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Porozow Luminaries | Rabbi Dov Kam Interview | 1887 Slownik Geograficzny | Great Fire of Porozow | 1929 Ksiega Adresowa Polski | Jewish Community Officers, 1838 | Enterprise Owners, 1915 | Porozow in Pinkas Hakehillot Polin | Victims of the Porozow Ghetto | Porozow Synagogue

Porozow Luminaries

Read about Ester-Ruchel Kaminska (1870-1925), who founded a Yiddish theater dynasty, and Rabbi Moshe Avigdor Amiel (1883-1946), the Chief Rabbi of Tel Aviv, by clicking the title above this paragraph.


Porozow in Pinkas HaKehillot Polin

An article about Porozow appeared in Volume VIII of the Encyclopedia of Jewish Communities - Poland. Edited by Shmuel Spector and Bracha Freundlich and published in 2005, the book contains articles on many individual towns. The Porozow entry is reproduced here by permission of Yad Vashem Publications. The translation is a joint venture, courtesy of Levi and Ziva Rosenhand.


Victims of the Porozow Ghetto

Click here for a 2007 article by Romuald Sokolovskiy ain 2007 in the Svislochskaya Gazeta, translated by Porozow native Stanislaw Grygorowicz, whose contributions to this website have been invaluable.


An Interview with Rabbi Dov Kam


Dov Kam, a rabbi from Porozow who married the sister of Rabbi Moshe Avigdor Amiel, one of Porozow's luminaries, was born in 1895. He gave this description of Porozow in the early 1900s in an interview. It is included here through the courtesy of his grandson, Allan J. Kam, and Allan's wife, Dr. Judith Mazza.

Dov Kam described the town as having 550 families, of which about 150 were Jewish. The gentile families were mostly Polish (Catholic) and some Russian (Orthodox). Porosovo was given to Poland between the world wars, but before WWI was part of Russia. He said that the Jews did not live in a self-enclosed shtetl, but that the people could mix. The Jews were the shopkeepers, the artisans and lived in the center of the town where the businesses were. The gentiles were farmers.


He said that there were two Russian churches (both rather small and generally only used on Sundays), and one Catholic church which was larger and used daily for mass. There were two synagogues, one heated and the other not. They needed two, because more people would attend on holidays. On Saturdays, all 150 families would participate in some type of study group, "to teach something, to learn something." People would attend the shul regardless of material wealth. If there was some demarcation in the Jewish community, it was based on how learned someone was.

The Jewish boys played among themselves and did not play with either Jewish girls or the gentiles in the town. It also sounded like the boys who spent their time studying in the cheder tended to play together as well. He also said that the marriages were not arranged without the consent of the children.

Dov Kam said that he lived in a brick house that had a living room, two bedrooms and a kitchen...and a succoh. There was also a small garden. The Jews generally dressed in modern clothing during this period, and wanted to be modern. They emulated the German Jews, and called the high school "gymnasia." The gentiles went to the public school which was open six days a week. The Jews couldn't go to school on Saturday, so they went to separate schools.

He said the Germans occupied the town in 1916 and that during the occupation, they paid for the supplies they needed. When the Russians occupied the town, they took what they wanted and did not pay for it. The stores were empty and the people were starving.

The Great Fire of Porozow


The news item at left reporting on a disastrous fire in East Prussia that left 3,000 people homeless and "utterly destroyed" the town of Porozow appeared in a publication called The West Australian on 24 May 1899. A small news item also appeared in the May 21-June 18, 1899 edition of the American Monthly Review of Reviews, with an item that read as follows: "The town of Porosow, Poland, is destroyed by fire, with a loss of 12 lives."


From the 1929 Ksiega Adresowa Polski

(Polish Directory for Trade, Industry, Handicrafts and Agriculture)


Porozow. A small town in Wolkowyski county, the seat of a peace court under the aegis of the district court of Grodno, with 1,793 inhabitants, a township office and a Catholic church. Market days ordinary Wednesdays. Large fairs on the tenth of each month. Manufacturing of textiles.


Doctors - Bibrowski, M.
Lawyers - Siewasiewicz
Wholesale Drugs - Blacher, S.
Pharmacies - Krzywcowa, M.
Concrete Products - Ances A.
Textiles - Alpert, I.
Hats - Polonski, Sz.; Pichsonowicz, N.
Yeast - Hurkawi, L.
Dyeing Factories - Ferder, E.; Furmanska, B.
Barbers - Bujko, F.; Szyszko, M.
Veterinarians - Garwylow, Mikolaj
Hairdressers - Koladycki, J.; Nosewicz
Accessories - Chazanowicz, S; Chmielnicki, S.; Szuchatowicz, H.
Tea Houses - Kulesza, M.
Hotels - Chazanowicz, S.; Szuchatowicz, H.
Shoemakers - Jolin, I.; Nowik, W.
Stone Masons - Szeszel, J.
Colonial Goods (e.g., spices) - Ersztejn, F.; Simanowska, F.; Szapiro, I;  Szuchatowicz, H.
Wheelwrights - Krycki
Cooperatives - Regional Wolkowysk Society
Blacksmiths - Bujko; Cypnik; Dmuchowski; Szeszel
Tailors - Ligier, N.; Poplawski, J.; Wasiukiewicz, H.
Forestry - Chmielnicki, L.
Textile Manufacturing - Bartnowska, M.; Chazanowicz, Sz.; Kadlubowski, L.; Kowal , L.; Nowik, A.
Mills - Cemach, C.
Bricklayers - Jaroszewicz, J.; Rzeznicki, M.; Romanowski, J.
Oil Pressers - Epsztejn, S.; Szrajbman, Z.
Bakeries - Rozenszejn, D.; Segel, E.
Rope Makers - Melamet, A.
Leather Goods - Nidzberg, Ch.
Butchers - Nowodworski, A.; Walder, A.
Leather - Epsztein, S.; Nowik, W.
Alcohol - Astapczyk, A.
Foodstuffs - Kolodycka, S.; Lancowicki, A.; Poczobut, S.; Rabinowicz, A.; Smazanowicz, F.
Carpenters - Feldman; Romanowski J.; Szyszacki
Fabric Factories - Comach, C.
Shoe Repair - Bernat, A.; Bagicki, D.; Porozowski, Z.; Szoszel, A.; Wiszniowski, M.
Turners, Locksmiths - Nowosad, A.
Windmills - Glakowski ,A.; Poplawski, F.
Taverns - Alpert, Izrael
Iron Goods - Bartnowski, L.; Epsztejn. S.; Norozymski, M; Trop, Sz.
[Translation courtesy of Monika Hendry]

From the 1887 Slownik Geograficzny   

(Geographical Dictionary)


Porozow, Porozowo, Porosow. A little town on the River Rosia in Wolkowysk County, about 20 km from Lyskow, 20 from Wolkowysk and 90 from Grodno, by the road to Pruzany, 300 households (699 men and 755 women) including 556 Jews (in 1878). Christians are involved mainly in pottery production, Jews in trade. The town has a Russian Orthodox church and a Catholic church of Saint Michael. This brick church was built in 1825 by Parson Michal Grabowiecki, with support from residents. The previous church of Saint Peter and Paul, built in 1460 and funded by Jan Jagintowicz Rywind, was destroyed by fire in 1767 and rebuilt by Count Tyszkiewicz. The current church is rectangular, 53 elbows long (one elbow = 22.68 inches) and adorned with an iron cross. The architectural style is simple: it has three altars, one holds the picture of Saint Antoni Padewski. The Russian Orthodox parish has 1,963 followers (954 men and 1,008 women) while the Catholic parish has 5,245 followers and a chapel at the cemetery. [Translation courtesy of Monika Hendry].

Officers of the Porozow Jewish Community, October 1, 1838

[This list was provided courtesy of Herbert J. Maletz, President of the Pruzhany Uyzed Research Society].


Lyshchinsky, Moishe Chaimovich, age 46, Rabbi

Lyshchinsky, Mendel Oreliovich, age 35, Starosta (County head)

Porozovsky, Karpal Berkovich, age 30, Kaznachei  (Maggid, or preacher)

Jankeliovich, Moishe, age 45, Kahalnyie 1 (Member of the Community)

Abromovich, Chaim, age 35, Kahalnyie 2  (Member of the Community)

Travicky, Istko Nevachovich, Age 40, Kahalnyie 3 (Member of the Community)

Prychybylsky, Shimel Oreliovich, Age 27, Kanditatu (Candidate)

[Translation courtesy of Monika Hendry].


1809 Census Data


These names appear on an August, 1809 list of supplementary census data from Porozow Parish, Wolkowysk District; ages follow the names:

Lewickij, Iosel Ickowich - 36
Lewickij, Meer Yudelewich - 45
Trawickij , Shimel Tankhemyl - 26
Khinna, Zhena Shimki Osherowicha - 28
Trizwickij, Iosel' Kalmanowich - 26


The list ends with the notation that "All Jews, without exception, expressed the desire to be included forever among the residents of Porozow town."

1889 Market Days


Market days, or yarmarka, (ярмарки) in Porozow and nearby towns were published in the Pamyatnaya knizhka (Памятная книжка) or business directory, for Grodno Gubernia in 1889. Most goods - food, housewares, clothes, farm animals and the like - could be purchased at these markets. Market days for Porozow during that year were May 9, June 13, August 15, September 8, November 1 and December 6.

1915 List of Owners of Registered Trade/Industrial Enterprises in Porozow

[This list was provided courtesy of Herbert J. Maletz, President of the Pruzhany Uyzed Research Society, whose website can be found here].

Alpern, Sroel Benjaminovich Bazarnaja Square

Bartnovskaja, Malka Movshevna Bazarnaja Square

Bartnovskij, Jankel-Simkha Vigderovich Bazarnaja Square

Begun, Ejdlia Shimeleva Subbotskaja Street

Bliakher, Samuil Isakovich Svislochskaja Street

Cimer, Lejba Movshev Novodvorskaja

Drogichinskaja, Leja Jankeleva Ruzhanskaja Street

Elin, Girsh Ajzikov Novodvorskaja Street

Elin, Liba Jankeleva Novodvorskaja

Elin, Rasha Shliomova Ruzhanskaja Street

Elin, Rokhlia Lejbovna Bazarnaja Square

Elin, Sakhar Girshev Ruzhanskaja

Elin, Sholom Nokhmanov Novodvorskaja

Elin, Zejdel Lejbov Subbotskaja Street

Elinovich, Shmuel Lejbov near town

Epshtein, Frejda Sokhorova Novodvorskaja

Epshtein, Sokhar Benjamonov Novodvorskaja

Fajnberg, Genia-Liba Lejbovna Novodvorskaja

Fajnberg, Movsha Khackelevich Novodvorskaja

Ferder, Civa Shajovna Ruzhanskaja

Ferder, Khaja-Rejzlia Ickovna Ruzhanskaja

Golman, Icko Movshov Bazarnaja Square

Kac, Mirsha Ajzikova Novodvorskaja

Kadlibovskij, Shmuel Joselev Ruzhanskaja

Kadlubovskaja, Leja Senderovna Ruzhanskaja

Kagan, Lejba Dovidova Volkovyskaja Street

Kagan, Liba Noseleva Bazarnaja Square

Kaliadickij, Evel Mendelevich Svislochskaja

Kam, Khana Mordkhelevna Volkovyskaja

Kam, Mordkhel Berkovich Volkovyskaja

Khazanovich, Minia Khaimovna Ruzhanskaja

Khmelnickaja, Nekha Benjaminovna Bazarnaja

Khvojnik, Elka Khaimova Subbotskaja

Klin, Touba-Rokhlia Khackelevna Ruzhanskaja

Koval, Rokhlia Zelikovna Svislochskaja

Koval, Abram Volfovich Svislochskaja

Kumit, Borukh Ickov Volkovyskaja

Lancevickaja, Liza Ajzikova Novodvorskaja

Lasman, Josel Shmuelev Ruzhanskaja

Leshchinskij, Jankel-Kodysh Khackelevich Subbotskaja Street

Leshchinskij, Shlioma Azrielevich Bazarnaja

Levickaja, Fejglia Borukhovna Bazarnaja Square

Levin, Khajka Girsheva Novodvorskaja

Malec, Lejzer Dovidov   Ruzhanskaja

Malec, Meer Dovidov Ruzhanskaja

Malec, Mordkhel Meerov Ruzhanskaja

Mirskij, Abram Zundelevich Bazarnaja

Muravskaja, Basha Abramova Bazarnaja

Narozhimskij, Movsha Meerov Bazarnaja

Nicberg, Khaim Nokhomovich Bazarnaja

Nicberg, Sora Benjamonova Bazarnaja

Niselbaum, Cipa Jankelevna Meerovna Novodvorskaja

Niselbaum, Rokhlia Zelikova Novodvorskaja

Novickij, Girsh Jankelevich Bazarnaja

Novik, Vigder Jankelevich Novodvorskaja

Novodvorskij, Aron Ickov Volkovyskaja

Pribulskij, Giler Eliev Bazarnaja

Rabinovich, Sora Berkovna Ruzhanskaja

Rozemblum, Abram Rafailov Ruzhanskaja

Rozenshejn, Doba Girshovna Subbotskaja Street

Shebshinskaja, Sora Nakhmanova Bazarnaja

Shrajbman, Lesha Leja Movsheva Volkovyskaja

Shukhatovich, Khava Ickova Ruzhanskaja

Simanovskij, Iser Srolev Bazarnaja

Slepovich, Basha Zelikovna Novodvorskaja

Soroka, Leja Abramovna Svislochskaja

Taran, Shimel Jankelev Volkovyskaja

Trop, Vigdor Shlemov Bazarnaja

Valder, Aron Mikhel Bazarnaja Square

Zaluckaja, Ester Movsheva Novodvorskaja

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