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Nemirov

Nemirov, Nemirov County, Vinnitsa District, Ukraine

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Jews started to settle in Nemirov in the late 16th or early 17th century. Many Jews from Nemirov were brutally massacred in 1648 by the Cossacks during the Bogdan Chmielnitsky uprising. In the course of the 18th century also the Jewish population of Nemirov suffered greatly from the attacks of Cossacks and Haidamaks.
In 1897 5,287 Jews lived in Nemirov, constituting 59.3 percent of the town's total population.
In 1905 a pogrom in Nemirov was prevented by the personal intervention of Princess Shcherbatova, who resided in the town.
Jewish self-defense that had been organized in Nemirov succeeded in preventing a pogrom in January of 1918. Both due to the self-defense organization and to the good relations between the Jews and gentiles in Nemirov the former were spared the violence that was rampant in Ukraine during the revolution and civil war. Nemirov served as a haven for the Jews of surrounding towns, who did suffer from pogroms.
Soviet policy directed toward the elimination of traditional Jewish occupations forced many Jews of Nemirov to seek new ones. Many turned to agriculture. In 1923 a Jewish agricultural cooperative was established. During the early Soviet period many young Jews of Nemirov left the town in search of new educational and vocational opportunities in the large cities.
From the 1920s until the late 1930s there were two Yiddish schools in Nemirov.
In 1939 3,001 Jews lived in Nemirov, constituting 36.7 percent of the town's total population. After the German invasion of Poland in September 1939 a number of Jewish families from Poland sought refuge in Nemirov.
German troops occupied Nemirov on July 22, 1941. Few Jews succeeded in leaving in time. Ukrainian auxiliary police immediately started rounding up Jews for forced labor. Several Jewish men were shot dead after being accused of being Communists. A month later all the town's Jews were forced into a ghetto consisting of three streets fenced off with barbed wire. The ghetto inmates were compelled to wear white armbands with a Star of David; they were later replaced by a Star of David worn on the chest and back. The Jews were forced to pay a 100,000 ruble ransom; 20 Jewish men were taken hostage by the German authorities to ensure this payment. The ghetto inmates were forced to perform various types of grueling work.
The majority of Nemirov Jews were murdered in two large-scale massacres: in late November 1941 and in late June 1942. The survivors of these massacres were incarcerated in a labor camp on the outskirts of Nemirov. The inmates of this camp were forced to work on the construction of Thoroughfare IV, which was to connect Lwow and Taganrog. About 1,000 Jews from the Romanian occupation zone of Transnistria were also deported to this camp. Some survivors from the Nemirov ghetto were deported to a labor camp in Bratslav, where most of them were ultimately murdered. The inmates of the Nemirov labor camp were murdered in several massacres in 1942 and 1943. The total number of Holocaust victims from Nemirov exceeded 3,000.
The Red Army temporarily liberated Nemirov on January 10, 1944, but the Germans reoccupied it four days later. Nemirov was finally liberated by the Red Army on March 15, 1944.