"In Search of a Shtetl " ~ Towns of Baisogala, Dunilovichy, Janova and Kedainiai #lithuania


Stacye <GreensAndNettles@...>
 

The program can be heard @ http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00vc51h

Here begins an extraordinary journey to Lithuania and Belarus for
broadcaster and writer Michael Freedland and his son, Guardian
journalist and best-selling author, Jonathan.

These two countries once thronged with Jewish life, a life that was
all but extinguished by successive regimes- Russian Czarists, Soviets
and then the Nazis who, with the help of some Lithuanians, managed to
totally decimate many towns and villages, or shtetls. Knowing that
their forebears settled in the UK in the late 19th century they set
off to try to find any trace of the Freedlands who came >from Baisogala
in Lithuania and the Mindels >from Dunilovichy in Belarus. As the
journey progresses, it becomes a broader search- a search for Jewish
life. They are taken to Janova and Kedainiai, both once busy shtetls,
alive with Jewish businesses, shops and culture. Sadly in such places
where there was once a high proportion of Jews, few now remain and
synagogues have disappeared or fallen into disrepair.

In Kaunas, an interview with Professor Egidius Aleksandrovicius lays
out the entire history of Jewry in Lithuania. In Vilnius, the family
focus is re-established as they visit the National Archives where they
learn a lot about the Freedlands and the Mindels, discovering
crumbling nineteenth century archives that refer to what could be
Michael's ancestors. The trail now points clearly to Baisogala, what
was once a tiny shtetl in the Lithuanian countryside. Simon the guide
knows of a Jewish cemetery on the outskirts, but it's a cemetery he
hasn't seen for ten years, as it's been flooded for a reservoir, but
by an amazing stroke of luck, the team tries a wooded hillside
and...there it is, remnants of old and mostly illegible Jewish tombs,
where, no doubt, Michael and Jonathan's ancestors are buried."
(Producer: Neil Rosser //A Ladbroke Production for BBC Radio 4).

Stacye Mehard
Virginia

Studying the Families of
Alperovich of Kurenets; Ipp of Kaunas; Krokin / Krokinovsky /
Crockin of Crockin of Kaunas and Baltimore and Norfolk, Va;
Lewitan of Kobylnik, Dokshits-Dokkshytsy, Lithuania and Belarus;
Luloff / Lulow / Lulove of Dokshits-Dokkshytsy and Minsk;
Piastunovich of Kurenets & Dokshits-Dokkshytsy;
Rapoport of Kaunas; Rosenthal / Roszental of Dokshits-Dokkshytsy;
Sass / Zess of Lithuania and Poland; Smigelsky of Grodno and
Shenandoah, Pennsylvania

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