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KAISADORYS: Kaunus County, Kaišiadorys district , Kaunus PDF Print E-mail

Alternate names: Kaišiadorys [Lith], Koshedar [Yid], Koszedary [Pol], Koshedary [Rus], Kayshyadoris, Kayshadorys, Kayshadoris, Kasheydarys, Kashedary, Kaišiadorio, Kaišedorys, Kaishiadorys, Kaisiadoris, Kashedar, Koshidar, Russian: Кошедары, Кайшядорис.קאָשעדאַר- Yiddish. 54°52' N, 24°27' E, capital of Trakai Apskritis (Troki district) of Lithuania between the wars (1920-1939), when the city of Troki was in Poland. ShtetLink. 1900 Jewish population: 317.

Before WWI, Kaišaidorys became a railway junction, attracting an increasing population. Jewish families moved to the town from rural areas. On the eve of WWI, Kaišaidorys had around 60 Jewish families, but during the war,  Czarist authorities deported Jews to the distant parts of Russia. After the war, many Jews returned. In the inter-war period a deteriorating economy encouraged some Jews to emigrate to the USA, South Africa, Uruguay, and Palestine. On the eve of the Shoah, either 60 or 150 Jewish families lived in Kaišaidorys. In Summer 1941, the total population was 2,100. [March 2009]

CEMETERY: Burial list and pictures. [November 2002]

Cemetery information. [September 2010]

MASS GRAVES: During the Nazi occupation, Kaišiadorys Rural District was a part of Trakai District. In the first weeks of the war, the Rural District administration and police were organized in Kaišiadorys. Discrimination against the Jews in Kaišiadorys commenced. On Nazi orders, the governor of Trakai District, established weekly food rations for Jews (half that of non-Jews) and confiscated their radios. The Jews were deprived of their civic rights and driven into ghettos and temporary isolation camps. The ghetto was to be located around Vytauto and Vilniaus Streets. However, the Jews were placed in several locations: Vytauto-Vilniaus Streets Ghetto, the the synagogue that burned down later, and in Kiemeliai Village. Jews from surrounding towns (Žasliai, Žiežmariai) also were taken to Kaišiadorys Ghettos. 105 Jewish families (375 persons) living in the town were to be taken into houses No. 40-60 Vytauto Street and No. 12-14 Vilniaus Street, a total of 23 houses assigned to the Ghetto by August 10. The local authority encountered great difficulties trying to establish a Jewish Council. The Jews refused to cooperate. After repeated urging, the Jews of Kaišiadorys elected Rabbi Aronas Jofanas, Zelikas Feldmanas, Chaimas Gansas and Elija Judelevičius. The chief of Kaišiadorys appointed A. Jofanas Chairman, and Z. Feldmanas as Deputy Chairman. Mid-August preparations for the massacre began. 80 Jewish men and 14 women were arrested in town, _36 men and 85 women in Žasliai, and 282 Jews (among them 89 women) in Žiežmariai. The Žasliai and Žiežmariai Jews were delivered to Kaišiadorys, a total of 824 Jewish men and women with the number of detained children is not specified. By August 26, contagious diseases were spreading among the detainees, with one fatal case recorded. The Jews of Kaišiadorys, Žiežmariai, and Žasliai) were killed on August 26 or 27. 1,911 Jewish men, women and children were shot in Strošiūnai forest, about 3 km N of Žiežmariai at Vladikiškiai village. Victims were buried in three twelve-meter ditches. They were executed by an auxiliary police squad from Kaunas and German soldiers, the notorious J. Hamann's "Flying Squad". The Jews' property was placed temporarily under the authority of Rural District self-governments. A separate inventory for each family was created. The local administration auctioned immovable property with the movable property kept under police authority until a special order came. The ghetto remaining on the north side of Kiemeliai village close to Kaišiadorys cemetery on the old Kaišiadoyrs-Kiemeliai road was turned into a labor camp for prisoners in Kaunas Ghetto. Several wooden barracks were in the Ghetto that was fenced with barbed wire and had guards' towers. Nearby was a peat bog and narrow rails running to it. Workers manually transported the peat to hand carts. Around 500 Jews were imprisoned in Kiemeliai Ghetto. Women and men from the Ghetto were driven to cut in the forest. Sometimes guards allowed Jewish girls to visit farmers to rest and ask for food. When the Jews were removed from the Ghetto, villagers from Kiemeliai village plundered the remaining property: clothing, bedding and other items. A certain portion of the Jewish property was taken to Kaišiadorys.  Even on June 6, 1943, 100 Jews from Kaunas Ghetto were sent to dig peat in Kaišiadorys. On July 2, 1943, about 1,400 Jews were digging peat. Living conditions were bearable, but a number from this camp escaped to Kaunas Ghetto. The Gestapo ordered the Ghetto's administration to locate these fugitives and return them to Kaišiadorys. On August 1, the Ukrainian guards who guarded the camp staged an uprising and killed a German chief of Kaišiadorys Camp, a specialist from Holland, and two Ukrainians loyal to Germans, and escaped to the forest afterwards.  Kaunas Ghetto administration feared that these events may provide an excuse to exterminate all Jews who worked in the camp. Apparently, the Germans did not retaliate. The labor camp in Kaišaidorys still functioned late in September 1943. The date of its liquidation is unknown. [March 2009]

Last Updated on Saturday, 25 September 2010 14:50
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