Jewish cemetery in Krichev, Belarus Republic

The list of Burials and their photos available HERE

Krichev is a small town with a special and rather long Jewish history. Since the very first mentions of the city, and this is 1136, it can be seen that the Jews were associated with a rather high and responsible position in society.

For example, they held positions of treasurers and tax collectors. Although it played a cruel joke with them, and at the time of the uprising it largely set the population against them. That’s why the results were deplorable. So in 1740–1744, as a result of the brutal attacks of the insurgents, a lot of the Jewish population died.

Although by the end of that century the first Jewish light cavalry squadron had been organized in the town. A special German officer was invited to train Jewish horsemen. And it was quite a significant fact. Because since the time when the Temple was destroyed, this is the first time when a foreign state deliberately armed the Jews.

Also, the 18th century was marked by a special industrial development of the town — many factories and workshops operated. Among the main specialists, of course, there were a lot of Jews. Such a rapid development made Krichev a modern industrial center at the time, where even foreign masters came.

A well-known historian of the time, E.R. Romanov mentioned that despite the conditions of persecution and oppression, the Jews of Krichev were able to preserve their morals, a special law and even their characteristic appearance (in clothes, for example), which indicates their special devotion to their culture . He also noted that among them there are a lot of educated and inventive people, and their masters are not inferior in their professionalism.

At the beginning of the 19th century, there were more than 2,000 Jews in the town and 2 synagogues were constantly active. There was also a special place for Jewish burial places, where, according to recollections, at the beginning of the year families came to honor their loved ones. One of the cemeteries, which for many years belonged to the Jewish community, was decided in 1927 to be built for building a tile factory. This was evidence of not the best attitude of the Soviet authorities. Then the Jews tried to keep their cemetery, but this did not bring success. Although the cemetery was not given to the artel, it was given to the municipal economy.

Actually, even now in the town there is a small Jewish community. But it is literally several dozen people. Also, at the moment, there is an ancient cemetery. It needs special care to preserve at least that much of the multifaceted, not always joyful, but certainly significant Jewish history of the town.


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