In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content:

Vol. 10, No. 4 Summer 1992 31 HISTORY OF THE JEWISH COLLECTIONS AT THE VERNADSKY LIBRARY IN KIEV by Zachary M. Baker Zachary M. Baker is I-lead Librarian of the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research, New York. He is contributing editor toAvotaynu: The InternationalJournal ofjewish Genealogy and tojudaica Librarianship. Mr. Baker is a contributor to the jewish Book Annual, coeditor of the Yiddish Catalog and Authority File ofthe nvo Library (1990), and the compiler of the Bibliography of Eastern European Memorial Books (1980, 1983, 1989). Background: Jewish Collections in East-Central Europe The collapse of Communist rule in East-Central Europe and the sudden demise of the Soviet Union have tremendous implic;ations for Jewish-and Yiddish-scholarship. Library and archival repositories that were once sealed off have been opened to the public, and collections long feared to be lost have miraculously come to light. A complete picture of Judaica collections in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union cannot yet be produced. Even so, it is already possible to sketch out its rough dimensions while we await the results of surveys like the one on archival collections in Russia and other former Soviet republics which is being conducted under ProjectJudaica (a joint program of the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research, the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, and the Russian State University of the Humanities, in MOSCOW). Here are a few details of this emerging picture: (1) Even before the accession of Poland's first post-Communist government in 1989, the National Library (Biblioteka Narodowa) in Warsaw shared information on its vast back files of the interwar Jewish press, in Yiddish and Polish. Since 1987, some important Polish Jewish news- 32 SHOFAR paper runs from the National Library, includingNaszPrzeglr;d, Haynt (both from Warsaw), and Tsayt (Vilna), have been made accessible on microfilm through the efforts of Prof. Samuel Kassow (Trinity College, Hartford, CT), with the cooperation of the University of Connecticut (Storrs). (2) In 1989 and 1990, representatives of YIVO were granted access to Jewish library and archival collections in Vilnius, Lithuania. These collections include sizable portions of YIVO's own pre-World War II archives, along with a considerable amount of Holocaust documentation and materials of Lithuanian Jewish (non-YIVO) provenance. In addition, as visitors to the recent "Jiidische Lebenswelten" exhibit in Berlin can attest, much rare Yiddish press material (some of it from YIVO's prewar Press Archives), along with over 50,000 volumes of judaica and Hebraica books, has been preserved by the Lithuanian State Book Chamber (Knygii Rumu). (3) In Lviv (Lw6w, Lemberg), too, significant archival and library collections ofjewish provenance (including press runs) are known to reside in local repositories. 1 (4) As for cities that belonged to the Soviet Union from the time of its establishment, sizable jewish library and archival collections are scattered in various institutions in St. Petersburg and Moscow/ having survived the vicissitudes of revolution, confiscation, war, and repeated relocations. Some of the most important of these Russian jewish archives, such as those of the Society for the Spread of Enlightenment among the Jews of Russia (lfevrah Mefitse Haskalah, or OPE, to use its Russian abbreviation) and the Jewish HistoricalEthnographic Society, are now primarily, but not exclusively (as we 'Tatiana 'Shtankova, "Ookumenry po iSlOrii evreev Galitsii v Tsentral'nom gosudarstvennom iSlOricheskom arkhive Ukrainy vo L'vove." Lecture delivered at the YIVO Institute"for Jewish Research, New York, 14 April 1992. >valery Gessen, "The Strange Fate of the Archives of the St Petersburg Jewish Societies," Soviet jelllish AJ/airs 21.2 (1991), pp. [55J-68; Igor Krupnik, "Avrom Harkavis arkhiv," Sovetish heylllland 12 (1990), pp. 116-[1221; Krupnik, "Jewish Holdings of the Leningrad Ethnographic Museum," Soviet jewish AJ/airs 19.1 (1989), pp. [35J-48; Krupnik, '''Sh. An-skis kolektsye' in di fondn funem Hislorishn muzey un fun dem Muzey fun historishe venfule khfeyrsim fun Ukraine," Sovetish heylllland 11 (1990), pp. 141-45; Eleanor Gordon Mlotek. "Soviet-Yiddish Folklore Scholarhip," Musica judaica 2.1 (1977-78), pp. 73-89. Vol. 10, No.4 Summer 1992 33 shall relate), in the Central Stare Hisrorical Archives of Sr. Petersburg.3 Numerous archives in other cities-capitals of republics and provincial centers alike...


Additional Information

Print ISSN
pp. 31-48
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.