SMELA

SMELA
SMELA (Smiela) city in Kiev district, Ukraine. By 1765 there were 927 Jews in Smela. During the 18th century Smela was subjected to many attacks by haidamacks , and was particularly affected by that of 1768. In 1847 the Jews numbered 1,270, and by 1897 the number increased to 7,475 (50% of the total population). During a pogrom perpetrated in Smela by the bands of Grigoryev in May 1919, over 80 Jews were killed and hundreds of Jewish houses, stores, and workshops were destroyed. The number of Jews in Smela was 5,867 (25.7% of the population) in 1923. Under German occupation during World War II the entire Jewish community was exterminated. In 1959 there were again approximately 1,800 Jews in Smela (4% of the total population). Most left in the 1900s. Within the Jewish community in Smela there is a Jewish community center, a Sunday school, a youth club, and a children's choir called Hatikva.

Encyclopedia Judaica. 1971.

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