November 29, 2018

Fencing completed at historic Buchach Jewish cemetery in Ukraine

The ESJF is delighted to announce the completion of fencing at the Buchach Jewish cemetery in the Ternopil region of Western Ukraine.

This historic Jewish cemetery is home to around 2,000 existing gravestones, dating back to the 1590s. Ranging over some three hectares, it is the largest fencing project undertaken by the ESJF to date.

Part of Poland prior to WWII, and before that a part of the historic region of Eastern Galicia in the Austro-Hungarian Empire, Buchach has been home to a Jewish community for centuries, with references appearing in documents as far back as 1500. The community underwent a notable period of growth in the 18th century.

At the end of the century Buchach emerged as an important centre of the Jewish enlightenment, during which time Pinchas Eliyahu Horowitz, author of “Sefer ha-Brit”, lived in the city.

In the 19th century, a small Hasidic court was established in Buchach, led by the town’s rabbi, Avraham David Worman, a disciple of Moshe Leib of Sasov.

However, the community is most famous for its inhabitants in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Among these are Shmuel Yosef Agnon, the Nobel Literature laureate, born in Buchach in 1887, who spent his childhood there; Emanuel Ringelblum, a prominent Jewish historian and chronicler of the Warsaw ghetto, born in Buchach in 1900; and the famous Austrian Nazi hunter, Simon Wiesenthal, born in Buchach in 1908.

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