Bilylivka Jewish Cemetery

Cemetery Information

Country
Ukraine
Region
Zhytomyr
District
Ruzhyn
Settlement
Bilylivka
Site address
The cemetery is located east of No.10 Shevchenka street.
GPS coordinates
49.68496, 29.01704
Perimeter length
294 metres
Is the cemetery demolished
no
Type and height of existing fence
There is no fence.
Preservation condition
Unfenced Jewish cemetery
General site condition
The cemetery is well-maintained. The grass on the site is mowed up. Locals say that some of the gravestones had been taken and used for the construction of private houses in the 1950s.
Number of existing gravestones
There are around 150 gravestones.
Date of oldest tombstone
1897 (the earliest tombstone found by ESJF).
Date of newest tombstone
1934 (the latest tombstone found by ESJF).
Urgency of erecting a fence
High
Land ownership
Municipality
Preserved construction on site
No
Drone surveys
Yes

Historical overview

The exact period of the cemetery’s establishment is unknown. Given the oldest preserved tombstone dates to the late 19th century, it can be gathered the cemetery was founded in that era. It cannot be found marked on old maps of the region.

Jews in Bilylivka (Ukr. Білилівка, Rus. Белиловка, Yid. בעלילעווקע) were first mentioned in 1719. The Jewish population rose from 124 in 1765, to 1,008 in 1847, and had reached 2,223 (46% of the town) by 1897. The community maintained a synagogue and two prayer houses as well as a loan fund. The Jews survived several pogroms during the Civil War of 1918–21. In the interwar period, the Jewish population fell to 633 (11%) in 1939. The Germans arrived in July 1941, and all remaining Jews were murdered by September 1941.
The exact date of the cemetery’s establishment is unknown, however the earliest tombstone dates back to 1897. According to local residents, some of the stones were used for construction in the 1950s.