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Pryłuki (Polish), Прилуки (Ukrainian), Прилуки – Priluki (Russian), פרילוקי (Hebrew), פּריłוקי(Yiddish)

If your ancestors are Myasnikov from Priluki (or you have some information about them) – please contact me. It is possible that we are  relatives :)

Priluki is a city in Chernigov district, Ukraine .

Priluki is a historic town located in Chernihiv region of northern Ukraine, center of Priluki district (don’t confuse it with Old Priluka – town in Vinnitsa district, former shtetl). Priluki is located on the Ydai River, a tributary of the Sula. The city’s estimated population is 61,600 (as of 2005).


First mention of Priluki dated by1085 when it was a fortess on the border of Kiev Rus’ which was founded in times of Yaroslav Mudriy.

In 1569-1648 Priluki was a part of Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth.

In the 17th century the Cossacks took part in the Khmelnytsky uprising. The fertile soil of the Udai basin proved itself attractive not only to marauders, but also to hard-working people fleeing from backbreaking toil. The number of inhabitants of Pryluky and adjacent villages grew considerably in the 17th century. One of the documents kept in the archives of Stockholm, Sweden stated that there were 800 chimneys, i.e. 800 houses, in Pryluky in 1632. Assuming that each house accommodated at least six persons, about 5,000 people lived in the city at that time.

In 1648, Hetman Bohdan Khmelnytsky introduced a new system of territorial-administrative division in Ukraine, having divided the country into regiments. Under this system the city of Pryluky became the military center of the Pryluky Regiment and Colonel Ivan Shkurat-Melnychenko was appointed its first commander.

In XVIII century in Priluki lived only few jewish families. Which was a result of many decrees by hetmans Ivan Skoropadskiy and Danila Apostol who prohibited Jews to live in Leftbank Ukraine.

City got Magdeburg right only in 1783. We can assume that strong Jewish community appeared in Priluki at this time.

Current city plan was created in 1802 when old streets were united in one central and add many perpendicular another streets.

Intense construction started after the great fire in 1831, which almost completely destroyed the old building.

Collection of city plans:

There were 2,007 Jews in Priluki in 1847, 5,722 (31% of the total population) in 1897.

In 1855 among Priluki Jews were 124 merchants of third guild and 690 bourgeois.

In 1859 there were synagogue and one Jewish prayer house, in 1864 – 4 synagogues.

In the end of XIX – beginning of XX century in Priluki were 2 private theatres: Jewish and Intim (belong to A.M.Bukler).

There were 4 brick factories in 1869. In the beginning of XX century which belong to Mariengof Beniamin Levinovich (first brick factory on Algazina Str., 60), Smilyanskiy Daviv-Itzhok Shlomovich (former second brick factory on Frynze Str., 42 not far from Dolgin’s mill, territory build up by private houses), brothers Shershevsky Neah-Israel and Yankel Izrailevich (third brick factory on Kievskaya Str., 210; in 1910 owners were Manilo Kopel Leibovich and Shershevskiy yankel Izrailevich),  Kapara Vladimir Andeevich (Kievskaya Str., 131).

City plan by 1859-1863

City plan by 1859-1863

Yehuda Leib Tsirelson

Yehuda Leib Tsirelson

In 1901 and 1903 the official rabbi was Joseph P. Flavievich Lyapidus in 1907-09 – Yehuda Leib Tsirelson,  in 1911 – Zelman Geselovich Tsifrinovich.

Since 1910 spiritual rabbi was Abram Joshua Heschel-Zamsky (1875, Starodub -?).

Jews owned two tobacco factories, two lour mills, and small oil reineries. Many Jewish tailors sewed ready-made garments, which were sold in fairs in faraway towns. Apart from  hadarim  there were schools for boys and girls, and from the beginning of the 20th century, there was a Hebrew-language school.

Relief society for help to Frid’s Jewish male secondary school was created. During next 2 year it collected more than 2000 rubles.

Priluki enterpreneurs list from Russian Empire Business Directories by 1903:

Difficult economical and politicial conditions cause huge wave of  Jewish emmigration to USA and other Western countries in the end of XIX – beginning of XX century. Emmigrants from Priluki created in USA relief society “Ershter Priluki”.

Due to hard etnical and political restrictions Jewish youth actively take part in revolution movement. In Summer 1903 local “Bund” activists organised artisan’s meeting in support of general strike in South Russia Empire. Branch of “Poale Zion” existed in Priluki in1905.

In Business Directory by 1908 mentioned “Jewish relief society for help to poor Jews” and listed bussinesmans who were a members and main donators: Abram Berk.Dolgin, Samuel Morduch. Dunaevsky secretary Yevsei Isr. Yasnogradsky, Sham. Benyam. Rabinovich, Mend. Zelman. Fratkin, merchant  N. Ts.Zolotarev, Simon Isaac. Boumshteyn, Morduch Zayneymork Moses Uriev. Kogon, Berko Itsk.Suponitsky, Abraham Leib. Hirsch, Burko Morduch. Zapodinsky.

Most photo salons (3 from 5) belonged to Jews in 1908. Their owners were Y.V. Vinshteyn (Konotopskaya Str.), Solomon Leibov. Krasnopolskiy (Gimnazicheskaya Str.) and Evzer Ioselev. Rivkin.

Photo taken circa 1910 in Priluki. Family of Aizek (1875-1941) and Minya Myasnikov (?-1941).  Childrens: Rahil (1898-1970), Rivka-Beila (1901-1986), Boris (1905-1941), Manya (?-1941), Raya (1911-1980). Only 3 members survived in Holocaust.

Photo taken circa 1910 in Priluki. Family of Aizek (1875-1941) and Minya Myasnikov (?-1941).
Childrens: Rahil (1898-1970), Rivka-Beila (1901-1986), Boris (1905-1941), Manya (?-1941), Raya (1911-1980). Only 3 members survived in Holocaust.

First commercial printing house in Priluki was founded in 1883 by Yankel Morduhovich Linkov on the market square. Next printing house was founded in 1904 by Aaron Yakovich Mirov in building on Kievskaya Str., 198a (building still exist). In 1908 they were the only two printing house in Priluki.

In 1910 there existed 6 synagogues and Talmud Torah, 3 private Jewish  female and one male secondary schools. In 1910, there were 1,206 Jewish houses

Before Revolution 206 Priluki Jews and their family members were assigned to “Merchant” class and 20 were “Nobel” Priluki citizens.

First Priluki telecommunication station was build in 1910 by Ginsberg. State station was built in 1912 only.

Shops on the market square. Pre Revolution photo.

Shops on the market square. Pre Revolution photo.

In 1913 Jewish businessman Abraham Berkov Dolgin build 4-store mill near the railway station. It became a trade point for corn trade from a whole Priluki povet. Mill was burned during WWII and finally destroyed in 1990.

Before Revolution in Priluki existed Jewish Hospital. First time it was mentioned in 1900. Hospital was  build for cost of tobacco factory owner Benia Rabinvich.

Tobacco factories

Tobacco industry play important role in Priluki alredy more than 150 years. Before WWII these factories were place of employment for hundreds jewish workers. First tobacco factort was build in 1876. In ten years were build two anothers.

1. Most famous tobacco factory in Priluki was founded by Benni Rabinovich and Zalman Fratkin in January 22, 1889 on the right bank of Udai river in village Brodki (united with Priluki in ~ 1900). In 1903 there were 447 workers. Among them was my great great grendfather Aizek Myasnikoff, who works here whole his life.

In 1906 on the territory was build a synagogue for jewish workers.

Tobacco factory of Rabinovich and Fratkin. Beginning of XX century

Tobacco factory of Rabinovich and Fratkin. Beginning of XX century


Before Revolution factory exported toacco to Germany, Romania, China, Turkey and other countries. It was a biggest enterprise in Priluki. Factory became a joint stock company in 1916.

In 1920 factory was nationalised and became Second State Tobacco factory. Till 1938 it was named in honor of Christian Rakovsky. Priluki tobacco factory was among the biggest in Ukraine.

During WWII eqipment was evacuated but buildings were destroyed by retreating Germans. Factory was rebuilded after Priluki’s liberation.

Now it belong to British Tobacco and still the biggest and most prosperous enterprise in Priluki with highest salaries and best conditions for employees. It produce 30% of all cigarettes in Ukraine.

Pre Revolution plan of tobacco factory. Photo from factory's museum

Pre Revolution plan of tobacco factory. Photo from factory’s museum

2. Rozenberg’s tobacco factory was located in building which located on  Pyshkina Str. 62a,b,v

3. Volodarskiy’s tobacco factory was located on Dragomanova Str. It burned in 1915.

Cotton factory was created on the same place in 1927 and used Volodarskiy’s building.

Address: Ivanivska Str., 68.

4. Tobacco factory “Rybolov” was created by Priluki jewish merchants E. Rozenberg and B. Dvorkin in 1886. In 1904 there were 29 workers. Factory was located in private building on Oleksandrovskaya Str. (now Kievskaya Str.). Now in this building locates knitting workshop of hosiery factory.

In 1920 tobacco factory “Rybolov” was nationalised and united with Second State Tobacco factory (former Rabynovich’s and Fratkin’s).

In Business Directory by 1901 mentioned tobacco factory owned by Boris Galperin and brothers Fratkin’s but I haven’t find any additional information about location and owners.

Civil War pogroms

First Jewish pogrom happened in October 1917. Next was organised by Directoria soldiers in December 1918.

Denikin’s army occupied Priluki from August 25, 1919 till December 1, 1919. It was a worst time for Jewish population.

During the civil war there were pogroms on October 23, 1917 and during a whole period of Denikin’s occupation in Summer-Autumn 1919.

In Chernigov Archiv stored petiotions of Priluki citizens submited in 1924 who suffered during pogroms. In these documents mentioned names, witnesses, listed killed and injured relatives and neighbors, stolen property. I checked all these documents and find next names of killed victims: Elimeishe Gulinskiy, Blinkin Veniamin, Mendel Berkovich Bruh (54 years old), Gleih Yankel Mendelevich (22 yeras old), Tantlevskiy Boris Aizikovich, Rachinskiy Motya Israilevich (20 years old), Minya Israilevna Kyznetsova and his 3 children 4 years old, 3 years old and 6 months old, Zolotnitskaya Gisya Avramovna.

Jewish theater in Summer park. Beginning of XX century

Jewish theater in Summer park. Beginning of XX century

These citizens were injured: Haya Danilovna Gurevskaya, Rudavskaya Tana Beniaminovna (33 years old), Rivkin Yankel Nahmanovich (knocked eye), Haenko Vulf (62 years old), Zolotnitskiy Abraham Morduhovich (65 years old), Dunaevskaya Sarra Markovna (64 years old), Dunaevskiy Samuil Morduhovich (65 years old), Vcherashnya Sima (64 years old), Agranov Gershel (53 years old).

Of course in these 2 lists weren’t included relatives of person’s who left Priluki between 1919 and 1924.

In October 1920 pogrom was organised by detachments of Red Army.

In 1910’s-1920’s in USA existed United Priluker Relief Landsmanschaft, which helped to Pruluki Jews in hard times during and after Civil War.


The Zionists remained active for a couple of years ater the October Revolution. In 1921 a pioneer group went to Palestine, where they were among the founders of the kibbutz Kiryat Anavim. Their names are Avraham (Ben-Nariya) Lichtroub, Zeta Goldstein, Yehuda Levyatov, Efraim (Ben-Hayim ) Leibnsohn, Sonya Gershonovitz and Shalom Kaushansky (official kibbutz web-site

He-Chaluts movement i Priluki. Photo by 1917

He-Chaluts movement in Priluki. Photo by 1917

This photo was published in book “במאבק לגאולה” Tel-Aviv, 1956. People’s names on photo are (according numbers): 1 – Leibush Bieber, 2 – Sarah Belinkovich, 3 – Nachman Rayhenshteyn, 4 – Zita Goldstein – Levyatova, 5 – 6 – no names, 7 – Bella Izvozchikova, 8 – Yehuda Levyatov, 9 – Malka Pomeranian – Haklay, 10 – Joseph Dolgin, 11 – Ms. Drabkin, 12 – Shmaryahu Volovich, 13 – Jon Cohen – Goals, 14 – Abram Likhtarev (Ben Neria), 15 – Dr. Mordechai Feigelson (Giladi), 16 – Mina Izvozchikova – Tselnik (Yisraeli), 17 – Asriel Finkelstein, 18 – Ehevich

In Chernigov archiv stored very few documents about Zionist activity in region but most of them related to Priluki.
Due to these not numerous records Semen Grogorievich Belman (Head of Chernigov jewish community) find next names of Priluki dwellers:
– arrested in 1924 for counter-revolutionary activity
Isaak Abramovich Dolgin
Abraham-Yuda Zelmanovich Krupitskiy
– arrested in 1926 for keeping of zionist literature
Treister Iosif Tanovich
Borshevskiy Ineh Leibovich
– arrested in 1927 as a members of Gashomer Gatsair
Abraham Moiseevich Leibovskiy (born in 1909)
Isaak Efroimovich Gurevich (born in 1908)
Peisya Solomonovna Pinkovskaya (born in 1908)
Manya Grigorevna Tarnopolskaya (born in 1909)
Nyhym Morduhovich Levi (born in 1909)
Mila Udovich Grevneva (born in 1907)

After Civil War

In 1920’s Jewish life in Priluki and the whole Soviet Union changed significantly.
Priluki’s, Piryatin’s and Yagotin’s Jews get rights to communicate with authorities in Yiddish and recieve reply in same language. Special Jewish curt was opened here.

Jewish children asylum existed in 1920’s. Their parents were killed during pogroms in shtetls near Priluki like Piryatin, Lovitsa and Varva. These children’s testimony still store in Chernigov State Archiv…

In 1920’s all big enterprises were nationalised. Among them were “Jewish” Tobacco Factory by Rabinovich and Fratkin, Volodarskiy’s tobacco factory, Shahin’s and Dolgin’s mills.

Before 1920 in city there were only 2 electrical generators which belong to Jewish enterpreters Abraham Moiseevich Bukler (in intim theater) and Zolotarev (in cinema). Both genertors were nationalised in 1920.

In 1920, among 273 district’s deputies 2 represent “Paolei-Tzion” party.

In 1922 Jews were 22,6% of all laborers in Priluki and compose 1510 person.

In 1924/1925 Jews from Priluki organised 7 collective farms in Kherson District. Totaly were ressetled app.600 persons.

Some 65% of Priluki Jews worked as factory laborers and artisans, and about 165 were members of a Jewish kolkhoz named Nayer Shteyger (New way of life) . Jews numbered 9,001 (31.4% of the total population) in 1926, decreasing to 6,140 in 1939 (16.65%).

Priluki handicraftsman at 1925. Photo from <a title="" href=""></a>

Priluki handicraftsman at 1925. Photo from

In November, 1927 Big Synagogue was closed by initiative of workers 2nd tabacco factory and used as workers’ club. Building of the mikva was nationalized in 1920’s and return in rent to Jews after it was fully decline.

Newspaper “Priluker Emes” published in Priluki in1927:

Jewish population of Priluki:
1825 – 316
1847 – 1007 jews
1897 – 5722 (30,8%)
1910 – 9355 jews
1920 – 9363 jews
1939 – 6140 (16,7%)
1959 ~ 2000 (4,6%)
1979 ~ 1100 (1,6%)
2001 – 185 jews


Priluki was occupied by the Germans on September 18, 1941. Many Jews of Priluki succeeded in leaving before the occupation started. The remaining Jews were ordered to wear a white armband with a yellow star and they were prohibited from going to the market and the cinema. They were recruited for forced labor, such as repairing roads, clearing demolished buildings, etc. On October 15, 1941 a murder operation that had several Jewish victims was carried out, probably by the German Secret Field Police unit no. 730.

A ghetto was established at the beginning of 1942 in the building of School #4 (build by merchant Shkuratov in 1912) and nearby streets . From January 1942 groups of 30-40 young healthy men were systematically taken from the ghetto and executed at an unknown location. Most of the Jews of Priluki were killed in a mass murder operation in May 1942. Another mass murder was carried out by Germans in Priluki on September 10, 1942. The victims were Jews who had hidden or escaped from the previous killing operation.

Briskin and Entin - two survivors from Priluki ghetto near mass grave in Pliskunovka Ravine

Briskin and Entin – two survivors from Priluki ghetto near mass grave in Pliskunovka Ravine

Jews from Polova, Ladan, and Linovitsa of Priluki County and from Kharitonovka, Podol, Radkovka and Malaya Devitsa of other counties of the Chernigov District were murdered in Priluki. About 3,000 Jews were killed during German occupation. We know names only of 430 civilians and 316 militaries…

You can download victims lists here and here (the lists are 95% identical).

Priluki was liberated by the Red Army on September 19, 1943.

After WWII

Many Jewish families return from evacuation in 1944-1945.

In post-war period Jews play important role in economic and culture life of Priluki. For example Rabinovich David Fridelevich headed Cotton Factory for 21 year from 1944 till 1965.

There were about 2,000 Jews in Priluki in 1959.

After the War religious Jew gathered for pray in house of Magit on Gimnazicheskaya Str, 55 and in appartments of Lev Ofman on Kotlyarevskogo Str., 199J. Local police persecute these meetings, especially on big Jewish holidays.

Last shoihet in Priluki was Evelkin who died in 1960’s.

Jewish community was created again in the late 1980s when Leiderman Moses Gdalievich (1928-2000’s) organised “Society of Jewish culture”. Next Chairman was Leonid Klugman who emmigrated to Germany.

In the 1990s most Priluki’s Jews emigrated to Israel, Germany and USA. I can estimate the numer of emmigrated as 1000-2000 perons.

Head of Jewish Priluki Community in 2003-2013 was Lipin Pavel Gershelevich. After his death in 2013 next Head of Community became Beis Irina Yakovlevna.

In June-July 2013 old Jewish Cemetery was vandalized. Up to 20 tombstones were brought down or destroyed. Local police promised to find criminals but haven’t done it…


Priluki Archiv was created in September 1921. During Nazi occupation it wasn’t evacuated and stay in city. Not much documents were lost during WWII. In 1995 there were stored 1451 archival funds with thousands documents.

In January 2004 Priluki State Archiv was united with Chernigov District’s Archiv. All documents were moved to Chernigov. It was a real tragedy for most local historian who lose chance to research Priluki’s history.

Good source information about Priluki outside Ukraine can be a Mormon archivs in USA.

According to my positive experience of research in Chernigov archiv most valuable document about Priluki Jews in Chernigiv Archiv are 1502/1/13 and 14 – it is a list of Priluki Jewish families which was filling between 1889 and 1918 (new families members was adding and person which leave were strike out). If you find your familie here you will be able to get a description of 2-3 generations in one place. List of family heads you can download here. More detail about this uniq document you can read on Miriam Wainer website.

Most recent surnames which I came across (during check of family lists and birth records for few years) are: Karasik, Zolotnickiy, Myasnikov, London, Korhin, Pantelyat, Finkilshteyan, Levin, Kanevskiy, Lomonosov, Oleyner, Bentzionov, Zaslavskiy, Krypnickiy, Krjijanovskiy, Fratkin, Berkov.

Detalized information about available records in different Ukraine Archivs:

My sphere of interest is Myasnikoff family. They appear in Priluki in the middle of XIX century and comes from small hamlet Nezhirov near Malaya Devitsa village. I can assume that they were forced to ressetle in Priluki during one of the antisemitic campain of transfer Jews from rural area to citites. On map by 1863 such hamplet wasn’t mention so it dissapeared after Jew’s deportation. In the end of XIX century in Priluki lived 4 big Myasnikoff family in total number of more than 100 persons. According 1923 census in Priluki lived ~ 50 mersons with Myasnikoff surname which was a result of huge emmigration in USA and different regions of Soviet Union. In Holocaust victims list mentioned only 5 Myasnikoff’s and 2 in list of perished warriors but obviously it isn’t full lists. Now in Priluki lives less than 10 descendants of Myasnikoff family.

Jewish surname Myasnikoff also appears in East Belarus so I can assume that they came from Gomel region in the middle-end of XVIII century. In that time Jews became appear in Chernigov region after Khmelnitskiy massacre and Ukrainian Civil War of second part XVII century.

Famous Jews from Priluki

Mogilevskiy Wolf Leyzerovych (1886-1943) – Ukrainian painter.

Isay Yakovlevich Hurhin (1887, Priluki -1925, New York) – Ukrainian Jewish politican and diplomat.

Boris Evseevich Malkin (1908, Priluki – 1972, Minsk) – Belarusian Soviet theater painter.

Michael Lazarevic Hershanowitsch (1924-2013) – Soviet and Russian oncologist

Alexander Ezer (Yevzerov) (1894, Priluki –1973, Jerusalem ) was a Zionist activist and a leading developer of commerce, tourism and industry in the pre-state Yishuv and newly established State of Israel.

Bezalel London (1900,Priluki -1971), is an Israel actor, known for Spuren (1972), Zot Hi Ha’aretz (1936) and Ha-Etmol Shel Maher (1964). He emmigrated from Soviet Union in 1925.

Mark Sterling (1895, Pryluki – 1976, Paris) was a French painter.

Irving Chernev (1900, Priluk – 1981) was a chess player and prolific Russian-American chess author. He was born in Pryluky and emigrated to the United States in 1920

Yechiel Galperin (1880, Priluki- 1942, Tel Aviv), is a teacher, supporter of the introduction of Hebrew as a main language of children’s pre-school education

William Edlin (1878, Priluki–1947, New York),was born in Priluki ia in 1878 and was brought to the US at the age of 12.He initially resided in California where he attended the University of California and Stanford University. At the age of 22, he edited the Havermill (Mass.) Social Democrat and cooperated with the socialist administration of the city. He then went to New York and became: editor of The Jewish Daily Forward, 1902-1903, editor of the Cap Maker’s Journal, 1902-1905 and drama and music editor of the Jewish Morning Journal, 1904-1913.

In 1915, Mr. Edlin became city editor of The Day newspaper and editor-in-chief of that publication from 1916 to 1925. After four years of independent writing, he returned to The Day newspaper as editor-in-chief. He later became national president of the Workman’s Circle, president of the New York Foreign Film Critics and president of the Yiddish Writers Union. In 1907, Mr. Edlin published, World Famous Operas, in Yiddish. He married Pauline Zlotzovsky in 1912 and they had a daughter, Charmain.
David Aronovich Rozov (1902-1941, Kuibyshev), deputy minister of Trade of the USSR, was arrested in 1940 and executed in 1941.

Meer Abramovich Slavin (1898-1981), hight rank military doctor, Major-General of Medical Service.

Gregory Lvovich Tiraspolskiy (1871-1947), Ph.D. in Tomsk Polytechnic University, emmigrated from Russia in 1920.

Ilya Evseevich Flys (1910-1964, Leningrad), famous soviet chemist.

Jewish education

Before Revolution in Priluki existed 4 private Jewish secondary schools: 2 Levin’s, Hazanov’s and female Frid’s.

Jewish library existed in Priluki till 1920. In Bussines book for 1901 I find mention of these library. It belonged to Beilin Gersh Abramovich..

After the Revolution in Priluki were created 4 Jewish Schools: three 7-years and one 4-year.

Jewish school №5 was created from Russian school in 1923 and named in honor of October Revolution. Junior pupils used Yiddish used as an educationl language first 3 years. Next classes used Russian. School directors in different years were Goldin Lev Abramovich, Zaks (name is unknow) and Novikov Boris Iosipovich.  During first year there were 11 teachers.

Number of the pupils in different yers: 194 in 1923, 229 in 1924, 307 in 1926, 255 in 1927.

Jewish school №5 was transfered to Russian in 1938. Since 1925 school was located in the building on the central city’s squere. It was burned by Germans in 1943.

Jewish school №8 was created on the basis of private gymnasium of Novogrudskiy in 1918. There studied 250 Jewish children in 5 classes. School located in building of Bukler’s theatre on Pereyaslavskaya Str.(destroyed in 1980’s) and existed for cost of pupil’s payments.

Since 1919 Hebrew as a language of education was prohibited in USSR and school became use Russian.

In 1920 school was nationalised. In 1921 there worked 19 teachers. School director was Bashmachnikov Iliya Solomonovich.

Number of the pupils in different yers: 250 in 1918, 280 in 1921, 216 in 1922, 245 in 1923, 266 in 1924.

In 1922 teachers were Demkov S.M., Zaslavskaya B.I., Kiselova M.P., Koiles Y.G., Krasin A.A., Krasina E.V., Mogilevskiy V.L., Preis A.E., Shkoropad O.P., Novikova S.B., Zapadinska G.I.

In 1924 and 1925 school’s directors were Slavina Sarra Iosifovna and Grishko Vasyl Pilipovich.Jewish school №8 was closed in July 24, 1925 due to emergency state of the school’s building.

Jewish labor school was created in 1920 and was located in the building of Kislih’s secondary school (buildins still exist on Vokzalnaya Str., 35). Among 15 teachers were Nahman Gold and Frederika Iosifovna Lyapidys.

Number of the pupils in different yers: 317 in 1920, 224 in 1924.

In 1922 there was created first brunch of “Young Spartacus” in Priluki. In next year they were renamed in Pioneers. Main organisator became Isaak Bruk, head of the first detachment was Krasin (son of history teacher).

In 1923 school was moved to building of former Barskiy hotel on Vokzalnaya Str.(ruined during WWII). It was renamed to Politechnick school named in honor of 1 May.In 1931 school was aasigned to local electrical station where children practice in different specialities. Pupils often helped to workers of Jewish collective farm “Noviy pobut”. Aftre the WWII school wasn’t renovated.

Jewish collective farm “Noviy Pobut”

Jewish collective farm was organised in 1925. First members where 12 poor Jews.

In 1930 collective farm consist of 200 families and 650 members which owned 445 acrs, 58 horses, 177 sheeps, 5 cows and one tractor. Jewish artisans joined this farm too. Due to them were created different workshops – mill, smithy, shoe’s and others.

In 1930’s “Noviy Pobut” was a biggest collective farm in Priluki region. In the beginning of 1930’s member’s get a land in outskirts of Priluki and create a small village “Noviy Pobut” (see map above). There were 20 houses.

In 1960’s last inhabitans were resettled in Priluki and on the place of village was created city cemetery. Collective farm’s office was located in house on the front of Brick factory №2 on Frunze Str.


According to many documents and facts we can concluded that before and after Revolution most of the Priluki Jews lived in the central part of the city between current Kkotlyarevskogo and Ivanovskaya streets.

Panorama of former Priluki jewish quartal with ruin of Choral synagogue and building of Ygolniy Prayer House

Panorama of former Priluki jewish quartal with ruin of Choral synagogue and building of Ygolniy Prayer House

House of tobacco factory owner Zelman N. Fratkin located in Kievskaya Str., 156. Between 1947 and 2000 there was located city library. House of another merchant from this clan located on Kievskaya Str., 265.

Building of the Heyder now is a surgical department of the Municipal Hospital.

Building of Municipal Cultur House was started to build for cost of merchant Brodskiy and owner of brick factory Shtonda but was stopped due to Brodskiy bankruptcy. It was completed only in 1930’s.

Fratkin’s house (owner of tobacco factory) is located in Kievskaya Str., 273. After WWII and till 2003 there was located children’s library.

Modern dental clinic is located in former Topolskiy’s inn by address Kievskaya Str., 162

Dental clinic

Dental clinic

Kogan and Malkin mill was located on the territory of building located on Kievskaya Str., 80.

Building on Vokzalnaya Str., 57 belonged to mill owner Dolgin. Now it is a telecommunication center.

Building of Priluki Сity Council was build by Jewish merchant Zolotarev in the second half of XIX century. Before Revolution it was rented out to Noble Assembly. During WWII building was burned and rebuild in 1943-1951.

Zolotarev's building now and 100 years ago

Zolotarev’s building now and 100 years ago


In this small story of Priluki Jewish community I must mention a owner of soap factory – Frid Berko Failovich. His house still existing on the corner of Pereyaslavskaya and Kievskaya Streets.

In 1895 in Pereyaslavskaya Str., 13 (on the front of the modern Culture House Abraham Moiseevich Bukler constructed building for Intim theatre (300 seats). In different times it was used for theatres, Jewish school (after 1918) and Bread factory (after WWII). Building was destroyed in the second half of XX century.


In Chernigov Archiv store documents about transfer of Synagogues buildings from state property to religious communities which took place in 1922. There is listed all synagogue’s property which was signed by communitie members. Due to this documents we know that in 1922 there were 9 synagogues. In 2000’s Pavel Grigorevich Lipin create a list of 5 existing buildings which used a synagogues in the beginning of XX century. I identified only 3 out of them. Names and another details of synagogues located in 2 other buildings are unknown.

  • Ygolniy Prayer House

A wooden building which was constructed in the 1870’s. The overall space of the structure was 240 square meters. In 1922 there it housed 21 Torah volumes. Among the parishioners in 1920’s there I.Khazan, R. Agranov, Sverdlov, A. Nyhman and others. Now the building is used as a dwelling house. Address: Sadovaya Str., 35.

  • The Kravetskiy Prayer House

A wooden building which was constructed in 1880. In 1923 it housed 57 Torah volumes. Among the parishioners of the 1920’s were G.Samoilovich, Iosel Rivkin, H. Evelkin, M.Katsnelson, Izko Kapitulskiy, Boruh Berkov Krypnitskiy, Zalman Haimov Gurevich, S. Karasik.

According to Bussines Directories by 1899, 1901 next persons headed Kravetskiy Prayer House:
Scholar –  bourgeois Mordyh Udkovich Krypitskiy, Moses Beniamonivich Bukler; treasurer – merchant  Moses Wolfovich Eidelman (lived in private house on Trehsvyatitskaya Str.) Israel Berkovich Zolotnickiy, head – merchant  Abraham Moiseevich Dolgin (lived in private house on Sobornaya Str.), Moses Wolfovich Eidelman

The building was located on Sadovaya Str but the exact location and current state is unknown.

  • Big Choral Synagogue

Synagogue was built in 1861 on the place of more older wooden synagogue or prayer house. The total space of the structure was 2000 square meters. The building became used by members of Jewish workman’s circle. Synagogue was closed down in the 1927 and transformed in Worker’s Club. There were existed small theatre which play in Yiddish. In 1945 it was converted into a cinema. In 1954 building was reconstructed when was destroyed big beautiful synagogue’s dome. The Cinema was closed in 1990. After this, the city began to convert the building into a storage space for materials from the local museum. The roof and the dome of the synagogue were disassembled and the building currently remains in this state.

In 1922 the Choral synagogue housed 57 Torah volumes. Among the parishioners in 1920’s were M.Katz, Boris Soloveichik, Abraham Gurevich, E.I.Sverdlov.

According to Bussines Directories by 1899, 1901 next persons headed Choral Syanagogue:
Scholar –  bourgeois Moses Beniaminovich Bukler (lived in private house on Gimnazicheskaya Str.); treasurer – merchant Israel Berkov Zolotnickiy (lived in private house on Sobornaya Str.), head – merchant Elya Ioselevich Rozenberg (lived in private house on Sobornaya Str.)

From 1908 Bussines Directory:
Scholar –  bourgeois Berkov Izkov Syponitskiy ; treasurer – merchant Zelman Shmyilov Rahlenko, head – merchant  Elya Gdalevich Rozenberg (lived in private house on Sobornaya Str.)

Address: Sadovaya Str., 36 (before 1896 it was Synagogue Str.).

  • Prayer House “Khaya-Odom” on Val 

The building was of Wooden construction (overlaid with brick) and was completed in the year 1885. In 1922 it housed 12 Torah volumes. Among the parishioners in 1920’s were A,.Grinberg, M.Levandovskiy, S.Urovskiy. According to prayer’s house name it was located not far from Big Choral Synagogue in the center of Priluki. It was located on Trehsvyatitelskaya Str. (now it is Gogolya Str). But it’s exact location and current state is unknown.

According to Bussines Directories by 1899, 1901 next persons headed Prayer House “Khaya-Odom”:
Scholar –  bourgeois Aaron Berkovich Rozov (lived in private house on Halahanoskaya Str.); treasurer – bourgeois Ehil Shaevich Sverdlov, head – merchant  Sryl-Ber Leibovich Rivkin

  • Fratkinskiy Prayer House

Building of Fratkinskaya Synagogue in Priluki. Now music school

The Fratkinskiy prayer house was a brick building which was constructed in 1872. Total space is 900 square meters. Because of the name, “Fratkinskiy” we can assume that it was the local bussinesman (add first name) Fratkin, the owner of the tobacco factory which made Pryluky famous, who donated the money for the construction of this synagogue. The Fratkinskiy prayer house currently functions as a music school (from 1966). In 1922 the prayer house housed 35 Torah volumes. Among parishioners in 1920’s were M.Rott, Simha Ginzburg, Merinson.

According to Bussines Directories by 1899, 1901 next persons headed Fratkinskiy prayer house:
Scholar –  merchant Berko Faivishev Frid (lived in private house on Alexandrovskaya Str., now it is Kievskaya Str.), treasurer and head David Notovich Kisin (lived in private house on Pereyaslavskaya Str.),

Address: Zemskaya Str., 11.

  • Vokzalniy Prayer House

Was situated on Pereyaslavskaya Str. In 1922 there were 15 Torah volumes. The exact location and history of the structure is unknown.

  • Kvashinskiy Prayer House

In 1922 it housed 24 Torah volumes. The exact location and history of the structure is unknown.

According to Bussines Directories by 1899, 1901 next persons headed Kvashinskiy Prayer House:
Scholar –  merchant Moses Urievich Kagan (lived in private house on Alexandrovskaya Str., now it is Kievskaya Str.); treasurer – Osher Abramovich Nemkovskiy (lived in private house on Alexandrovskaya Str., now it is Kievskaya Str.), head – Yankel Moiseevich Slonimskiy (lived in private house on Alexandrovskaya Str., now it is Kievskaya Str.), Iosel Gershovich Dvorkin  (lived in private house on Alexandrovskaya Str., now it is Kievskaya Str.)

  • Prayer House “Moishev-Sheiynim”

This synagogue was established in 1906, on the territory of the Rabinovich & Fratkin Tobacco factory on Konotopskaya Str. in a 2-room building. One can be assume that it was built for the workers of the Tabaco plant who were primarily of Jewish decent. Among the parishioners in 1920’s were H.G.Krypnitskiy, Abraham Lifshits, Aleiner.

The exact location and current state of the structure is unknown but as I know most old building of tobacco factory were burned during WWII.

  • Prayer House Habad 

Any details are unknown.

  • Other preyer houses in Priluki district

Pliskunovka ravine

On May 20, 1942 the Jews living in the Priluki ghetto were ordered to assemble at the bridge over the Pliskunovka River, ostensibly to be settled in a new area. Most Jewish men had already been shot to death before that date.

Only old people, women, and children remained. All those who arrived were taken to a ravine near the bridge on the way to the village of Pliskunovka. They were lined up in rows and shot. The number of victims amounted to 1,290, including some Jews from neighboring villages who were shot together with about 1,150 Jews from Priluki itself. The killings were carried out by a detachment of Sonderkommando Plath of the SD under the command of the head of the Kremenchug security police, Karl Julius Plath. The German field gendarmerie, local Ukrainian police, and a Cossack unit participated in the mass killing of Jews. The adults who had to take off their clothes, were beaten and then shot. The children were shot or buried alive.

Grave was fenced off and flowers were planted in June 1944 by Jews who returned from evacuation and Red Army. In 1948 all graves in ravine were united in one.  In 1967 local Holocaust survivors Leonid Briskin and Vladimir Entin placed (without official permission) a cast-iron tombstone in the Pliskunovka ravine, at the mass murder site of local Jews. It had an ethnically neutral inscription in Russian that said: “Here lie buried victims of fascism who were shot by Hitler’s soldiers during the occupation of Priluki in the years 1941-1943. May their memories be preserved for eternity.” Later, the policy of the authorities changed and a marble tombstone with an inscription identical to the earlier one was erected by officials replaced the previous one.

In addition to the original monument in 2005 a marble gravestone was placed at the mass murder site of the Jews from Priluki and Priluki County on the bottom of the Pliskunovka Ravine onthe eastern outskirts of the town. The inscription in Ukrainian and Hebrew on the stone reads: “In this place on May 20, 1942 1,290 Jews were executed by the fascist invaders during the occupation.”


About 1,500 Jews were murdered at the racetrack in Priluki, close to the local prison, together with non-Jewish locals, at different time between 1941 and 1943. Jews were systematically arrested by Germans in small groups, imprisoned in the Priluki prison, and then shot at the racetrack. In the winter of 1942 a group of 100 Jewish men from the ghetto.

Monument to civil people killed near Priluki prison during the WWII

The murder was apparently carried out between October 1941 and February 1942 by the German Secret Field Police unit no. 730 and from February 1942 — by theSecret Field Police unit no. 721. Before being shot the Jews were forced to take off their clothes. Some of them, including many children, were buried alive. Many Jews from Priluki County were murdered at the racetrack in Priluki: documents report the killing of Jews from Ladan (at least 15 Jews were shot on May 20, 1941), Linovitsa (at least 6 Jews were shot on March 1, 1943), and Polova (at least 2 Jews were shot on March 1, 1943). Some Jews from the Chernigov District were also murdered at the racetrack: documents report the killing of Jews from Radkovka in Malaya Devitsa County (at least 3 Jews, who were arrested in 1943 and sent to the Priluki prison) and Malaya Devitsa (at least 1 Jew, who was arrested on February 25, 1943 and sent to the Priluki prison).

Monument was erected in May 7, 1978 (architect V.G. Shtolko and sculptor V.P. Lutsak).

Ghetto during WWII

Ghetto was established for jewish people in the autumn 1941 in the building of school No.4 and street near it. All jews from ghetto was killed 20 May 1942 in Pliskunovka ravine.

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History of Priluki ghetto described in book of Vladimir Entin (ed.), Iosif Zeev ben Dov from Priluki (Jerusalem, 2006). There are only 2-3 paper copys of this book in Ukraine but you can download it here.

Old Jewish cemetery

According to the historical numbers of Jewish population we can suppose that Jewish cemetery appeared in Priluki in the beginning of XIX century. It wasn’t marked on city plan by 1802, 1805 and appeared only on the 1859’s plan. Also it was mentioned on plans by 1863 and 1888. It was located on the western outskirt near the road to Rudivka village (see map above), between road to Nezhin and Udai river. First Pruluki Jewish cemetery was closed in the end of XIX century. I haven’t find information about exact years when it was demolished. But Sheptovitskiy Lev Mihailovich (1921-2000’s) said that he remember this oldest cemetery on the bank of Udai river. So we can assume that it existed till WWII.

The cemetery is located on the former outskirts of the town of Kvashyntsi in Partyzans’ka Street, near the bus stop marked «Hospital». Cemetery was founded in 1859. Estimated number of graves is 2600. The cemetery is partly fenced, trees have been planted around the perimeter but open to all. Jews from towns Linivitsa, Ladan (10 km away) , Gusynya and  Malaya Divits (10 km away) used this cemetery too. Cemetery was established in 1905.  Place of more old cemetery is unknown but it was exist. Last graves are dated by 1970-1980. Cemetery consist of 2 parts: more old and new. Graves of new part is belong to period 1930-1980 and jewish community try keep in order it. But old part totally covered by vegetation and tombstones can be seen only at winter and spring. I made many photos of old part of cemetery at early spring of 2011 but cant put them all in this article, so if you need them I can send them to you directly. According to testimony of Vladimir Entin Jews who died on Priluki ghetto were burried on this cemetery. Location of graves is unknown.

On the cemetery burried many members of famous families Krupytsky, Rabinovich, Krasnopolskyi, Zorahovychiv, Zolotarev and  Bukler, Fratkinyh and Dolgin.

After 1974  jews used common cemeteries and jewish part of Noviy Pobut cemetery. In 2010 Jews were allowed to used this cemetery again but no new burilas appeared here.

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  1. Vitaly is to be congratulated upon his generation of the events and history of Priluki. The information is most valuable and I will ask his permission to attach this information to my website. Of course, attribution to Vitaly will be attached to him for this excellent work.

  2. Thanks so much for this great page. I have been looking for information about my Priluki ancestors (the Belikoff family) and this brings so much to life. I hope to someday be able to visit and see what information I can collect.

    • Hope you will be able to visit Priluki :)

      • I hope to visit Priluki some day!

  3. Here you can find Vladimir Entin book about Priluki ghetto:

  4. Thank you for this information.
    My father was Morris Belikoff who emigrated to the United States in the early 1900s. i may be related to Michael Krieger through one of my father’s sisters, perhaps Ida. Thank you again for your excellent work.

  5. List of the Priluki Jewish families heads (1891-1918):

  6. I have been looking for information on my father Anatoly and his sister Elena Levinskaya from Priluki. Maybe someone can help me find her.

    • Do you have more details? Before Revolution?

  7. My grandfather, Herbert Marsh (Hyman Masnikoff) was from Priluki. thank you for sharing this informative and emotionally powerful information.

  8. Comment from HannaK (Kiryat Anavim archive)
    “Very nice website! Keep up the good work!
    About the pioneers from Preluki who had built Kibbutz Kiryat Anavim read here (Hebrew)

  9. Thank you for this page. I lived in Priluki from 2004-2006. I can’t find the village of “Pliskunovka” on google maps. do you know the location/coordinates Pliskunovka Yar?

  10. Exact location was marked on the map in the beginning of article

  11. Hi Vitaliy, I am a Myasnikov (Masnikoff) descendant. My great grandfather immigrated in 1908. I have several Masnikoff family trees, but no way to connect them, do you think you could help?

    • Hi Rebecca,
      I will send you detail infprmation by e-mail, it will be too much for one comment. Glad to find anothe descendant!

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