Bus’k Jewish Cemetery

Cemetery Information

Site address
Bus'k Jewish Cemetery
GPS coordinates
49.96633, 24.62720
Perimeter length
618 metres
Is the cemetery demolished
Type and height of existing fence
No fence
Preservation condition
Fenced and protected Jewish cemetery
General site condition
Fenced and protected Jewish cemetery
Number of existing gravestones
250. The earliest Jewish gravestone found in Ukraine is located in this cemetery.
Date of oldest tombstone
Date of newest tombstone
Urgency of erecting a fence
Land ownership
Property of local community
Preserved construction on site
Drone surveys

Historical overview

Bus’k Jewish cemetery is one of the oldest Jewish cemeteries in Ukraine. The oldest preserved Jewish tombstone of the mainland Ukraine, dated to 1520, is located on this cemetery, as well as around ten 16th century tombstones. The cemetery was operating until WWII. The first mention of the Jewish community in Bus’k dates back to 1454. During the Khmelnytskyi massacre, 100 local Jews were murdered. From 1860s, the main spheres Jews were engaged in were related to commerce and renting. Belz and Olesko Hasidic trends were present in the Bus’k Jewish community. During the early 20th century, two governmental elementary schools for boys and girls were operating. In this time, many Jews emigrated to the USA. The Jewish population numbered 2,340 (35% of the total population). The outflow of the Jewish population continued during WWI, when Russian troops invaded the area. A Hebrew school was established in 1921. In 1931, the Jewish population was reduced to 1,600 individuals. During the interwar period, Zionist organisations were politically active. The Nazis occupied Bus’k on July 1, 1941. On September 21, 1942, on Yom Kippur, around 700 Jews were executed. In the same year, a labour camp was created. On December 1, 1942, a ghetto for 1,760 Jews from the surrounding villages was set up. In late May 1943, both the camp and the ghetto were liquidated. In 2004, a monument was erected in the place of the mass shooting in the Jewish cemetery.

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