BOSNIA & HERZEGOVINA
Listings by location are found below THE JEWISH COMMUNITY
THE JEWISH COMMUNITY
26 Jewish cemeteries were identified in this country as of 1999 by Srdjan Matic, MD, New York, NY 10025.
Heritage Films information. [January 2001]
Jewish Community of Bosnia and Herzegovina: [January 2009]Hamdije Kresevljakovica 83
71000 Sarajevo, Bosnia-Herzegovina
+387 71 663 472
+387 71 663 473
Dario Atijas, secretary general of the Jewish community in Doboj, North Bosnia and Herzgegovina, seeks help to coordinate a project, together with Lea Maestro from Jewish community in Sarajevo, for preservation of Jewish cemeteries in Bosnia. There are around 44 cemeteries according to Ivica Čeresnjes, Jewish researcher.[July 2010]
[January 2009] Administrative Divisions: two first-order administrative divisions currently approved by the US Government are
- Muslim/Croat Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina (Federacija Bosnia i Herzegovina). The Muslim/Croat Federation is comprised of 10 cantons: Goradzde (5), Livno (10), Middle Bosnia (6), Neretva (7), Posavina (2), Sarajevo (9), Tuzla Podrinje (3), Una Sana (1), West Herzegovina (8), and Zenica Doboj (4).
- Republika Srpska.
Bosnia and Herzegovina: Reference - Country Guide, E-mail and Business Page Directories [January 2009]
Maps: http://slavophilia.net/ and http://www.cco.caltech.edu/~bosnia/bosnia.html and Maps of Bosnia
JewishGen's ShtetlSeeker references border changes to locate a given town.
Bosnia and Herzegovina Search Engines: [January 2009]
"One of the republics in central Yugoslavia with the largest Muslim population (750,000). There is no evidence of the existence of a Jewish community in Bosnia before the expulsion of the Jews from Spain. Tombstone inscriptions prove the existence of Jews in Sarajevo in 1551. A special quarter was allocated to them later in the 16th century and they lived there until the conquest of the town by the Austrians in 1878. During the rule of Daudji Pasha, who was appointed in 1635, the relations between Turkey and Venice became strained. This had an adverse effect on the commerce of the local Jews. During the siege of Ofen in 1686 many Jews fled to Sarajevo, including Zevi Hirsch Ashkenazi (Hakham Zevi), who was appointed hakham there. A change for the worse in the situation of the Jews of Sarajevo occurred in 1833. In was only after payment of a heavy ransom that the Jews were saved from the danger of riots and blood libel. The laws of 1839, 1856, and 1876, which granted the Jews of Turkey equality of rights with the other citizens, also applied to the Jews of Bosnia. From then onward, some Jews were elected to the Ottoman parliament in Constantinople and the municipal councils. In 1876 Yaver Effendi Barukh was sent to the parliament as the representative of Bosnia. Isaac Effendi Shalom was a member of the Majlis Idareh ("Advisory Council to the Vali"). Upon his death, his place was filled by his son Solomon Effendi Shalom, who was also a representative in the parliament. Two Jewish delegates were sent to the Landstag which was opened in 1910. Besides Sarajevo, there were also Jewish communities in the towns of Travnik, Banja Luka, Bijeljina, and others. The following data are available on the number of Jews in Bosnia from the end of the 18th century. There were 1,500 Jews in 1780; 8,213 in 1895; 10,000 (Sephardim) in 1923; 13,701 in 1926; 14,000 in 1941 (together with Herzegovina); and 1,298 in 1958. In addition to the Nazis and the Usta2e who were active in Bosnia in World War II, the former mufti of Jerusalem, Hajj Am Source [February 2009]
Post-Second World War communist Yugoslavia (six federated republics: Serbia, Croatia, Slovenia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Macedonia, and Montenegro under Marshal Josip Broz Tito): Jewish life began to return to the Balkans. With approximately 14,500 out of a pre-war population of 16,000 Serbian Jews killed, from 1948 many of those survivors migrated to Israel. Abandoned and ruined synagogues and cemeteries: Former synagogues gradually weree either demolished or had new uses. Many cemeteries were abandoned with some pillaged and gravestones used for construction. Others became overgrown and almost forgotten.
The Jewish community (about 6,000 people throughout the former Yugoslavia) was recognised as both an ethnic and a religious community. Communist Yugoslavia was not a part of the Soviet bloc so local Jews were not persecuted or isolated. They further assimilated into society and lost contact with religious life. There was only one rabbi in the country. The Federation of Yugoslav Jewish Communities cared for Jewish cemeteries, synagogues, and other infrastructure where communities no longer exist. Some cemeteries were moved. Some were maintained. The Jewish community also erected close to thirty memorials within former Yugoslavia to commemorate Jews lost during the war. Throughout the 1980s, wide-ranging programs run by the Federation and individual Jewish communities were helped by international Jewish philanthropy.
This began with the secession of Slovenia, and then of Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina, in 1991. A series of bloody Balkan wars tore apart the country, left hundreds of thousands of dead and millions displaced, and destroyed thousands of religious, cultural and historic heritage sites. The state's collapse made the the continuation of Jewish institutions particularly difficult, even without the trauma of war and the Jewish emigration that resulted. Gradually the small Jewish communities of the former Yugoslavia have recreated themselves as more locally-based organisations, gradually rebuilt earlier connections, and expanded their association with Jewish communities and institutions in Israel and throughout Europe.
[January 2009] Source of the following: http://www.jewish-heritage-europe.eu/country/bosnia/bosnia.htm#5
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- Kosmajska Temple: (2007)
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- Krosnar, Katka. "In Belgrade, man wants memorial to a 'forgotten concentration camp'",
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- Niš synagogue:
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http://cja.huji.ac.il/NL15-yugoslavia.htm (accessed January 2008).
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- Serotta, Edward. Survival in Sarajevo: How a Jewish community came to the aid of its city, Vienna: Brandstätter, 1994.
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