Tuesday 17 September 2019


MOYSHE SHMUELZON (December 12, 1871-May 5, 1947)
            According to his birth certificate, his surname was Shulikhson, born in Makhasterik, Podolia.  He was a writer of sketches.  He attended religious elementary school and studied secular subject matter with private tutors.  In 1893 he made his way to the United States; from 1907-1932, he lived in Montreal and thereafter on a farm near Albany, New York.  He was close to Jewish anarchist circles.  He debuted in print with a monologue in Abend blatt (Evening newspaper) in 1903 and later published in numerous Yiddish publications in America and Canada.  He wrote stories, sketches, and literary critical articles in: St. Petersburg’s Fraynd (Friend) in 1905, Warsaw’s Roman-tsaytung (Fiction newspaper) in 1908, London’s Arbayter fraynd (Workers’ friend), Di yugend (The youth), New York’s Idisher kemfer (Jewish fighter) and Tsukunft (Future) in 1907, Fraye gezelshaft (Free society), and Folks-tsaytung (People’s newspaper) in Montreal, but mostly in New York’s Fraye arbeter shtime (Free voice of labor) and Montreal’s Keneder odler (Canadian eagle) (1907-1930, internal contributor).  He was a prominent writer in his day.  Over the last fifteen years of his life, he published only very rarely and died virtually forgotten in Albany, New York.  His books include: Velten un tsayten, ertsehlungen un skitsen, 1903-1917 (Worlds and times, stories and sketches, 1904-1917) (New York, 1918), 347 pp.
            “Back in the day,” wrote Zalmen Reyzen, “of his scattered writings, Yiddish-language American critics responded very warmly to Shmuelzon’s stories, and his book also aroused recognition.”

Sources: Zalmen Reyzen, Leksikon, vol. 4; Yisroel Rabinovitsh, ed., Yoyvl bukh, suvenir oysgabe lekoved dem yubiley fun hundert yor idisher glaykhbarekhtigung in kanade un finf un tsvantsig yor keneder odler (Jubilee volume, souvenir publication in honor of the centenary of equal rights for Yiddish in Canada and the twenty-fifth year of Keneder odler) (Montreal, 1932); Khananye-Meyer Kayzerman, Idishe dikhter in kanade (Yiddish poets in Canada) (Montreal, 1934), pp. 65-66; Yoyel Entin, in Morgn-zhurnal (New York) (June 4, 1944); Y. Y. Sigal, in Keneder odler (Montreal) (May 11, 1947); Yoyel-Leyb Malamut, in Fraye arbeter shtime (New York) (June 13, 1947),

Khayim Leyb Fuks

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