established in Bialystok Dos naye leben (The new life), Sirota became a contributor to the editorial board of the newspaper, and he was in charge of the local division and placed feature pieces, economic surveys, and translations from the Polish and Russian press in the paper.  Together with M. Visotski and Y. G. Shteynsapir, in 1925 he was editing the daily newspaper Byalistoker kuryer (Bialystok courier) which last eight months, and was then brought back to work for Dos naye leben where he worked until 1926.  He later departed for Paris, from whence he corresponded for Dos naye leben and from time to time also wrote for the Paris-based Unzer vort (Our word), Haynt (Today), and Morgnblat (Morning newspaper).  He published memoirs in Byalistoker shtime (Voice of Bialystok) in New York.  He also wrote under the pen name “M. S-to.”  He was last living in Paris.

Sources: Byalistoker leksikon (Bialystok handbook) (Bialystok, 1935); Byalistoker album (Bialystok album) (New York, 1951); Byalistoker shtime (New York) (March-April 1953); S. Kahan, in Byalistoker shtime (March-April 1961).
Yankev Kahan

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