You are here: Home Eastern Europe Lithuania SVENCIONELIAI: Vilna

Alternate names: Svencioneliai [Lith], Nowo-Święciany [Pol], Nei-Sventzion [Yid], Novo-Sventsyany [Rus], Nowe Swieciany. 55°10' N, 26°00' E, 7 miles W of Švenčionys, on the banks of Kuna Stream and Zeimena River, amid forests and lakes, 46.6 miles NE of Vilnius. Yizkor: Sefer zikaron le-esrim ve-shalosh kehilot she-nehrevu be-ezor Svintsian (Tel Aviv, 1965). 1900 Jewish population: 540. ShtetLink. One of the oldest towns in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, the city grew during the 14th-16th centuries when as a local court and with a monastery. The city was part of the Second Polish Republic for most of the interwar period. Thousands of local Jews and Poles perished during WWII. Later, it was part of the Lithuanian SSR. [March 2009]

MASS GRAVES: Holocaust memorials. One reads: "Here lie 8000 Jews from Svencionys and its vicinity, who were murdered by the German Nazis and their local assistants on the 15th and 16th of Tishrei 5702 (October 7th and 8th 1941)." The Jews of Svintsyan (now Svencioneliai) and Jews brought to the Ghetto from surrounding communities were locked in barracks at  Poligon (former Polish army camp) for several days and then shot on October 9, 1941, a total of 3,726 Jews from the Svintsyan Ghetto--1169 Jewish men, 1840 Jewish women, and 717 Jewish children. Svintsyan Ghetto was completely liquidated in April 1943 when the remaining Jews were packed into boxcars. Told they were going to Kovno, they went instead at Ponary, the mass slaughter site of Jews from Vilna.  One guard opened the door and told the occupants to run, but guards shot at them with only a few making it to the forest. See more details at The Birthday Party. [March 2009]

Former shooting-ground of Svencioneliai, at the river Zeimena; 164-165; pic. # 276-279. Outskirts of Svencioneliai, at the road to the village of Lakaja (two massacre sites) 166; pic. # 281 US Commission for the Preservation of America's Heritage Abroad

Last Updated on Thursday, 20 August 2009 17:55
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