Sunday 14 April 2019


YOYSEF KERMISH (June 2, 1907-2005)
            He was a historian, born in Zlotnik, Galicia.  He graduated from high school in Tarnopol (Ternopil) and studied history in Warsaw.  He received his doctoral degree for a dissertation on the history of Lublin.  He spent WWII in the Soviet Union.  In 1944 he cofounded the central Jewish historical commission in Poland, known from 1948 as the Jewish Historical Institute.  From 1950 he was living in Israel, where he turned his attention to research on the Holocaust of WWII.  From 1953 he was director of the central archives of Yad Vashem in Jerusalem and co-editor of its yearbook.  Before the war he published work on historical topics in Polish and Polish Jewish periodicals; after the war, he published essays on the mass murder of Jews and resistance in: Dos naye lebn (The new life) in Lodz; Bleter far geshikhte (Pages for history) in Warsaw, also co-editor; Sefer hashana, yorbukh (Yearbook) of the World Federation of Polish Jewry; Di goldene keyt (The golden chain) in Tel Aviv; Yerusholaimer almanakh (Jerusalem almanac); Yedies fun yad vashem (News from Yad Vashem) in Jerusalem; Der poylisher yid (The Polish Jew) in Rio de Janeiro; and Kiem (Existence) in Paris; among others.  He contributed to the three-volume work, Varsha (Warsaw), in the series Entsiklopediya shel galuyot (Encyclopedia of the Diaspora), and to the remembrance volumes for Khmyelnik (Chmielnik), Plotsk (Płock), Pyetrikov (Piotrków), and Kolomaye, among other towns.  He wrote or edited numerous books about the Holocaust of Polish Jews in Polish, Hebrew, and English, and from these Shlyome Lastik translated into Yiddish: Der oyfshtand in varshever geto, 19-ter april-16-ter mai 1943 (The uprising in the Warsaw Ghetto, April 19-May 16, 1943 [original: Powstanie w getcie warszawskim, 19. IV.-16. V. 1943]) (Buenos Aires, 1948), 159 pp.

Sources: T. Zadaretski, in Dos naye lebn (Lodz) (September 17, 1946); M. Man, in Unzer vort (Paris) (January 29, 1966); K. Shabatai, in Davar (Tel Aviv) (March 28, 1969).
Ruvn Goldberg

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