ESJF 2019/20 surveys in five European countries

Dobre Municipal Cemetery - Jewish Section

Drone survey:

Perimeter map:

Site Address:
The cemetery is located near the house 105, Shumska Street. At the western end of Shumska Street, turn left and proceed for 100 metres. The municipal cemetery is located on the right of the road. The Jewish section is located at the north-eastern part of the cemetery.
GPS coordinates:
47.31207, 32.44021
Perimeter length:
87 metres
Is the cemetery demolished:
Type and height of existing fence:
The whole cemetery is fenced with a metal mesh fence 1.5 metres high. The Jewish section is not seperately fenced.
General Site Condition:
Jewish section within municipal cemetery. The cemetery is well-kept.
Number of existing gravestones:
Date of Oldest Tombstone:
Date of Newest Tombstone:
Urgency of erecting a fence:
Low. The Jewish section requires fencing.
Land Ownership:
Property of Municipality
Mass Graves on Site:
Yes, there is a mass grave of the Jewish community of Dobre, according to different sources, with about 300 to 500 Jewish victims, shot by Nazis in September 1941. Their remains were reburied at this cemetery in 1960, the same year in which the memorial was erected.
Drone surveys:

The Jewish section on municipal cemetery emerged after WWII (there is a grave from 1946), and was in use at least until 2011. In 1960, the remains of the Dobre Jews shot in 1941 were reburied at the cemetery, and a memorial to them was built.

Dobre is a Jewish agricultural colony, founded in 1856. The first Jews who settled in Dobre in 1856 to 1857 were 52 families from the Vilna Province who relocated here. In 1859, the Jewish population of Dobre numbered 481 (162 households). In the same year, a synagogue was built. In 1897, the Jewish population grew to 2,277 (88% of the total population). The other population were German colonists, who had been invited to settle in Dobre to share their agricultural skills. By the late 19th century, 270 Jewish families were engaged in the agricultural sector. Also, the Jews occupied the spheres of the domestic craft and petty trade. In 1867, a first elementary school was opened. In 1891, three synagogues were operational. Also, at that time Jews ran a bathhouse, a feldsher’s station, 18 shops and warehouses, and two taverns in the town. Rabbi Itzhak Pushnits, the great-grandfather of M.- M. Shneerson, served in Dobre between 1854 and 1904. In 1911, a single-grade primary school with a three-year study period was opened. A public library also functioned. During WWI,refugees arrived fleeing the front, and pogroms against the Jewish population took place in 1918 and 1919. During the interwar period, three Jewish schools, clubs, a library, a kindergarten as well as an ambulatory operated. Collectivisation lead to the reduction of the Jewish population, which numbered 2,153 in 1931. The religious community was liquidated in 1938 as a consequence of communist policy. Just before the Nazi’s occupation of Dobre in 1941, 1,277 Jews were living here. 179 Jews were mustered to the front. In 1941, according to different sources, 389 to 560 Jews were murdered and the Jewish cemetery was destroyed. In 1958, the victims’ remains were reburied in the village cemetery in a mass grave, and an obelisk was erected above it. After the war, 85 people returned from their evacuation to the Soviet Union, and 30 people from the army. After 1945, 36 Jewish families, amounting to 185 people, lived in Dobre.