The first Jewish settlers came to Bukaczowce (Ukr. Bukachivitsi, Букачівці) in the 18th century. The size of the community was steadily growing in the 19th century, reaching its peak in 1900 with 1,216 people (50% of the total population of the town). However, following the outbreak of World War I and the ensuing mass emigration, the community decreased by nearly a half. The interwar period saw the emergence of the Zionist movement in the town, with its activists establishing a local Hebrew school. The cultural life of the Jewish population was thriving.

In the years 1939–1941, Bukachivitsi came under Soviet occupation, which led to the collapse of the previous model of life, based largely on private trade and crafts.

Germans entered the town on 3 June 1941. The community was exterminated in three subsequent “actions”: on 21 September 1942 (Yom Kippur), 26 September 1942, and 19 January 1943. Almost all prisoners of the ghetto in Bukachivitsi were driven to the Nazi German extermination camp in Belzec.

Bibliography

  • “Bukachivtsi” [in:] The Encyclopedia of Jewish Life before and during the Holocaust, eds. S. Spector, G. Wigoder, New York 2001, vol. I, p. 221.
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