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M O S K V A, R U S S I A
M O S C O W - M O S K V E

Latitude, Longitude: 55°45' N, 37°35' E

Alternate names: Moskva [Rus], Moscow [Eng], Moskwa [Pol], Moskau [Ger], Maskva [Lith], Maskava [Latv], Moskve [Yid], Moscova [Rom], Moscou

This page is dedicated to the memory of Alexander Lifshitz, his wife Malke Sheftel and his son Morris Liff (b. Moscow 1879, d. Boston 1934)

3Sisters Picture
“The Three Sisters” (Anton Chekov); cartoon by Brinton Turkle, 1940, Chicago. Moscow’s domed spires gleam in the distance while Olga, Masha and Irina beg to return to their beloved city. (Illustration property of the author)
Welcome to the Moskva Kehila and to genealogical research at JewishGen!

Moscow is the present capital of the Russian Federation; it was the capital of Russia from the 1600s until 1712 (when St. Petersburg took over the role) and was again capital under the Soviets from 1918 to 1991.

Under the Tsars, Jews required special permission to live in the city, so the community was quite small compared to those within the Pale of Settlement. In 1918 the Soviet government lifted these residence restrictions and the Jewish community grew rapidly. Before the major wave of Jewish emigration that began in the 1980s, close to 175,000 Jews lived in Moscow, a number that had fallen to 53,145 by 2010. Despite those losses, the internal migration of Jews from the eastern provinces of the former Empire continues to maintain Moscow's status as the largest Jewish community in Russia.

On this site you will find a detailed history of Jewish Moscow, interesting stories from families with Moscow roots, suggestions for background reading, links to important resources as well as tips for tracing your own family's Moscow history.

This KehilaLink is very much a work in progress. As Nancy Holden and Phyllis Kramer emphasize in the research courses they offer through JewishGen, "sharing information is crucial." If you have advice about obtaining original Moscow records, a story, a map or family photos you are willing to post, please don't be shy about contacting us so we can share your information. Together, we can make sure that those who have gone before us will not be forgotten!

Carola Murray-Seegert
Pictures, Postcards
and Maps
Family Stories
from Moscow
and Links

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Compiled by Carola Murray-Seegert (Updated August 2012)
Copyright © 2012 Carola Murray-Seegert Ph.D.
Webpage Design by Jonny Joseph