Talne railway station in 1919

Talne railway station in 1919

Talna, Tolne, טאלנא (Yiddish), Talne (Polish), Talne – Тальне – Tal’ne (Ukrainian), Talnoe, Talnoya (Alternative Name), Tal’noye, Talnoe – Тальное (Russian)

Talne is a city in Cherkasy Oblast (province) of Ukraine.

The Jews of Talne were mentioned for the first time in connection with Cossack pogroms when the local Jewish community was destroyed in 1768. In 1848, according to the census, the Jewish community of Talne consisted of 1,807 people, while in 1897, the Jewish population increased to 5,452 people (57%). In 1854, Rabbi David Tversky (1808—1882) arrived in the town, and the place became a centre for Hasidim.

In 1910, a Talmud Torah existed in Talne, as well as a private Jewish college for men, a synagogue and four other prayer houses. The Talmud Torah was opened in 1889, and 59 people studied there at the expense of the community. In 1912 – the number of pupils had reached about 100. In 1912, the population of Talne included 3,810 Orthodox Christians, 40 Catholics and around 10,000 Jews.

The local Jewish population suffered heavily in the years 1919-20 from pogroms by many peasant gangs, as well as the White Army soldiers, who pillaged and burned most of the town in the summer of 1919.
The announcement of Ukrainian national forces regarding the forthcoming pogrom in 1919 read: “… All Russian peasants should display icons in their windows so that the Cossacks do not attack the villagers… Everything must be finished in half an hour”.

Wooden synagogue in Talne

6 Photos

Photographer Rabinovich. Talne. beginning of XX century.

Photographer Rabinovich. Talne. beginning of XX century.

The pogrom of May 13, 1919 was organized by local residents with 15 people killed and about 50 injured.
In early September, the Soviet troops were driven out by Tiutiunnyk’s gang who organised the killing of 53 people.
The biggest massacre took place on September 19, 1919, under Denikin’s rule with houses looted and the burning of a part of the town.
In early October 1920 Budenny’s troops defeated a Jewish self-defense, robbing and murdering many of the Jewish population .

In Spring 1922 jews organized a self defence detachment. In 1922 mainly the poorest Ukrainians and Jews founded a guild known as the “Beehive and a Bee”.

At JDC website I find this rather interesting report about a state of Talnoe Jewish Community in 1923:

In former days Talnoe was one of the most prosperous little towns in the Ukraine. It is situated in a district where the corn trade was at its height and having as its resident the famous “Talnoe Rabbi”, Jews from the entire district used to flock here, and brought with them welfare and prosperity into the town.

That used to be. Times have changed now. Talnoe, as well as the rest of the town in this district has suffered from a number of pogroms. Prosperity has gone long ago, so has the famous Rabbi and so have also all those that could afford to leave the town and find refuge in larger centres, more or less safe from pogroms and under better economic conditions. Only the very poor had to stay behind trying to make the best of it.

The general population consists of 14,000 among which are 8,000 Jews, including 500 refugee families.

The only institutions now in Talnoe are:
1. Ukrainian Children home
2. Home for Aged with 35 inmates.

A few versts out from Talnoe there is also an hospital with 50 beds. This hospital belongs to the sugar factory out there.
The Jewish children home burned down recently, the children of which have been quartered in private homes. The J. D. C has allocated $110 (5000 roubles) for repairs of the children home.

1. It is necessary to open a Home for 100 children.
2. $100 is needed for repairs of the public school premises.
3. It is important to open a dispensary which should also be provided with medicines. Dr. Belinkis who is a skilful doctor and prominent social worker, a resident for 40 years in Talnoe would be of great use in organizing this dispensary.
4. Bed-linen, clothing, footwear and food is needed for the Home for Aged.
5. The Bath-House must be repaired for which $200 is needed.

Some individual relief must be distributed among the neediest of the population.


$200 sent by the New York Landsmanschaft on Feb. 23, 1923, was distributed on April 9th, 1923, by our inspector in accordance with the wishes of the Landsmanschaft.

This is how the money was distributed:
1. For the repair of the children home, recently destroyed by fire – Rs. 2500 ($56). (For this the JDC added out of its own funds Rs. 5,000).
2. For repairs of the premises of the Jewish Public school – Rs. 2000 (about $45)
3. For the Home for Aged – Rs. 1500 (about $33).

The balance – the sum of Rs.3000, (about $66) was distributed among the neediest of the Jewish population.

At that time arrangements were also made for the distribution of 25 Food Remittance Packages sent by the New York Landsmanschaft, and 7 Food Remittance Packages sent by the Argentine Landsmanschaft.

The J. D. C. has added 25 Food Remittance Packages for distribution out of its own Bulk Sale. Thus the miserable condition of those in dire need has somewhat been relieved; also the institutions have received some relief. But that is yet quite insufficient.

Jewish Komsomol devision in 1933. Talne

Jewish Komsomol devision in 1933. Talne

This photo was made in Talne in 1933. All these people are members of Jewish Komsomol devision. Photo was provided by wife of Shika Pogrebinskiy – Pogrebinskaya Sura Iosipovna before her death.
People in the first row (standing) from left to right: 1,2 – unknown; 3 – Pozharskiy; 4 – unknown woman; 5 – Shika Pogrebinskiy (?-1993)
People in th second row (sitting): 1 – Volinets; 2 – M. Pogrebinskiy; 3 – unknown woman; 4 – teacher Gorodetskiy; 5 – Baziyan; 6 – R. Pozharskiy; 7 – B. Hrapko
People in a third row (sitting): 1 – unknown; 2 – Kagan M.
People in 4th row (sitting): 1 – Kagan M.; 2 – unknown woman; 3 – Mezhiritskaya

In the 1920-30s. the number of Jews in Talne, like in other towns of Ukraine, decreased due to famine, repression and migration.
According to the 1926 census, 4,169 Jews lived in Talne (39% of the population).

Komsomol group in Jewish School №4. Photo by 1939

Komsomol group in Jewish School №4. Photo by 1939

This photo provided by Kerpelman Grigoriy.
First row (standing from left to right): Naum Bilinkis, Kerpelman Grigoriy, Munya Shvartsman.
Middle row: Liza Soloduha, Buzya (surname is unknown), Martur – pioneer leader, Kogan <unknown name Nusevna> – Yiddish teacher, Yakov Bilinkis – head of school, Esya Finkel, Nesya Havulya, Sonya (surname is unknown)
Lowest row: Lisogor, Israel Chepurnoi – son of math teacher, Sonya.


Jewish guys at Talne foodball field. Most of them were killed during WWII. Photo by 1940.

Jewish guys at Talne foodball field. Most of them were killed during WWII. Photo by 1940.

First row (standing, from left to right): Solomon Safran, Gorbokon, Leva Sherstyaniy

Second row: Leva Pribluda, Leva Fonfat, Naum Feldman, Milya Gendler

Before the war, 1,866 Jews were recorded as living in Talne (15%).

Only small number of Jews evacuated in the first weeks of war. Germans tanks attack railway station and killed many civil people who were waiting for evacuation. Nuber of Jews among them is unknown but was a signifacant.  On August 16, 1941, the local commandant ordered the registration of all Jews who were gathered in the square and told they would be sent in several parties to Uman.They were killed in the village of Bilashky (more than 2000).

Reburial of Holocaust victims in Talne

3 Photos

On April 17, 1942, a second death action took place. Around 115 residents were killed. Many Jews who tried to evacuate from Western regions of USSR delayed in Talne and was killed together with local Jews.

After Talne liberation small number of Jews returned to Talne. After the WWII there was only one doctor in Talne region and she was a Jewish woman Titler Mariam.

Remains of second “action” victims were reburied in 1952-1953.

Last minyan was gavered in private house in Talne at 1960′s. Most Jews emmigrate from Talne to different cityes of former USSR in 1970′s. In 2013 there live only 20 Jews, most of them are pensioners. Head of Jewish Community – Titler Valentina Romanovna. I have his contacts and can provide if you need it.

Monument in Brooklyn Holocaust Memorial Mall

4 Photos

Due to efforts of Naum Feldman (who was borned in Talne, and now living in USA) in Brooklyn Holocaust Memorial Mall was opened a Monument in the honor of 500o jews which were killed in Talne. He gavered more than 100 jews from Talne and their descands for opening ceremony.




They lived in Talne:

Duvidl Tversky

Duvidl Tversky

Rabbi Duvidl Tversky (1808-1882) – a chassidic rebbe and renowned Talmudic scholar, one of the eight sons of Rabbi Mordechai Tversky, the grandson of Rabbi Nohum Tversky (Magid of Chernobyl). R. Duvidl lived in Talne from 1854. His grave in the Jewish cemetery has become a place of pilgrimage for Bratslav Hasidim. Rabbi Duvidl lived in luxury and wealth and is said to have sat on a silver throne with a quotation from the Talmud inscribed in gold: “David, king of Israel, lives forever”. Rabbi David loved singing and music, and surrounded himself with cantors and klezmer singers. His personal cantor was Rabbi Joseph of Talne. After the death of R. Duvidl in 1882, the Hasidic court was headed by Rabbi Nohum Tversky. He died young and was succeeded by his son, Rabbi Yitzhak Tversky (1930-1997).


Mikhail Saulovich Elman (1891– 1967). Famous violinist, born in Talne

Mikhail Saulovich Elman (1891– 1967). Famous violinist, born in Talne

Josef from Talne (Josef Volynets) – the personal cantor of Talner Rebbe, author of Hasidic melodies, composer and performer,
Misha Elfman – a famous musician, violinist. Born on January 20, 1891 in T,, in 1923 he moved to New York, where he died on April 5, 1967.
Petr Efimovich Vesklyarov (real name Vekslyarov, alias Grandfather Panas) – born on the 28th of May 1911 in Talne, died Jan. 5, 1994. in Kyiv) – an actor, TV presenter.
Isaac Shaevich Dvuhbabny – the Hero of the Soviet Union. Born on April 2, 1922 in T. Died on May 17, 1944. He was buried in the village of Geroevskoe near Kerch.


Old Jewish Cemetery

Talne jewish cemetery

8 Photos

Situated in city centre, behind the school building. Ohel of Rabbi Duvidl Tversky (1808-1882) situated there. The cemetery borders on private gardens. Date Of The Oldest Known Gravestone is 1825.

Inscription on the most recent gravestone: פ”נ
אשה חשובה
הכשרה והצנועה
מ’ טובה אשת
ר’ פסח צאמין
שנפטרה כ”ו
שבט שנת תרנ”ז
Here buried
Is a respected woman,
Decent and humble,
Tova, the wife of
Rabbi Pesach Tzomin,
Who died on Shvat 26
May her soul be bound in the bond of life

Tombstones laying on the riverbank where the Soviet authorities had bulldozed all of the tombstones from the old Jewish cemetery.  They needed to bulldozed the stones off to make room to build a school which now stands over the old graves.  The tombstones lie on a nearby river bank – just scattered around – wherever they fell.

New Jewish Cemetery

New Jewish Cemetery in Talne. Photo by Lo-Tishkah

New Jewish Cemetery in Talne. Photo by Lo-Tishkah

Located 3km from the city of Talne, along the Talne-Cherkasy road. The old part of the cemetery contains up to seven tombstones, the earliest burial refers to 1928. This part is utilized as a grazing ground. On the new part of the cemetery there are approximately 50 graves, as well as the mass grave of Jews murdered on August 19, 1941 at the city slaughterhouse, and reburied in the cemetery in 1952-53.

According to the Head of Jewish Community Titler Valentina Romaniva on this cemetery will иу buried only last 3 Halakha jews of Talne…

Inscription on the oldest found gravestone.
שמחה בר
גאבערביק נפ
יט טבת תרפח
Here buried
Is Simcha, son of
Eliyahu Habervik,
Who died
On Tevet 19, 5688


Mass grave

Bilashki mass grave

5 Photos

The mass grave is located 3-4 km from Talne along the Talne-Uman road, in a field not far from the road (on the left side).  There is a granite obelisk with an inscription in Russian. The obelisk was erected in August 1972. It isn’t mention that most of killed person were jews.

Titler Valentina provided few historic photos – 4 survived Jews in 1981 and photo near monument at 1970′s.




Synagogue in Talne

Synagogue in Talne

In Internet i find only one photo of synagogue in Talne (on Yad Vashem website). Now It is District Metodical Cabinet.

School number 3 is a former Rabbi home.

Eshiva buiding still existing now.















21 Responses

  1. Bob Richer 05.02.2013 at 15:57 #

    I have been searching for information for one of my great grandmothers – Rachel Sturman – who was born in Talne in 1869. Request that anyone with information pertaining to this period of time in Talne to contact me.
    Thank you. Bob

    • Rachel 11.02.2013 at 21:05 #

      Bob–My family lived in Talne at that time. The Polevoys had a general store. Boutelkoff was a Talmudic scholar (probably studied with Twersky and born approximately the same time as Rachel).

      My great-great grandmother’s maiden name was probably Gorodetsky. She was first Tuba Grossman and then Tuba Boutelkoff.

      It’s possible that the Polevoy from Rachel’s generation was named Isaac–he would have been the proprietor of the general store.

      His children were Samuel, Dora, Francis, Moishe–there was at least one more daughter, but we never met her.

      Look forward to hearing from you. There is also a Podolsky in our family, but I do not think he was from Talne.


      Rachel Grossman

      • Jordan Polevoy 26.02.2013 at 16:31 #

        I just read your post Rachel, I am a decendant of the Polevoy family from Tolna and would love all the information you have on our family.

        Jordan Polevoy

  2. Jordan Polevoy 26.02.2013 at 16:37 #

    Goldie Polevoy is the other Daughter of Issac Polevoy as per my family records

  3. Guy Serbin 13.05.2013 at 17:09 #

    My family emigrated to the USA from Talne. In addition to Serbins I am also aware of another family name, something like Bezh-Broz or a variant thereof. Are there any records of the Jewish residents there?

    • vibu_admin 14.05.2013 at 22:24 #

      Head of Jewish Community can’t remember people with such name.
      Naum Fridman is living in Brooklyn, he was born in Talne before WWII and, I hope, can remember pre-war families . I can provide his address in private massage. I hope he is still alive and can help you. One another way is try to search in Archives.

      In Kiev Archiv exist records which are mentioned in article above. I don’t have digital copy of these records.

      I find that in this book http://mnib.malorus.org/kniga/411/ one person Serbin G.M. testified on the pogrom in Talne (September 1919). May be he is your relative…

  4. Robert 03.09.2013 at 06:16 #

    I recently discovered that my grandfather, David Bayless, was from Talne. His name was Beiliss, but the immigration officials changed it to Bayless. He was born in Talne in 1898 and came to the US in 1913. He was a relative of Mendel Beilis, whose story is the basis for Bernard Malamud’s novel, The Fixer. Does anyone know anything about the Beiliss family in Talne?

  5. Rob 28.10.2013 at 01:34 #


    I am a decendent of the Gochman/Hochman clans who emigrated to the US from Talne around 1900. Does anyone have any memory of our name?

  6. Bob Shaw 08.11.2013 at 11:55 #

    My grandmother came from Talne. Her name was Bessie Skwirski. Any info related to her or any of the Skwirski’s would be most welcome

    • Rachel 08.11.2013 at 22:41 #

      Do you know if your grandmother’s family were merchants in Talne. I think there are old business directories available and you might be able to find your family there.

      • rachel 14.11.2013 at 21:49 #

        There is a boutelkoff in my family.

        • Guy Serbin 15.11.2013 at 08:50 #

          I was wondering, would anyone be interested in using DNA tests to see who among us may be related? Also, to what part of the USA did your families emigrate? Ours moved out to southwestern PA, mainly to Indiana, PA and the Pittsburgh areas.

  7. Carolyn Gil 14.11.2013 at 19:16 #

    Rachel, My great grandparents (Hershel and Rachel Butowetsky ?) and their 3 daughters emigrated from Talne in tn 1902. I believe my great grandfather’s family had a flour mill in Talne.
    Do you have more information on the availability of the old business directories?

  8. Mike Potegal 25.11.2013 at 05:19 #

    My paternal grandparents came from Talne-emigrated around 1910. I believe the familiy name was Portugillo(?), Americanized to Potegal by the immigration clerk. When i was a kid 60 yrs ago, we would visit Tanta Molly & Uncle Chiel(?)-i believe they were of the Gochman clan. Any info about my grandparents would be appreciated

    • Guy Serbin 25.11.2013 at 21:34 #

      Mike, I wonder if Portugillo was derived from Portugal. There were claims in my family that we were of Sephardi (Spanish or Portuguese) ancestry, so it would be interesting to know if others has migrated to Talne after the inquisition.

  9. Mike Potegal 26.11.2013 at 02:43 #

    Yes, i was told that Portugillo meant “from Portugal” in Russian(?) – if true, there is 700 yrs of history wrapped up in the name

    • Guy Serbin 01.01.2014 at 21:42 #

      Mike, judging by what I read online, you and your family members are likely eligible for Portuguese citizenship- you would just need to prove the Potegal-Portugillo connection.

  10. Dennis Breiter 10.03.2014 at 19:08 #

    Mike, Guy and all, My maternal grandfather’s name was Meyer Portugalo and we think he also came from Talne.
    Perhaps we could look further into it. I have already done DNA sequencing with the company 23andMe so that may be another interesting possibility to pursue… My email is DennisBreiter@gmail.com

    • Douglas Krell 10.03.2014 at 22:14 #

      Dennis, I’m related to Guy Serbin through my father’s mother. Our family, ‘the Serbins” were from Talne perhaps, but the evidence that I’ve seen is less than convincing. In any case, I’ve done the 23 and me test. I’ll request that we compare our DNA for fun.

  11. Lisa Marshall 12.03.2014 at 18:49 #

    Mike Potegal, I guess we are cousins. Molly and Edward Gochman were my great-grandparents on my Dad’s mother’s side. My grandmother was Vivian (Rose) Gochman. I found this site because my daughter wanted more information about her family to share in her AP world history class.

  12. Guy Serbin 13.03.2014 at 09:30 #

    Douglas, our family was indeed from there. Great-Great-Bubbe Sosol Serbin Z.L.’s immigration record says that she came from there. We apparently lived next door to the Elmans, and she would often hear Mischa Elman practicing his violin.

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