Bar Old Jewish Cemetery
The exact period of the cemetery’s establishment is unknown. According to IAJGS, the cemetery was demolished in 1978, after which it was built over with residential buildings. It was founded in the 17th century. David Maisel from Bar was buried there.
The city of Bar is first mentioned in 1401 as a small trade at the Eastern outskirts of the Polish lands, named Rov, and was renamed in 1537, when the Polish Queen Bona Sforza (born in Italy) named it after her Italian hometown, Bari.
Between 1672 and 1686, control of Bar was passed between the Ottoman Empire and Poland, eventually settling under nominal Ottoman control until 1699. In 1793, after the Second partition of Poland, it fell under the control of the Russian Empire, and became part of the Podolia Governorate (Podolskaya Gubernia). After 1922, Bar became part of the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic within the USSR, and in 1991, following the fall of the Soviet Union, the town became part of the independent Ukraine.
Its town rights were enshrined under Magdeburg law in 1540, and in 1542 the first Jewish settlers are mentioned, which makes the Jewish community of Bar one of the oldest in the Ukraine. Under an agreement concluded in 1556 with the citizens of Bar, the Jews were permitted to own buildings and had the same rights and duties as the other residents; they were permitted to visit other towns in the district for business purposes but were forbidden to provide lodging for Jewish visitors in the city. The community grew during the second half of the 16th and into the 17th century, with the Jews of Bar engaged in trade in places as far away as Moldavia. The Jewish community of Bar did however suffer from pogroms during this time. A massacre of the Jews of bar occurred in 1648, during the Khmelnitsky uprising, and again in 1651, by Cossacks and Tatars. In 1717, a synagogue was erected in Bar. After 1793, under Russian rule, the community flourished. The Jewish population grew from 4442 in 1847 to 5773 in 1897 (58% of the total population), and to 10,450 (46%) in 1910. Between 1910 and World War I, Jews opened factories in a wide range of industries including: agricultural products, sugar, linen, tobacco, and vodka. They owned the majority of the shops in town, the only pharmacy and were the majority of artisans. Twenty Jews in Bar lost their lives during a pogrom in the summer of 1919. Religious and communal life came to an end with the establishment of the Soviet government. The Jewish population had fallen to 5270 (55%) in 1926 and 3869 (41%) in 1939.
The Germans occupied Bar on July 16, 1941. In December two ghettos were created. The majority of the Jews were murdered or died there. Bar was liberated on March 25th, 1944. In the 1990s the Jewish community in Bar consisted of only a few dozen people.
The old Jewish cemetery of Bar was totally demolished and built over during the Soviet period.