ILVA MARE: Bistrita County, Transylvania Print

 

The cemetery is located at Ilva Mare, near the village, Bistrita, 4722 2454, 210.6 miles NNW of Bucharest and 55 km from Nasaud. Alternate name: Nagyilva (Hungarian), Grossilva (German). Present town population is 1,000-5,000 with no Jews.

  • Mayor Pop Pavel, Ilva Mare
  • The Jewish Community of Bistrita, Gr. Balan Str., 71, cod 4400, Bistrita, Romania
  • The Federation of the Jewish Communities of Romania, Sf. Vineri Str., no 9-11, Sector 3, Bucharest, Romania.
  • "Dr. Moshe Carmilly" Institute for Hebrew and Jewish History, Universitatii Str., no. 7-9, room 61, 3400 Cluj Napoca, Romania, director: Ladislau Gyemant, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
  • Key holder and caretaker: Slavuca Ioan, Ilva Mare

The 1857 Jewish population by census was 16, in 1880 was 45, in 1900 was 85, and in 1930 was 109. In May 1944, the Jews were gathered in the ghetto of Bistrita and in June 2-6, 1944 were deported to Auschwitz. The unlandmarked Orthodox cemetery was established in 19th century. Last known burial was 20th century.

The isolated rural/agricultural flat land has no sign or marker. Reached via private property, access is open with permission. A fence with a gate that locks surrounds the site. Approximate pre- and post-WWII size is 50 m x 30 m. 20-100 stones are visible. 1-20 stones are not in original location. Less than 25% of the stones are toppled or broken. Location of stones removed from the cemetery is unknown. Vegetation overgrowth in the cemetery is a seasonal problem preventing access. Water drainage is good all year. No special sections.

The oldest known gravestone dates from 19th century. The 19th and 20th century marble, limestone, and granite flat shaped, smoothed and inscribed, and carved relief decorated gravestones have Hebrew inscriptions. No known mass graves. The national Jewish community owns the property used for orchard. Adjacent properties are a village setting with houses, gardens, orchards, and pastures. Rarely, private Jewish or non-Jewish visitors stop. The never vandalized cemetery maintenance has been clearing vegetation and wall repair. Current care is occasional clearing or cleaning by unpaid individuals. No structures. Weather erosion is a moderate threat.

Cosmina Popa, Tatra Str. no. 4, tel. 064/ 128764, Cluj Napoca, 3400 and Ioana Raiciu, Bd. 21 Decembrie, 13-15, 064/190849, Cluj-Napoca, 3400 visited the site and completed the survey on July 27, 2000 using the following documentation:

  • The General Census of the Population of Transylvania- 1857, Bucharest, Ed. Staff, 1996
  • Wager, Ernest. Historisch- Statistisches- Ortsnamenbuch fur Siebenburgen- Ernst Wagner, Ed. Bohlau, 1977
  • Carmilly-Weinberger, Moshe. Istoria evreilor din Transilvania (1623-1944), Bucharest, 1994 (Romanian version); Budapest, 1995 (Hungarian version)
  • Coriolan Suciu, Dictionar istoric al localităţilor din Transilvania, I-II, Bucharest, 1968.
  • Recensamintul general al populatiei din Transilvania-1930 decembrie 29, I-III, Bucharest, 1938

No interviews. [January 2003]