About the Felshtin Society

Felshtiners who came to the United States established the New York-based First Felshteener Podolier Benevolent Society, which was organized in 1905 and incorporated in January 1906. The society provided relief to survivors of the 1919 pogrom, helping them settle in the U.S., Israel, and Latin America. The society also created and published a Felshtin yizkor (memorial) book in 1937, sponsored social events, a memorial in Dimona, Israel, and maintained the Felshtin section of a Staten Island cemetery. By the late 1970s, many Felshtin-born Americans had passed away, and the Association grew increasingly inactive.

A renewed interest in Jewish history and genealogy emerged in the 1990s. Led by Sid Shaievitz, Michael and the late Phyllis Nevins, Barbara Fischkin, and others, in 1998 the Felshtin group was reborn as the Felshtin Society, dedicated to translating and publishing an English version of the Felshtin yizkor book, restoring the Felshtiner section of the Baron Hirsch cemetery in Staten Island, and providing forums for social and educational interchange.

The Felshtin Society’s first event was highly successful. Drawing more than 100 people, a “reunion” for Felshtiners and Felshtin descendants was held in New York City on February 7, 1999. The event featured a keynote talk by David Roskies, Professor of Jewish Literature at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America.

A second reunion was held in Manhattan on May 3, 2009. The Felshtin Society continues to coordinate several projects, including creating a memorial to pogrom victims in Hvardiyske (formerly Felshtin), collecting photographs and family histories from descendants of Felshtiners, planning a trip to Hvardiyske, and translating the Felshtin yizkor book.

Read more news and activity from the Felshtin Society