PASCANI: Iasi county, Moldavia [ Blăgeşti, Boşteni, Gâsteşti, Lunca and Sodomeni] Print

Pașcani (Paşcani-Târg) is a city on the Siret river in Iaşi judet in the Moldavia region 2002 population was 42,172.47°15' N, 26°44' E, 25 miles SSE of Fălticeni, 35 miles SE of Suceava.  Five villages are administered by the city: Blăgeşti, Boşteni, Gâsteşti, Lunca and Sodomeni. The city derived its name from the estate of the boyar Oană Pașca. It is the city where Mihail Sadoveanu's novel The Place Where Nothing Happened takes place. 1900 Jewish population: 1,862  Rabbi's house. [May 2013]

PASCANI may have been founded by Jews, since in 1859, ten years after its foundation, 86 Jews and only five Christians lived there. The ground for the synagogue, the Jewish cemetery (opened in 1870), and the ritual bath (founded in 1872) was granted by the owner of the estate on which the town was established. The locality began to develop after 1879, when the railway from Jassy to Cernauti (Chernovtsy) and Lemberg was built. Pascani was also a railway junction for Bucharest. In 1899 there were 1,862 Jews (14.7% of the total population) in Pascani, six religious schools(ḥadarim), and four [continue]

YIVO: "Town in the Romanian region of Moldavia (known in Yiddish as Peshkan). In 1845, there were 17 Jewish families living in Paşcani. Numbering 85 persons, they were among the founders of the town and were involved in timber, cereal, and the cattle business. Many Jews from neighboring towns attended fairs in Paşcani; and the extension of roads and the building of railways contributed to its economic development. Jews built a synagogue and a ritual bathhouse, as well as a cemetery./ In 1882, there were 250 Jewish families living in Paşcani, and in 1899 the town had 1,862 Jewish inhabitants (representing 14.7% of the population). In 1910, the number had fallen to 1,543, and in 1930 to 1,481 (13.1%), the result of diminishing business opportunities and of emigration. In 1916, the town had 16 synagogues. Among the rabbis were Yitsḥak Taubes, David Tsevi Rispler, and Ya‘akov Hager. In 1904, Mosheh Yehudah Leib Friedman (1855-1947; the Peshkaner rebbe) established a Hasidic court; his dynasty came to be the main Hasidic center of the old kingdom of Romania. Friedman's father Yitsḥak, of the Ruzhin-Sadagora dynasty, was rebbe of Buhuşi. / In 1895, a local committee of the Ḥibat Tsiyon organization was set up. In the interwar period, various Zionist organizations were active, and in 1913 a committee of the Union of Native Jews was set up (after 1923, it was known as the Union of Romanian Jews). Among Jewish personalities in the town were the Yiddish folk poet Moishe Raf and the Zionist activist Kiva Orenstein. Jewish life in Paşcani was depicted by the Romanian writer Mihail Sadoveanu in several of his novels and short stories. / Relations between Jews and Christians were not always smooth. In 1907, insurgent peasants incited against Jews, and during World War I, some Jews were arrested, unjustified taxes were levied, and several shops were forced to close. In 1931, the mayor's office discriminated against Jewish tradesmen. In 1941, several community notables and leaders were taken hostage. Twelve Jews were deported to Transnistria, while Jews from neighboring villages were forcibly moved to Paşcani. The same year, 240 Jews were forced to perform hard labor in Bessarabia, in road construction and the stone quarries of Bendery (Tighina); another 40 were sent to Măcin (Dobrudja) for the same purpose. In March 1944, bombings destroyed the local railway station, killing 100 Jews. In April 1944, Jews were allowed to flee, and headed for the towns of Fălticeni,Dorohoi, and Botoşani. / After World War II, 870 Jews returned to Paşcani. The Jewish Democratic Committee led the community, and schools were nationalized (1948). The number of Jewish inhabitants then fell as Jews moved to larger cities or emigrated. By 1998, no Jews remained in the city. In 2002, however, an association of Jews originally from Paşcani was established in Petaḥ Tikvah (Israel), and in Bene Berak, the Hasidic court of Paşcani joined with the court from Buhuşi, continuing to be active." Dorian Brisler and Rumelia Koren Brisler, Istoria unui şteitl românesc: Paşcani (Petaḥ Tikvah, Isr., 2002); Theodor Lavi, "Pa'shka'n (Paşcani)," in Pinkas ha-kehilot: Romanyah, vol. 1, pp. 195-197 (Jerusalem, 1969); Baruch Tercatin, Din înțelepciunea Torei şi a hasidismului (Bucharest, 2003). Translated from Romanian by Anca Mircea" [May 2013]

CEMETERY:

47°29' 27°06', Iasi county, Moldavia region: The hillside and flat land at crown of hill is overgrown but contains about 50+ readable stones. I have photographs taken for me by Rick Bercuvitz during his visit. Pascani is in lasi judet, 80 km from Suceava, 100 km from lasi Airport, 385 km distance from Bucharest on the international Route E 85 (Bucharest-Suceava-Siret) and 360 km from Bucharest on the railway. Ellen Sadove Renck,  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . [1998]

The area apparently exports wicker baskets and furniture: http://www.ospascani.ro/english/preview/baskets.html [December 2000]

photo and and photo and map. [May 2013]

US Commission No. ROCE-0313 Map. United States Commission for the Preservation of America's Heritage Abroad 1101 15th Street, NW, Suite 1040, Washington D.C. 20005. Telephone: (202) 254-3824. Fax: (202) 254-3934. E-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . Website: http://www.heritageabroad.gov

PASCANI: Judet Iasi, Moldavia
The cemetery is located at Str. Ion Neculce no. 48, Pascani, judet Iasi, 4715 2644, 196.9 miles N of Bucharest and 95 km. from Iasi. Current town population is over 100,000 with fewer than 10 Jews.

  • Mayor Ratoi Constantin, Bd.Independentei 1, Pascani, judet Iasi
  • The Jewish Community of Iasi, Str. Elena Doamna 15, Iasi-6600, judet Iasi. Phone: 113711; 114414.
  • The Federation of the Jewish Communities of Romania, Sfintu Vineri street, no. 9-11, sect. 3, Bucharest, Romania
  • A.D. Xenopol" Institute of History, Lascar Catargi Street, no. 15, 6600- Iasi Judet Iasi, Moldavia , Romania. Tel. 032/212614; e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . Director: Alexandru Zub.
  • Key holder and caretaker: Chihaia Valentin, bd. Ion Neculce 12, Pascani, judet Pascani

The Jewish population by 1899 census was 660 and in 1930 was 1,490. In 1941, the Jews were deported to Transnistria. The cemetery was established in the 19th century. Last known burial was 1984. The unlandmarked Orthodox cemetery is 500 m. from the congregation that used it. Motca at 4715 2637 also probably used this cemetery.

The ioslated urban flat land and hillside has no sign or marker. Reached by a public road, access is open with permission. A masonry wall and fence with a gate that locks surround the site. Approximate pre- and post-WWII size is 300 X 250 m. 500-5000 stones are visible. 1-20 stones are not in original location. More than 75% 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 the end of the 19th century. The 19th and 20th century marble, granite, limestone, and sandstone gravestones inscriptions are in Hebrew, German, and Romanian. Some have traces of painting on their surfaces, iron decorations or letting, bronze decorations or lettering, and other metallic elements. Some have carved relief-decorated or are double tombstones, obelisks, and sculpted monuments.

The national Jewish community owns the property used for Jewish cemetery only. Adjacent properties are residential and the former synagogue. Occasionally, private Jewish or non-Jewish visitors and local residents stop at the never vandalized cemetery with no maintenance. Current care is regular unpaid caretaker. No structures. Pollution is a moderate threat.

Lucian Nastasă, Clinicilor Street, no. 19, Cluj, Romania, tel. 064/190107. Email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it completed the survey on September 26, 2000 using the following documentation:

  • E.Schwarzfeld, Din istoria evreilor: împopularea, reîmpopularea si întemeierea tîrgurilor si tîrgusoarelor în Moldova, Bucuresti, 1894.
  • Recensamintul general al populatiei Romaniei. 1930, vol.II, Bucuresti, "Monitorul Oficial", 1938
  • N.Sutu, Notiti statistice asupra Moldaviei, Iasi, 1852.
  • George I.Lahovari, Marele dictionar geografic al României, 5 vol., Bucuresti, Edit.Socec, 1899.
  • Recensamintul general al populatiei Romaniei. 1930, vol.II, Bucuresti, "Monitorul Oficial", 1938
  • I.M.Dinescu, Fiii neamului de la 1859 la 1915. Statistica sociala pe întelesul tuturora, Iasi, Institutul de Arte Grafice N.V.Stefaniu, 1920.
  • Leonida Colescu, Analiza rezultatelor recensamîntului general al populatiei României de la 1899, cu o prefata de Sabin Manuila, Bucuresti, Institutul de statistica, 1944.
  • Pinkas Hakehillot, Encyclopedia of Jewish Communities Romania, I-II, Ierusalim, 1980.
  • D. Ivanescu , Populatia evreiasca din orasele si tîrgurile Moldovei între 1774-1832, în "Studia et acta historiae iudaeorum romaniae", II, Bucuresti, Edit.Hasefer, 1997, p.59-65

Lucian Nastasă interviewed Chihaia Valentin, bd.Ion Neculce 12, Pascani, on September 23, 2000. [January 2003]

[UPDATE] Photo of cemetery in Pascani [November 2014]

Last Updated on Saturday, 22 November 2014 23:06