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Encyclopaedia Judaica

Jews in Latvia

Latvia of Livland and Courland provinces - expulsions during First World War and return - independent Latvia and dictatorship - Holocaust - census 1959 and 1970

Encyclopaedia Judaica (1971): Latvia, vol. 10,
                  col. 1464, the Choral Synagogue of Daugavpils
                  (Dvinsk), Latvia. From R. Abromovitch (ed.): The
                  Vanished World; New York 1947
Encyclopaedia Judaica (1971): Latvia, vol. 10, col. 1464, the Choral Synagogue of Daugavpils (Dvinsk),
Latvia. From R. Abromovitch (ed.): The Vanished World; New York 1947

from: Latvia; In: Encyclopaedia Judaica 1971, vol. 10

presented by Michael Palomino (2008)

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<LATVIA (Lettish Latvija; Rus.Latviya; Ger. Lettland; Pol. Lolwa), one of the Baltic states of N.E. Europe; from 1940 Latvian S.S.R.

Encyclopaedia Judaica (1971): Latvia,
                            vol. 10, col. 1463, map with Jewish
                            communities in Latvia (borders of 1918-40).
                            Population figures for 1935
Encyclopaedia Judaica (1971): Latvia, vol. 10, col. 1463, map with Jewish communities in Latvia (borders of 1918-40). Population figures for 1935: over 40,000 Jews: Riga; 1,000-12,000 Jews: Ventspils, Liepaja, Jelgava, Krustpils, Rezekne, Ludza, Daugavpils, and Kraslava; 500-1,000 Jews: Talsi, Kuldiga, Aizpute, Tukums, Bauska, Jaunjelgava, plavinas, Livani, Vilaka, Karsava, Varaklani, Preili, and Dagda.

[Livland and Courland]

The nucleus of Latvian Jewry was formed by the Jews of *Livonia (Livland) and *Courland, the two principalities on the coast of the Baltic Sea which were incorporated within the Russian Empire during the 18th century. Livonia, with the city of *Riga, passed to Russia from Sweden in 1721. Courland, formerly an autonomous duchy, was incorporated into Russia as a province in 1795. Both these provinces were situated outside the *Pale of Settlement, and so only those Jews who could prove that they had lived there legally before the provinces became part of Russia were authorized to reside in the region.

Nevertheless, the Jewish population of the Baltic region gradually increased because, from time to time, additional Jews who enjoyed special "privileges", such as university graduates, those engaged in "useful" profession, etc., received authorization to settle there.

In the middle of the 19th century, there were about 9,000 Jews in the province of Livonia. By 1897 the Jewish population had already increased to 26,793 (3.5% of the population), about three-quarters of which lived in Riga. In Courland there were 22,734 Jews in the middle of the 19th century, while according to the census of 1897, some 51,072 Jews (7.6% of the population) lived there.

The Jews of Courland formed a special group within Russian Jewry. On the one hand they were influenced by the German culture which prevailed in this region, and on the other by that of neighbouring Lithuanian Jewry.

Haskalah penetrated early to the Livonia (col. 1462)

and Courland communities but assimilation did not make the same headway there as in Western Europe. Courland Jewry developed a specific character, combining features of both East European and German Jewry.

[WW I expulsions and return - independent Latvia 1918-1939]

During World War I when the Russian armies retreated from Courland (April 1915), the Russian military authorities expelled thousands of Jews to the provinces of the interior. A considerable number later returned to Latvia as repatriates after the independent republic was established.

Three districts of the province of Vitebsk, in which most of the population was Latvian (Latgale in Lettish), including the large community of *Daugavpils (Dvinsk), were joined to Courland (Kurzeme) and Livonia (Vidzeme), and the independent Latvian Republic was established (November 1918). At first, a liberal and progressive spirit prevailed in the young state but the democratic regime was shortlived. Influenced by Fascism in Western Europe [[and probably also by dictatorship in Lithuania]], the nationalist and chauvinistic elements of Latvia grew more arrogant.

On May 15, 1934, the prime minister Karlis Ulmanis dissolved parliament in a coup d'état, the leaders of the labour movement and the activists of the socialist and progressive organizations were imprisoned in a concentration camp, and Latvia became a totalitarian state. Ulmanis was proclaimed dictator and "leader" of the nation. His government inclined toward Nazi Germany [[and probably also to racist Poland]].

Jewish Population in the Latvian Republic.

Before World War I there were about 190,000 Jews in the territories of Latvia (7.4% of the total population). During the war years, (col. 1463)

many of them were expelled to the interior of Russia, while others escaped from the war zone. In 1920 the Jews of Latvia numbered 79,644 (5% of the population). After the signing of the peace treaty between the Latvian Republic and the Soviet Union on Aug. 11, 1920, repatriates began to return from Russia; these included a considerable number of Jewish refugees.

By 1925 the Jewish population had increased to 95,675, the largest number of Jews during the period of Latvia's existence as an independent state. After that year the number of Jews gradually decreased, and in 1935 had declined to 93,479 (4.8% of the total). The causes of this decline were emigration by part of the younger generation and a decline in the natural increase through limiting the family to one or two children by the majority.

Between 1925 and 1935 over 6,000 Jews left Latvia (the overwhelming majority of them for Erez Israel (Ereẓ Israel), while the natural increase only partly replaced these departures. The largest communities were Riga with 43,672 Jews (11.3% of the total) in 1935, Daugavpils with 11,106 (25%), and *Libau (Liepaja) with 7,379 (13%). (col. 1464)

Economic Life. [Jewish economic positions in important branches - Jewish banks and societies]

Jews already played an important role in industry, commerce, and banking before World War I. After the establishment of the republic, a severe crisis overtook the young state. The government had not yet consolidated itself and the country had become impoverished as a result of World War I and the struggle for independence which Latvia had conducted for several years (1918-20) against both Germany and the Soviet Union. With the cessation of hostilities, Latvia found itself retarded in both the administrative and economic spheres. Among other difficulties, there was running inflation.

Jews made a large contribution to the upbuilding of the state from the ruins of the war and its consequences. Having much experience in the export of the raw materials of timber and linen before World War I, upon their return from Russia they resumed export of these goods on their own initiative. They also developed a variegated industry, and a considerable (col. 1464)

part of the import trade, such as that of petrol, coal and textiles, was concentrated in their hands. However, once the Jews had made their contribution, the authorities began to force them out of their economic positions and to deprive them of their sources of livelihood.

[[Nationalism said that the Jews were a "Jewish nation". So they were considered foreigners or even enemies and were driven out of national economic life, and Jewish organizations gave help from abroad]].

Although, in theory, there were no discriminatory laws against the Jews in democratic Latvia and they enjoyed equality of rights, in practice the economic policy of the government was intended to restrict their activities. This was also reflected in the area of credit. The Jews of Latvia developed a ramified network of loan banks for the granting of credit with the support of the *American Jewish Joint Committee and the *Jewish Colonization Association (I.C.A.). Cooperative credit societies for craftsmen, small tradesmen, etc., were established and organized within a central body, the Alliance of Cooperative Societies for Credit. However, the Jewish banks and cooperative societies were discriminated against in the sphere of public credit and the state bank was in practice closed to them. These societies nevertheless functioned on sound foundations. Their initial capital was relatively larger than that of the non-Jewish cooperative societies. In 1931 over 15,000 members were organized within the Jewish societies.

Jews were particularly active in the following branches of industry: timber, matches, beer, tobacco, hides, textiles, canned foods (especially fish), and flour milling. About one-half of the Jews of Latvia engaged in commerce, the overwhelming majority of them in medium and small trade. About 29% of the Jewish population was occupied in industry and about 7% in the liberal professions. There were no Jews in the governmental administration.

The economic situation of the majority of Latvia's Jews became difficult. Large numbers were ousted from their economic position and lost their livelihood as a result of [[anti-Semitic]] government policy and most of them were thrust into small trade, peddling, and bartering [[sale]] in various goods at the second-hand clothes markets in the suburbs of Riga and the provincial towns.

The decline in their status was due to three principal causes:

-- the government assumed the monopoly of the grain trade, thus removing large numbers of Jews from this branch of trade, without accepting them as salaried workers of providing them with any other kind of employment;

-- the Latvian cooperatives enjoyed wide governmental support and functioned in privileged conditions in comparison to the Jewish enterprises;

-- and Jews had difficulty in obtaining credit.

In addition to the above, the Jewish population was subjected to a heavy burden of [[anti-Semitic]] taxes. (col. 1465)

Public and Political Life.

Latvian Jewry continued the communal and popular traditions of Russian Jewry, of which it formed a part until 1918. On the other hand, it was also influenced by the culture of West European Jewry, being situated within its proximity (i.e., East Prussia). In its spiritual life there was thus a synthesis of Jewish tradition and secular culture. From the social-economic point of view the Jews of Latvia did not form one group, and there were considerable social differences between them.

They engaged in a variety of occupations and professions: there were large, medium, and small merchants, industrialists, and different categories of craftsmen, workers, salesmen, clerks, teachers, and members of the liberal professions such as physicians, lawyers, and engineers. All these factors - economic and spiritual - were practically reflected in public life: in the national Jewish sphere and in the general political life of the state.

The Jewish population was also represented in the Latvian parliament. In the National Council which was formed during the first year of Latvian independence and existed until April 1920, there were also representatives of the national minorities, including seven Jews, among them Paul *Mintz, who acted as state (col. 1465)

comptroller (1919-21), and Mordecai *Dubin (Agudat Israel). On May 1, 1920, the Constituent Assembly, which was elected by a relatively democratic vote, was convened. It was to function until Oct. 7, 1922, and included nine Jewish delegates who represented all groups in the Jewish population ([[racist]] Zionists, National Democrats, Bundists, Agudat Israel).

The number of Jewish delegates in the four parliaments which were elected in Latvia until the coup d'état of 1934 was as follows: six in the first (1922-25), five in the second (1925-28) and the third (1928-31), and three in the fourth (1931-34). Among the regular deputies were Mordecai Dubin (Agudat Israel), Mordecai *Nurock (Mizrachi), Matityahu Max Laserson (Ze'irei Zion), and Noah *Meisel (Bund). The last two were not reelected to the fourth parliament. (col. 1466)

Culture and Education. [National schooling in Hebrew, Yiddish, German and Russian since 1919 - institutions]

On Dec. 8, 1919, the general bill on schools was passed by the National Council; this coincided with the bill on the cultural *autonomy of the minorities. IN the Ministry of Education, there were special departments for the minorities. The engineer Jacob Landau headed the Jewish department. A broad network of Hebrew and Yiddish schools, in which Jewish children received a free education [[free?]], was established. In addition to these, there were also Russian and German schools for Jewish children, chosen in accordance with the language of their families and wishes of their parents. These were, however, later excluded from the Jewish department because, by decision of the Ministry of Education, only the Hebrew and Yiddish schools were included within the scope of Jewish autonomy.

In 1933 there were 98 Jewish elementary schools with approximately 12,000 pupils and 742 teachers, 18 secondary schools with approximately 2,000 pupils and 286 teachers, and four vocational schools with 300 pupils and 37 teachers. Pupils attended religious or secular schools according to their parents' wishes. There were also government pedagogic institutes for teachers in Hebrew and Yiddish, courses for kindergarten teachers, popular universities, a popular Jewish music academy, evening schools for working youth, a Yiddish theater, and cultural clubs.

There was a Jewish press reflecting a variety of trends.

[Coup d'état on 15 May 1934]

With the Fascist coup d'état of May 15, 1934, Jewish autonomy was abolished. All political organizations were outlawed, except for *Agudat Israel. The supervision of the Jewish schools was entrusted to the latter, which closed all the secular Yiddish schools, while the curricula of the secular Hebrew schools were emptied of their content. The teachers were compelled to wear skullcaps; they were forbidden to teach *Bialik and even to use S. *Dubnow's history. (col. 1466)

Map with Jewish communities in
                Latvia (borders of 1918-40). Population figures for

Jewish communities in Latvia. List of alternative names for places shown on map (1935)
Latvian name
Old German name
Old Russian name
P lavinas
from: Latvia; In: Encyclopaedia Judaica 1971, vol. 10, col. 1463

[World War II with Sovietization and then German Nazi occupation]

With the establishment of the Soviet regime in (col. 1466)

Latvia in June 1940, even these sad remnants of Jewish autonomy [[Agudat Israel schools]] were liquidated. Upon the outbreak of World War II in 1939 Latvia was compelled to sign a treaty with the Soviet Union, and placed air bases in various parts of the country at its disposal. In June 1940 a Communist government was set up and in July Latvia was proclaimed a Soviet Republic, and was incorporated withing the Soviet Union.



On the eve of Hitler's attack, a large group of Latvians including several thousand Jews, were deported by the Soviet authorities to Siberia and other parts of Soviet Asia as politically undesirable elements. During the Nazi attack of Latvia a considerable number of Jews also succeeded in fleeing to the interior of the Soviet Union;

[[The Red Army undertook the Big Flight from Barbarossa in 1941 with many Jews. Arbitrary flight to central Russia without connection to the army was not allowed]].


Holocaust Period. [Establishing the Nazi regime - mass murder on Latvian Jews]


Latvia was occupied by the Germans during the first weeks of the German-Soviet war in July 1941. It became part of the new Reich Kommissariat "Ostland", officially designated as "Generalbezirk Lettland". Otto Heinrich Drexler was appointed its commissioner general with headquarters in Riga, the seat of the Reich commissioner for Ostland, Hinrich Lose (see *Lithuania). At the end of July 1941 the Germans [[and their collaborators]] replaced the military with a civil administration. One of its first acts was the promulgation of a series of anti-Jewish ordinances. An administration composed of local pro-Nazi elements was also established to which Latvian general councilors were appointed. Their chief was Oskar Dankers, a former Latvian army general. [[...]]

It is estimated that some 75,000 Latvian Jews fell into Nazi hands. Even before the Nazi administration began persecuting the Latvian Jews, they had suffered from anti-Semitic excesses at the hands of the Latvian activists. Chief among these were the members of the Aizsargi paramilitary organization and the Fascist anti-Semitic organization called Perkonkrusts (Pērkonkrusts), which later collaborated with the Nazis in the annihilation of the Jewish community.

The Einsatzgruppen ("action commandos") played a leading role in the destruction of Latvian Jews, according to information given in their own reports, especially in the report of S.S.-Brigadefuehrer (General) Stahlecker, the commander of Einsatzgruppe A, whose unit operated on the northern Russian front and in the occupied Baltic republics.

[[The numbers of Jews in the German reports are probably much too high because the Nazi leaders wanted to present successes and because they counted also half Jews, quarter Jews and three quarter Jews as "Jews". The Nazi collaborators were very important because of the language. The German Nazi system distinguished different races of East Europeans. The Baltes were the "first", then came the Ukrainians, and the Belorussians were the last]].

His account covers the period from the end of June up to Oct. 15, 1941. At the instigation of the Einsatzgruppe, the Latvian auxiliary police carried out a pogrom against the Jews in Riga. All synagogues were destroyed and 400 Jews were killed. According to Stahlecker's report the number of Jews killed in mass executions by Einsatzgruppe A by the end of October 1941 in Riga, Jelgava (Mitau), Liepaja, Valmiera, and Daugavpils totaled 30,025, and by the end of December 1941, 35,238 Latvian Jews had been killed; 2,500 Jews remained in the Riga ghetto and 950 in the Daugavpils ghetto.

[Jews from Central Europe deported to Latvia - forests for mass killing - concentration camps Salaspils and Kaiserwald]

At the end of 1941 and the beginning of 1942, Jews deported from Germany, Austria, Czechoslovakia, and other German-occupied countries began arriving in Latvia. Some 15,000 "Reich Jews" were settled in several streets of the liquidated "greater Riga ghetto". Many transports were taken straight from the Riga railroad station to execution sites in the Rumbuli and Bikernieks forests near Riga, and elsewhere. In 1942 about 800 Jews from Kaunas ghetto were brought to Riga and some of them participated in the underground organization in the Riga ghetto.

The German occupying power in Latvia also kept Jews in "barracks camps", i.e., near their places of forced labour. A considerable number of such camps were located in the Riga area and other localities. Larger concentration camps included those at Salaspils and Kaiserwald (Meza Parks). (col. 1467)

The Salaspils concentration camp, set up at the end of 1941, contained thousands of people, including many Latvian and foreign Jews. Conditions in this camp, one of the worst in Latvia, led to heavy loss of life among the inmates. The Kaiserwald concentration camp, established in the summer of 1943, contained the Jewish survivors from the ghettos of Riga, Daugavpils, Liepaja, and other places, as well as non-Jews. At the end of September 1943 Jews from the liquidated Vilna ghetto were also taken to Kaiserwald.

[[All these war crimes were committed by German forces and their collaborators]].

When the Soviet victories in the summer of 1944 forced a German retreat from the Baltic states, the surviving inmates of the Kaiserwald camp were deported by the Germans to *Stutthof concentration camp near Danzig, and from there were sent to various other camps.

[[Probably they were sent to the tunnel systems for underground weapon and fuel production, with heavy losses]].


On April 7, 1945, the Soviet press published the "Declaration of the Special Government Commission charges with the inquiry into the crimes committed by the German-Fascist aggressors during their occupation of the Latvian Socialist Republic". This document devotes a chapter to the persecution and murder of Jews. The declaration lists Nazis held responsible for the crimes committed in Latvia under German occupation. They include

-- Lohse, the Reich commissioner for Ostland;
-- P. Jeckeln, chief of police for Ostland;
-- Drexler, commissioner general for Latvia;
-- Lange, chief of Gestapo;
-- Krause, chief of the Riga ghetto and commandant of the Salaspils concentration camp;
-- Sauer, commandant of the Kaiserwald concentration camp;
-- and several dozen other Nazi criminals involved in the destruction of Latvian Jewry.

[[The local collaborators who had been very important because of the language were hardly pursued. Many could flee to the Reich and disguised themselves at the end as Jewish refugees, were helped in the DP camps and could emigrate to oversee countries]].

On Jan. 26, 1946, the war tribunal of the Riga military district began a trial of a group of Nazi war criminals, among the Jeckeln, one of the men responsible for the mass Aktion on the Riga ghetto at the end of 1941. He and six others were sentenced to death by hanging; the sentence was carried out in Riga on Feb. 3, 1946. Other trials were held in Soviet Latvia after the liberation, but altogether only a small number of Germans and Latvians who had taken part in the murder of Latvian Jewry was brought to justice.

Latvians of varying backgrounds also took an active part in the persecution and murder of the Jews in the country outside Latvia. At the time of the German retreat in the summer of 1944, many of these collaborators fled to Germany. After the war, as assumed *Displaced Persons, they received aid from UNRRA, from the *International Refugee Organization (IRO), and other relief organizations (col. 1468)

for Nazi victims, and some of them emigrated to the U.S. and other countries overseas. Nevertheless a few Latvians risked their lives in order to save Jews. One such, Jan Lipke, helped to save several dozen Jews of the Riga ghetto by providing them with hideouts.


[Latvian Jews in the Soviet army 1941-1945 - high death rate]

Several thousand Latvian Jews had fought in the Soviet army's Latvian division, the 201st (43rd Gard) and 304th, and many were killed or wounded in battle, while a considerable number had earned military awards for bravery at the front.


After the Liberation [Jews in Latvia after Soviet re-occupation]

About 1,000 Latvian Jews survived their internment in concentration camps;most of them refused repatriation and remained in the Displaced Persons camps in Germany, Austria, and Italy. Along with the rest of the survivors they eventually settled in new homes, mostly in Israel. In Latvia itself, several hundred Jews had somehow managed to survive. A public demonstration was held in Riga a few days after its liberation, in which 60 or 70 of the surviving Jews participated. Gradually, some of the Jews who had found refuge in the Soviet Union came back.

[Census 1959]

According to the population census taken in the Soviet Union in 1959, there were 36,592 Jews (17,096 men and 19,496 women; 1.75% of the total population) in the Latvian S.S.R. It may be assumed that about 10,000 of them were natives, including Jewish refugees who returned to their former residences from the interior of Russia, while the remainder came from other parts of the Soviet Union.

About 48% of the Jews declared Yiddish as their mother tongue. The others mainly declared Russian as their language, while only a few hundred described themselves as Lettish-speaking. Of the total, 30,267 Jews (5/6) lived in Riga. The others lived in Daugavpils and other towns.

[[About the general conditions of this census see *Russia]].

[Census 1970]

According to private estimates, the Jews of Latvia in 1970 numbered about 50,000. The overwhelming majority of them lived in Riga, the capital. Riga became one of the leading centers of national agitation among the Jews of the Soviet Union.

[JO. GA.]
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-- M. Schatz-Anin: Di Yidn in Letland (1924)
-- L. Ovchinski: Geschikhte fun di Yidn in Letland (1928)
-- I. Marein: 15 Yor Letland 1918-1933 (1933)
-- AJYB, 32 (1930/31), 266-75;
-- Yahadut Latvia, Sefer Zikkaron (1953)
-- M. Bobe: Perakim be-Toledot Yahadut Latvia (1965)

-- M. Kaufmann: Die Vernichtung der Juden Lettlands (1947)
-- Jewish Central Information Office, London: From Germany to the Riga Ghetto (1945)
-- IMT, vols. 23, 27, 37, indexes
-- I. Levinson: The Untold Story (1958)
-- J. Gar, in: Algemeyne Entsiklopedie, 6 (1963), 375-94
-- G. Reitlinger: The Final Solution (1968); index s.v. Baltic States
-- R. Hilberg: The Destruction of the European Jews (1967), index
-- E. Avotins: J. Dzurkalis-V. Petersons, Daugavas Vanagi, Who Are They? (1963).> (col. 1469)

Encyclopaedia Judaica (1971): Latvia, vol.
                        10, col. 1462
Encyclopaedia Judaica (1971): Latvia, vol. 10, col. 1462
Encyclopaedia Judaica (1971): Latvia, vol.
                        10, col. 1463-1464
Encyclopaedia Judaica (1971): Latvia, vol. 10, col. 1463-1464
Encyclopaedia Judaica (1971): Latvia, vol.
                        10, col. 1465-1466
Encyclopaedia Judaica (1971): Latvia, vol. 10, col. 1465-1466
Encyclopaedia Judaica (1971): Latvia, vol.
                        10, col. 1467-1468
Encyclopaedia Judaica (1971): Latvia, vol. 10, col. 1467-1468
Encyclopaedia Judaica (1971): Latvia, vol.
                        10, col. 1469
Encyclopaedia Judaica (1971): Latvia, vol. 10, col. 1469


Further information about Jews in Latvia

Von: Shamir Latvia <shamir@shamir.lv>
An: shamir@shamir.lv 
Betreff: Opening of Riga Ghetto Museum, new calendar, data base of children's names & Festival
Datum: Tue, 14. Sep 2010 08:19:03

<Dear friends,
Please, find news of Shamir activities below:

Riga  Ghetto  Museum  requests  the  pleasure  of  your company at the opening  ceremony the Museum on September 21, 2010, at 12:00. Address:
Riga, Maskavas 14a, (entrance from Krasta street).

September  1st,  the  new  Jewish  calendar  was released. This unique calendar  is  dedicated  to  the  history of Jewish development during Latvia’s  First  Republic,  a little known theme for today’s readers. http://shamir.lv/en/item/117-jewish_calendar_5771.html

Data  base  of  the  names  of  Jewish  children, who perished in the Holocaust in Latvia http://www.rgm.lv/db/

Full information about Jewish Culture Festival 5771 in Riga, video and photos: http://shamir.lv/en/menu/48-jewish_culture_festival_5771.html

Wishing you a happy and sweet New Year, Rabbi Menachem Barkahan

Religious community "Shamir"  
tel.  + 371 67270827
fax. + 371 67271793


Von: Shamir Latvia <shamir@shamir.lv>
An: michael.palomino@gmx.ch
Betreff: Association "Shamir" in 2010
Datum: Thu, 23. Dec 2010 11:01:59

Information about Jews in Latvia from Rabbi Menachem Barkahan: Ghetto museum has opened

                      Barkahan at the opening of the ghetto museum of
Rabbi Barkahan at the opening of the ghetto museum of Riga
                      of the ghetto museum, choir
Opening of the ghetto museum, choir

                      of the ghetto museum, mayor's speech
Opening of the ghetto museum, mayor's speech
                      ghetto museum, sign board
Riga's ghetto museum, sign board

                      ghetto, memorial 01
Riga ghetto, memorial 01
                      ghetto, memorial 02
Riga ghetto, memorial 02

                      ghetto museum, information boards
Riga ghetto museum, information boards
                      Menachem Barkahan, portrait
Rabbi Menachem Barkahan, portrait

                      for repair
House for repair
                      ghetto, board, zoom
Riga ghetto, board, zoom

<Year 2010 became a very productive but complicated one for association and   religious  community  “Shamir”.  As  an  independent, non-profit organization,   we  rely  on  the  generous  support of our friends to perpetuate  the memory and heritage of previous generations of Latvian  Jews  and  the  Holocaust in Latvia. Now more than ever, we need your  immediate  help, so that we can continue. We have accomplished much -  but   there is so much more still to do, and we thank you for helping  us   continue  our  important  mission  of preserving our history for  future  generations.

In 2010 we have accomplished the following events:

1.       Riga  Ghetto  and  Latvian  Holocaust  museum  was  opened on September  2010
2.       Second International Festival of Jewish culture gathered more than    4  000  visitors  for  10  events  in  Latvia  and  Lithuania, international  celebrities of Jewish music were staring.
3.      March “Steps for Life”, July 04, in memory of 90 000 in Latvia  murdered  Jews gathered about 700 participants from Latvia and abroad in   the  streets  of  former  Riga  ghetto  till  the Gogol synagogue memorial,  where candles ner neshama were lighted.
4.       Street  was named after Chief Rabbi of Riga and Latvia Nathan Barkan,  the first one in Eastern Europe named after an orthodox Rabbi.
5.      “Each  child  has  a  name”.  On September 02 names of 16 000 Jewish   children  killed  in  Latvia in the Holocaust were recited in Vermanes  park.
6.      Jewish  Encyclopedia  of  Latvia.  Literary  editing of 6 000 entries  was completed.

The program for 2011 is to be published in nearest future.

Donations  may  be  wired  to our bank account, by paypal or by check. Association “Shamir” has charity organization certificate.

With respect,
Rabbi Menachem Barkahan>

Website of Riga Ghetto museum (rgm): http://www.rgm.lv/?lang=en
Film about the Riga Ghetto museum: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=krWyYUdMKG0&feature=player_embedded

Информация о евреях в Латвии с раввином Менахемом Barkahan: Гетто музее открылась

<Уважаемые друзья!

2010  год  был  очень  продуктивным,  хотя  и тяжелым, для религиозной общины  и  общества  «Шамир».    Будучи  независимой  и  бесприбыльной
организацией,   мы  рассчитываем на поддержку наших друзей. Сейчас как никогда    нам   необходима   ваше   участие  для  продолжения  работы исследования    и  увековечивания  памяти  латвийского  еврейства.  Мы сделали   много, но еще больше необходимо сделать. И мы благодарим вас за помощь в деле сохранения нашей общей истории для будущих поколений.

В 2010 году мы провели следующие мероприятия:

1.      Музей Рижского гетто и Холокоста в Латвии. 21 сентября открыта  первая очередь.
2.       Второй  международный  фестиваль  еврейской культуры 5771, 10 мероприятий   в  Латвии и Литве, около 4 000 зрителей, участие мировых звезд  еврейской музыки
3.       Марш  «Шаги  живых»  4 июля в память о 90 000 убитых в Латвии евреях.   Впервые  в  Латвии,  около  700 участников из Латвии и из-за рубежа  прошли   по  улицам бывшего гетто. Марш закончился у мемориала Хоральной  синагоги зажиганием памятных свечей «нер нешама».
4.       Улица  имени  Главного  раввина  Риги и Латвии Натана Баркана торжественно  открыта 2 июля. Впервые в Восточной Европе улица названа именем ортодоксального раввина.
5.       «У  каждого ребенка есть имя» - впервые в Латвии 2 сентября с эстрады  Верманского парка были зачитаны имена 16 000 еврейских детей,  убитых в Латвии в годы Холокоста.
6.       Латвийская  еврейская  энциклопедия.  Завершено  литературное редактирование  более 6 000 статей Программа на 2011 год будет опубликована в начале года.

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С уважением,
Раввин Менахем Баркахан>

Сайт музей Рижского гетто (rgm): http://www.rgm.lv/?lang=en
Фильм о музее Рижского гетто: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=krWyYUdMKG0&feature=player_embedded


Shamir Latvia <shamir@shamir.lv>
March for Life, 04.07.2011
Thu, 14. Jul 2011 11:54:55

Memorial march “Steps for Life” took place in Riga on July 04, 2011. More than 500 participants walked through former Riga ghetto territory in memory of events that happened 70 years ago.
Thanks to all who were with us.
Rabbi Menachem Barkahn

4 июля 2011 года в Риге прошло памятное мероприятие "Шаги живых". Более 500 участников прошли по улицам бывшего гетто в память о событиях 70-летней давности. Спасибо тем, кто был с нами.
Раввин Менахем Баркахан

2011.gada 4.jūlijā Rīgā notika piemiņas pasākums “Dzīvo gājiens”. Vairāk nekā 500 pasākuma dalībnieku devās pa bijušā Rīgas geto ielām, pieminot notikumus, kas norisinājās pirms 70 gadiem.
Paldies tiem, kas bija kopā ar mums.
Rabīns Menahems Barkahans

Religious community "Shamir"  
tel.  + 371 67270827
mob. + 371 26517506
fax. + 371 67271793


Photo sources