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Ukraine Jewish Population after Khmelnitski Massacres #general


David Goldman
 

I haven't well understood how the Jewish population seemingly grew so much into the
19th century in places such as Podolia where they were about 10% of the population
at the beginning of the 19th century in the wake of the effects of the Khmelnitsky
uprisings and massacres in the 1640s. In the days of the Chassidim the stories we
read make it sound as if there were vibrant communities and rabbis everywhere in
Podolia (and even Volhynia), so one wonders how the Jewish population grew so much.

On the other hand there are other stories suggesting that famous Jewish towns in
Ukraine in the 18th and 19th centuries actually only had relative handfuls of Jews
in them, i.e. 100-200 or even fewer Jews. Famous Chassidic and pre-chassidic rabbis
in those areas had religious responsibilities ostensibly covering many "towns"
which must have meant handfuls of Jews here and there. In reconstructing how things
were in those days, what did Jewish life in Podolia in the years after the
massacres really look like and where did those Jews all migrate >from specifically
into a place such as Podolia that was so potentially socially and politically
sensitive?

Thanks,
David Goldman
NYC


Adam Cherson
 

Dear David,

Look at it this way.

If generation 1 has eight children and each succeeding generation has 8
children, then by generation 3 you have 512 people. In three generations
you have an increase of 6400%. If your generations start early, say
around 16-18 years of age, you could have 5 generations in 100 years,
and now you're talking 32,678 people >from one original pair of two
people after 100 years. Let's say only half of these people managed to
reproduce at these rates, you're still looking at about 16,300 people
from two original ancestors. So it does not take long for populations to
grow geometrically even when a significant proportion of offspring did
not reproduce at the rates shown above.

I hope this helps your understanding of the population growth in that area.

Best Wishes,
Adam

From: "David Goldman" <lugman@verizon.net>
I haven't well understood how the Jewish population seemingly grew so much into the
19th century in places such as Podolia where they were about 10% of the population
at the beginning of the 19th century in the wake of the effects of the Khmelnitsky
uprisings and massacres in the 1640s.


Alexander Sharon
 

David Goldman wrote:
I haven't well understood how the Jewish population seemingly grew so much into the
19th century in places such as Podolia where they were about 10% of the population
at the beginning of the 19th century in the wake of the effects of the Khmelnitsky
uprisings and massacres in the 1640s. In the days of the Chassidim the stories we
read make it sound as if there were vibrant communities and rabbis everywhere in
Podolia (and even Volhynia), so one wonders how the Jewish population grew so much.

On the other hand there are other stories suggesting that famous Jewish towns in
Ukraine in the 18th and 19th centuries actually only had relative handfuls of Jews
in them, i.e. 100-200 or even fewer Jews. Famous Chassidic and pre-chassidic rabbis
in those areas had religious responsibilities ostensibly covering many "towns"
which must have meant handfuls of Jews here and there. In reconstructing how things
were in those days, what did Jewish life in Podolia in the years after the
massacres really look like and where did those Jews all migrate >from specifically
into a place such as Podolia that was so potentially socially and politically
sensitive?
---

The Jewish chronicles say 100,000 Jews were killed and 300 communities
destroyed during Bohdan Chmielnicki uprising of 1648-9.

But on the other hand, Jewish Encyclopedia quotes that at the beginning of
1640ies only 4 thousands Jewish were residents in of 18 communities in
Podolia. The larger Jewish communities were Miedziborz, Nemirov, Tulchin and
Bar. German Jews have settled in Podolia during Thirty Years War (1618-1648).

Alexander Sharon
Calgary, AB