VERKNYAYA BYSTRA: Print
VERKNYAYA BYSTRA:     US Commission No. UA06140101
Alternate name: Felso Bisztra (Yiddish), Ober Bistra (German) and Visni Bystry (Hungarian) Ukrainian name: Verkhniy Bystryy and Verchnja Bysteryj. Mizhirasky Region, Zakarpatska Oblast. 48º 37'53N 23º 31'30E, 170 km from Mucachevo and 139 km from Lvov. The cemetery is located at NE, left side R. Bystraya. Present town population is 1,000-5,000 with no Jews.
  • Town officials: Town Executive Council-Katran Mikhail Mikhaylovich [Phone: (03146) 91821].
  • Regional: Mezhgorye Regional Dept. of Culture-Golognyak Vladimir Petrovich [Phone: (03146) 91475]. Zakarpatskaya Oblast Executive Council-Gavorets Vasiliy Stepanovich [Phone: (03122) 33051]. Zakarpatskaya Oblast Dept. of Culture-Gavorets Vasiliy Stepanovich [Phone: (03122) 35373]. Mezhgorye Regional Executive Council-Fedutsya Anton Yuriyevich [Phone: (03146) 91330].
  • Cemetery Keyholder and Caretaker: Elmira Pozhar, Zarichna Str 3, Vyshni Bystry, Mizhirasky Rayon, Zakarpatska Oblast, Ukraine
The earliest known Jewish community was mid-19th century. 1926 Jewish population (census) was 65. Effecting the Jewish Community was 1918 [sic] with last known Hasidic burial 1942. No other towns or villages used this cemetery. The isolated urban hillside by water has no sign or marker, access is open to all. A continuous fence with no gate surrounds the cemetery. 21 to 100 common tombstones, most in original location with 50%-75% toppled, date from 19th century. The cemetery has no special sections. The cemetery contains no known mass graves. Municipality owns Jewish cemetery property. Properties adjacent are residential and R. Bystraya. The cemetery boundaries are unchanged since 1939. Rarely, local residents visit. The cemetery was vandalized during World War II. There is no maintenance. Within the limits of the cemetery are no structures. Vegetation overgrowth is a seasonal problem, preventing access. Water drainage at the cemetery is a seasonal problem. Moderate threat: uncontrolled access, weather erosion, vegetation, vandalism and existing nearby development. Slight threat: pollution and proposed nearby development.
Oks Vladimir Moiseevich of 270065, Odessa, Varnenskaya St., 17D, Apt.52 [Phone: (0482) 665950] visited site on 07/1995. Interviewed was Stets I.Y. of Mezhgorye on 07/1995. Oks completed survey on 21/08/1995. Documentation: Short Jewish Encyclopaedia, v.2, Jerusalem, 1989.
As of August 2003, the cemetery was fenced with a locked gate and a caretaker. Most of the tombstones were upright and Hebrew visible on many. There were about 75 tombstones. Source: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it '; document.write( '' ); document.write( addy_text44765 ); document.write( '<\/a>' ); //--> This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it [October 2003]
UPDATE: Cemetery location: After entering town from North at the Soviet monument, take direct road to the left (east) 300 feet, then dirt road to left about 50 feet; site is on left side.     Jewish population before WWII was about 100 families. The site is about 0.1 mile from the congregation that used the unlandmarked site. The isolated rural agricultural and wooded site on a hillside by water has no sign or marker. Reached by turning directly off a public road, access is open to all via a continuous fence and gate that locks. The 2000 sq ft cemetery has 75 stones, some not in original location and less than 25% toppled or broken. Vegetation is not a problem.
The flat shaped flat stones with carved relief and double tombstones with traces of painting on their surfaces have either Hebrew or Yiddish inscription. No known mass graves. The municipality owns the site used only as a Jewish cemetery. Properties adjacent are agricultural and residential. Rarely, organized individual tours and private Jewish or non-Jewish visitors stop. Past care of the cemetery includes re-erecting stones, clearing vegetation, and fixing gate by local non-Jewish residents. Current care is a regular caretaker paid by visitor contribution. No structures. No threats.
Karin Wandrei, 3851 Ridgewood Road, Willits, California, 707-459-6474, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it completed the survey on 23 Oct 2003 after her visit on 3 Aug 2003. She interviewed the caretaker and his wife, villagers, and her mother, who grew up there.