Brailiv Old Jewish Cemetery

Cemetery Information

Country
Ukraine
Region
Vinnytsia
District
Zhmerynskyi
Settlement
Brailiv
Site address
Starting on 4 Tsentralnaya Street (former Oktyabrskoy revolutsiyi), proceed north for 900 metres then turn left onto the dirt road. After this, proceed a further 80 metres, turn right, and continue for 50 metres. The cemetery can be found to the left of the road.
GPS coordinates
49.1259, 28.17324
Perimeter length
774 мetres
Is the cemetery demolished
no
Type and height of existing fence
No fence
Preservation condition
Unfenced Jewish cemetery
General site condition
The cemetery has been partially demolished. The majority of the cemetery was demolished to allow for the field to be expanded. There are legible inscriptions on tombstones from 1920.
Number of existing gravestones
Approximately 20.
Date of oldest tombstone
1920 (the only legible tombstone).
Date of newest tombstone
N/A
Urgency of erecting a fence
High
Land ownership
State
Preserved construction on site
No
Drone surveys
Yes

Historical overview

According to Commission on the Preservation of Jewish Heritage, the cemetery was established in the 18th century. It can be found marked on a Russian map of the region from the 1900s.

There are indications that Brailov was founded in 1574. Jews are believed to have settled there in the 17th century. In 1765, the Jewish community numbered 190 households and 638 members. In 1793, after the Second partition of Poland, Brailov came under control of the Russian Empire, and became part of the Podolia Governorate (Podolskaya Gubernia). Jews of Brailov numbered 2071 in 1847, and 3721 in 1897, which was 43% of the total population. In 1852, all 78 artisans in the town were Jews, and in the 1880s, Jews owned industrial enterprises such as a sugar refinery, brewery, flour mills, and tanneries, employing many Jewish workers. In the early 20th century, the town had three synagogues, a talmud torah with 50 students, and two private Jewish schools: a school for boys, and one for girls. On the eve of WWI Jews owned all 19 grocery stores, all 16 textile shops, and the only pharmacy in the town. In 1918–19, during the civil war, 26 Jews were massacred and around 100 Jewish women were raped in pogroms. In 1922, Brailov became part of the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic within the USSR. In 1926, the Jewish population numbered 2393.
Brailov was occupied by the Germans on July 17, 1941, and immediately 15 Jews were shot. A ghetto was established and a heavy tax was imposed on the population. On February 13, 1942, 1500 Jews were assembled; the sick and those discovered in hiding were shot on the spot. Around 300 artisans were sent back to the ghetto, joined by 200 still in hiding, and the remaining 1200 Jews were executed. On April 18, 180 Jews, mostly children and elderly persons, were murdered. The last group of 503 was executed on August 25, 1942.
The Old Jewish cemetery of Brailov, was likely established in the 18th century, and is located at the North-Eastern outskirts of the town, north of the New cemetery, between the fields. There can be seen only a few dozen matzevot, which date back to the 20th century pre-WW2.

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