Thursday, 20 July 2017


YEKHIEL (HERMAN) MANTEL (1880-April 10, 1948)
            He was born in Mishkolts (Miskolc), Hungary.  He descended from generations of rabbis and rebbes in Hungary.  At age eighteen he received ordination into the rabbinate.  He was in the Austrian army (1914-1915) on the war fronts with Russia.  Afterward he lived in Vienna, where he became engaged in business and was an active Mizrachi leader.  He was the cofounder of Mizrachi in Hungary.  He published articles in the Yiddish and German Jewish press in Austria and in Hungary.  From 1932 he was living in the United States, the rabbi at the Or Ḥadash (New light) synagogue in New York.  He contributed to: Dos yidishe likht (The Jewish light), Der mizrakhi-veg (The Mizrachi way), and Morgn-zhurnal (Morning journal), among other serials, in New York.  His books include: Vort un tsayt (Word and time), sermons on Tanakh issues (New York, 1938), 2 vols., each 148 pp.; Mantels folks redner, droshes un redes far ale yomim toyvim un farshidene gelegenheyten (Mantel’s public speaker, sermons and speeches for all holidays and various occasions), “an encyclopedia for rabbis, preachers, and public speakers” (including sermons by his son, Khayim Dov Mantel, published after Y. Mantel’s death) (New York, 1948), 259 pp.  He died in New York.

Sources: Information from his wife in New York; obituary notices in the Yiddish press in New York.
Khayim Leyb Fuks


TSVI MANHEYM (b. August 7, 1918)
            He was born in Baranov (Baranów), Poland.  After WWII he was in Jewish displaced persons’ camps in Germany.  He worked as a Hebrew teacher.  He wrote for the press of the survivors in Germany: Dos vort (The word), Unzer veg (Our way), and Yidishe tsaytung (Jewish newspaper)—in Munich.

Berl Kagan, comp., Leksikon fun yidish-shraybers (Biographical dictionary of Yiddish writers) (New York, 1986), col. 365.


ODEL MONDRI (ADELE MONDRY) (January 15, 1900-April 1986)
            She was born in Vishkove (Wyszków), Poland.  She was raised in a Hassidic household.  She attended a Polish high school.  In 1920 she immigrated to the United States.  She wrote stories for Morgn zhurnal (Morning journal) and Tog (Day) in New York.  In book form: A shtetl baym bug (A village by the Bug [River]) (Tel Aviv: Measef Yisroel, 1968), 187 pp., English translation by Moshe Spiegel: Wyszkowo, a Shtetl on the Bug River (New York: Ktav Publishing House, 1980), 151 pp.

Sources: Sh. Teneboym, in Di shtime (Mexico City) (October 12, 1968); Y. Emyot, in Folk un velt (New York) (April 1969).

Berl Kagan, comp., Leksikon fun yidish-shraybers (Biographical dictionary of Yiddish writers) (New York, 1986), col. 364.

Wednesday, 19 July 2017


            He came from Vinitse (Vinnytsa, Vinnytsya), Ukraine.  In 1881 (with a group from “Am Olam” [Eternal people]), he moved to the United States and settled in Philadelphia.  He cofounded and contributed to the political biweekly Yudishes folksblat (Jewish people’s newspaper) in Philadelphia (1894), which was close to anarchist circles.  He published poems there and wrote editorial articles.  He also placed work in: Der folks-advokat (The people’s advocate), Teglekher herald (Daily herald), and Di varhayt (The truth)—in New York; and Der literarisher shtrahl (The literary beam [of light]) and other serials in Philadelphia.  He was set to return to Russia after the Russian Revolution of 1917.

Sources: D. B. Tirkel, in Pinkes fun amopteyl fun yivo (Records of the American division of YIVO), vol. 1 (New York, 1927-1928), p. 260; M. Frihman, Fuftsik yor geshikhte fun idishen lebn in filadelfye (Fifty years of Jewish life in Philadelphia) (Philadelphia, 1934).
Khayim Leyb Fuks


SHLOYME MANDELKERN (April 12, 1846-1902)
            He was born in Mlyniv, Volhynia.  He was the author of the large concordance Hekhal hakodesh (The hall of sanctity) and a great series of works in Hebrew, Russian, and Yiddish, from which Sefer zikaron (Book of remembrance) cites as Teḥiyat hametim (Reviving the dead) (Vilna, 1868).  He died in Vienna.

Source: Zalmen Reyzen, Leksikon, vol. 2, with a bibliography.


            He was born in Kurów, Lublin district, Poland.  In 1957 (1937?), he made his way to Havana, Cuba.  His literary activities began in the journal Oyfgang (Arise), in which he published humorous sketches and poems.  Over the course of two decades, he contributed to a series of Yiddish parodical publications in Havana.  For a time he was in charge of a column entitled “Umgetsoymte gedanken” (Unbridled ideas) in the magazine Yidish vort (Jewish word).  He graduated from the school for journalists at the University of Havana.  In 1951 he made his way to the United States and took courses in writing techniques at Columbia University in New York.  He published sketches and articles in Cuban Spanish-language periodicals and in New York’s Spanish-language daily newspaper La Prensa (The press).  He was later writing mostly in English.

Sources: Y. Reznik, in Havaner lebn, almanac (1943), pp. 304-5; B. Ts. Goldberg, in Tog (New York) (February 25, 1944); L. Ran, Hemshekh af kubaner erd (Continued on Cuban soil) (Havana, 1951), pp. 61, 63.
Leyzer Ran


RIFOEL MANDELTSVAYG (September 22, 1908-July 12, 1956)
            He was born in Warsaw, Poland.  In 1929 he graduated from the Warsaw Art School and went on to improve his painting in Paris and Brussels.  After returning to Poland, in the 1930s he exhibited his work at the Zachęta Sztuk Pięknych (Encouragement of fine arts) and other art galleries.  With the outbreak of WWII in 1939, he fled to Soviet Russia and roamed as far away as Samarkand, where he painted images from the Jewish devastations, Jewish types from Central Asia, and (in 1945) received a medal for his works.  He returned to Poland in 1946.  In 1947 he made his way to Brazil and finally settled in Montevideo, Uruguay.  In 1949 he and the poet Elye Verblun began publishing the journal Bleter far kunst un literatur (Pages for art and literature), and there in issue no. 1 he published a piece entitled “Yidn in breyshis fun der kunst” (Jews at the genesis of art).  In 1950 a community committee in Buenos Aires, Argentina, published (under the editorship of Pikhes Bizberg, Dr. L. Zhitnitski, Simkhe Sneh, and M. Zakin) Mandeltsvayg’s art album with a biographical sketch of the artist as an introduction “Rifoel mandeltsvaygs kinstlerishe velt” (Rifoel Mandeltsvayg’s artistic world) by Tsalel Blits, and seventy-three reproductions of his works.  He died suddenly in Buenos Aires.

Sources: Yitskhok Vaynshenker, Poshet mitokh libshaft (Simply out of love) (Montevideo, 1955); Vaynshenker, Boyers un mitboyers fun yidishn yishev in urugvay (Founders and builders of the Jewish community in Uruguay) (Montevideo, 1957); local news and obituary notices in the Yiddish press; Who’s Who in World Jewry (New York, 1955).
Zaynvl Diamant