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Archivo de Shmerke Kaczerginski

Document | Digitized | Accession Number: 2012.84 | RG Number: RG-72.016M

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    This collection contains personal papers of Shmerke Kaczerginski (1908-1954), former partisan and collector of Jewish music: i.d. documents, photographs, correspondence, manuscripts, and secondary sources such as clippings and publications about Kaczerginski’s life and work (includes Kaczerginski's book, "Destruction of Jewish Vilna", published in New York in 1947).
    inclusive:  1908-1954
    Collection Creator
    Szmerke Kaczerginski
    Shmerke Kaczerginski (1908-1954), Yiddish writer and cultural activist, born in Vilna, Lithuania. orphaned at age six and raised by his grandfather, Kaczerginski learned the lithographer's trade. As a youth, he was involved with outlawed Communist groups and was arrested several times, serving a lengthy prison term. In the 1930s, two of his revolutionary poems became popular in Poland. He wrote short stories with a radical bent and was a correspondent and reporter for literary publications, including the semilegal leftist press in Poland and the New York Communist daily Morgn-frayhayt. During the first period of Nazi occupation, Kaczerginski wandered through villages and towns posing as a deaf mute; after many difficulties, he ended up in the Vilna ghetto. Kaczerginski was a member of the Fareynikte Partizaner Organizatsye (United Partisans Organization; FPO). In September 1943, Kaczerginski, along with Avrom and Freydke Sutzkever and other members of the FPO, escaped from the Vilna ghetto as part of an organized group of fighters just before its liquidation. They joined a Soviet partisan unit in the Naroch Forests, where Kaczerginski fought as a partisan until liberation in July 1944. Kaczerginski’s books describe the destruction of Vilna, the partisan struggle, and his own experiences during the Holocaust period: Khurbn Vilne (The Destruction of Vilna; 1947), Partizaner geyen (Partisans on the Move; 1947), and Ikh bin geven a partizan (I Was a Partisan; 1952). Refer to extended biography here:
    Shmerke Katsherginski ondenk-bukh (Buenos Aires, 1955). For the story of the Paper Brigade, see: David E. Fishman, Embers Plucked from the Fire: The Rescue of Jewish Cultural Treasures in Vilna (rev. ed., New York, 2010).

    YIVO archival resources: RG 223, Abraham Sutzkever–Szmerke Kaczerginski.


    Physical Details

    Yiddish English
    2,533 digital images : JPEG ; 1.92 GB.
    3 microfilm reels ; 35 mm.
    1 DVD-ROM ; 4 3/4 in..

    Rights & Restrictions

    Conditions on Access
    This material can only be accessed in a Museum reading room or other on-campus viewing stations. No other access restrictions apply to this material.
    Conditions on Use
    Duplication of microfilms/scans for third parties and commercial use including publication of documents requires the written permission of Fundación IWO

    Keywords & Subjects

    Geographic Name
    Vilnius (Lithuania)

    Administrative Notes

    Holder of Originals
    Yiṿo in Argenṭine
    Source of acquisition is the Yiṿo in Argenṭine (Fundación IWO). The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Archives received the collection via the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum’s International Archives Project in March 2012.
    Record last modified:
    2022-07-28 17:51:04
    This page:

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