Shums’k Old Jewish Cemetery

Cemetery Information

Country
Ukraine
Region
Ternopyl
District
Shums'k
Settlement
Shums'k
Site address
Shums'k Old Jewish Cemetery
GPS coordinates
50.12390, 26.11568
Perimeter length
202 metres
Is the cemetery demolished
yes
Type and height of existing fence
No fence
Preservation condition
Demolished and overbuilt Jewish cemetery
General site condition
Demolished and overbuilt Jewish cemetery. The cemetery is overbuilt. There are housing and utility service buildings and private houses on the site. The part of the cemetery site is used for private gardening.
Number of existing gravestones
No tombstones preserved
Date of oldest tombstone
Date of newest tombstone
Urgency of erecting a fence
Fence is not needed
Land ownership
Property of local community
Preserved construction on site
Drone surveys
Yes

Historical overview

The exact period of the cemetery’s establishment is unknown. First, it appears on Russian topographic maps of the 1880s. The New Jewish cemetery was already operating in 1865, so it can be presumed that the Old cemetery was closed before that date. In this case most probably it emerged in mid or late 18th century, when the community of Shums’k developed its institutions. The cemetery was demolished in 1959.

The first Jews settled in Shums’k in the first half of the 18th century. In 1745, local Jews built a beit-midrash, bath, and stores for lease. The Great Synagogue of Shums’k was constructed in 1781. The Jews of Shumsk were mostly engaged in the grain trade and tailoring. In 1897, the Jewish population stood at 1,962 (86,8% of the total population). Five synagogues existed in the town at the end of the 19th century. The majority of the local Jews were the followers of the Olyka and Trisk Hasidism. The Hebrew school of the Beitar network was opened after the Revolution of 1917. The number of Jewish residents of Shumsk declined to 1,717 (73,2% of the total population) by 1921. The Zionist organizations such as “Ha-Halutz”, “Beitar” and “Revisionitim” were active in the interwar period. On July 10, 1941, the Wehrmacht troops occupied the town, and Ukrainians started a pogrom. In March 1942, a ghetto was established. On August 18, 1942, 1,792 Jews were executed. In September 1942, the last Jews in the ghetto were murdered. Only 15 Jews of Shumsk survived the war.

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