After breakfast at the hotel, we travel to Zhytomyr. Besides visiting Old Jewish quarter, graves of Reb Wolf, Reb Aaron the Great Maggid, and Bogunsky Forest Memorial which is the site of mass graves & Synagogue. You will also learn about the history of Jewish book publishing, which -- because of the tsarist Russian's restriction on the Jewish book publishing -- existed for a long time only in Vilna had Zhitomir. 

 

We'll meet with the members of the city's Jewish communiy as well as visit a Lubavitch Chabad which has gotten back the synagogue building and organized yeshiva, school, kindergarten, library, and a dining hall for something like 5,000 Jews who live there.

 

After lunch, we proceed to Berdychiv which at one time almost entirely Jewish town. Jews there were first mentioned in 1593. Towards the mid-eighteenth century, the city became one of the main Jewish centers of Ukraine, earning the esteemed title “Jerusalem of Volhynia.”
 

From 1785, Berdichev was home to Rabbi Levi Yitzhak of Berdichev, a prominent Hassidic leader, as well as Rabbi Yitzhak Ber Levinzon, a famous advocate of Jewish Enlightenment, where you will have a chance to visit Old Jewish quarter, Synagogue & Jewish cemetery with Tsadik Levy-Yitshok grave.

 

During the 1917 revolution and the civil war of 1917–19 a Bundist leader D. Lipets was the head of the community and the town mayor. After the revolt of October 1917, Berdichev was inundated with Yevsektsiya activists, the Jewish section of the Communist Party, who arrested and disarmed the Zionists, a Jewish self-defense group formed on the eve of the Petliura pogroms in early 1919. But when they defeated the followers of Petliura, and later, in June 1920, expelled the Polish troops from Berdichev, a new pogrom, this time instigated by the Bolsheviks befell the inhabitants of the city.

 

Getting to Vinnitsa for dinner and evening stroll.

 

 

Day 4, Sunday, May 13

Kiev – Zhytomyr – Berdychiv – Vinnitsa

Center for Jewish Life Studies

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