Bobruisk District Historical Economic Summaries

Provided by
The Minsk Historical Genealogy Group
Oleg Perzashkevich, Director

City of Bobriusk

Bobruisk before 1917


V-VI centuries A. D. - a small rural settlement of Balts existed on the same place, where Bobruisk was founded later.

XIV century - Bobruisk was founded as a possession of Minsk Prince Skirgaylo son of Godemin. In that time’s records its names were: Bobrovsk, Bobruesk and Bobrusek.

1502 - Crimean and Akkerman (South Steppes of Ukraine) Tatars attacked Bobruisk and robbed it. They were defeated by the troops of Duke Semen Olelkovich (a military commander of Great Lithuanian Princedom).

Early XVI century - after Tatars invasion a castle was constructed in Bobruisk.

1508 - Bobruisk was attacked by the troops of the Duke Mikhail Glinsky (a leader of anti-Roman Catholic rebel in Great Lithuanian Princedom). They were defeated by the troops of Polish King Sighizmund I Old.

1506-1793 - a shtetle in Rechitsa District of Minsk Province of Great Lithuanian Princedom.

1511 - King of Poland and Great Lithuanian Prince Sighizmund I Old awarded Bobruisk with a privilege to pay taxes directly to the State Treasury without any local mediation.

XVI century - Jewish population appeared.

1615-1627 - local magnate and high military official of Rech Pospolitaya Peter Tryzna constructed here a Roman Catholic cathedral of St. Peter and Paul and founded a residence of Jesuits. Jesuits founded a school.

1648 - Bobruisk was captured by Cossack brigade of colonel Poddubitsky (one of Bogdan Khmelnitsky’s troops commander). Cossacks stayed there for about a year.

1649 Cossacks were defeated by state troops of Great Lithuanian Princedom under the commanding of Lithuanian Hetman (supreme military official) Duke Yanush Radzivill. During the final battle the old castle was burned away. The Cossack leaders were executed, but local population was not punished, because the people agreed to open the gates of the city at once after Yanush Radzivill proposed to do it.

1651 - Bobruisk Jesuit Residence was destroyed temporally.

1665 - Bobruisk was captured and robbed by Cossacks.

1780s - any activity of Bobruisk Jesuits was stopped. Jesuit schools were substituted initially with the "academic", later with District (both 3-years state) ones.

1788 - the Rechitsa District Court was moved to Bobruisk.

Since 1793 - in Russian Empire.

Since 1795 - a District Town of Lithuanian Province.

1801-1917 - a District Town of Minsk Province.

1810 - a fortress was constructed. It had 14,000 soldiers as a garrison, and was a significant strategic object.

1812 - Bobruisk fortress was beseiged by troops of general Dombrovsky (Napoleon commander).

1853-1863 - a secondary state school existed in Bobruisk.

1826 - Orthodox Church of St. Luka was built in wood by local believers.

1829 - Orthodox Church of St. Sophia was built in wood by colonel Rosen-Mark.

1855 - Orthodox Cathedral of St. Nicholas with a shelter was erected of wood by state.

Vital Statistics

Date Jews Non-Jews Comments % Total Pop.
XVI century Jewish population appeared
1766 359 No info Male adults only No info
1861 8,866 No info Both sexes No info
1880 17,935 19,302 Both sexes 48.2%
1897 20,760 14,060 Both sexes 59.6 %
1909 39,816 Both sexes No info
1913 41,300 Both sexes about 49%
1917 54,675 Both sexes No info

Jewish Life

In 1673 the Sejm (Parliament) of Rech Pospolitaya (federal state of Polish Kingdom and Great Lithuanian Princedom) declared, that Jewish community of Bobruisk should pay annually 40 zloty as a post tax.

On May 6, 1702 the Tribunal (Supreme Court) of Rech Pospolitaya conferred Bobruisk Jews to "infamia" - deprivation them of status of citizens - for the Jews had not paid the post tax for two previous years.

After the construction of Bobruisk fortress on February, 1812, Jews were prohibited to have any real estate there.

In 1880 in Bobruisk there were:

  1. synagogue;
  2. Jewish school;
  3. Jewish hospital.

In the 2nd half of the XIXth century all local trade was under Jewish control.

In 1896 there were the following Jewish institutions in Bobruisk:

  1. synagogue (Rabbi Vilensky Yakov son of Samuil);
  2. 25 praying houses;
  3. Jewish hospital (30 beds):
    • Doctor: FEYERTAG Isidor son of Samuil
    • Supervisors:
      • Ayzenshtat Khaym son of Isaak
      • Estrin Isaak son of Izrael
      • Etinger Berka son of Leyba
      • Galbershtat Ghirsh son of Meyer
      • Golant Yakov son of Borukh
      • Katsnelson Nison son of Osip
      • Margolin Osip son of Mikhel
      • Margolin Zalman son of Simon
      • Matlin Zalman son of Khatskel
      • Rabinovich Bous son of Isaak
      • Sliozberg Leyba son of Iosel
      • Zalkind Mordukh son of Vulf

    During that year there were 447 patients in the hospital. 396 of them were cured, 33 died, 18 stayed for the next year. Annual cost of maintenance of the hospital was 6161 roubles 6 kopecks.

  4. primary 1-year Jewish school: Director: ZINGOL Osip son of Elya Honourable supervisor: ESTRIN Isaak son of Izrael Assistant of teacher: FRIDLYAND Shlema son of David Teacher: KAGAN Felix son of Yefroim Doctor: FEYRTAG Isaak son of Samuil
  5. private 2-year Jewish school for women with primary class (mistress LAZAREVA Khana);
  6. private 2-year Jewish school for women with primary class (mistress YAKESBERG Sara);
  7. private 1-year Jewish public school (master BASIN Aron);
  8. Talmud-Torah (Chief Teacher ZINGOL Osip son of Elya).

In 1896 in Bobruisk:
432 boys and 188 girls were born, 240 men and 114 women died.

Economic Review

Traditional activities of local Jewish population were trade with grain, agricultural products, vodka and cloth making. Since early time Berezina and Bobruyka rivers were main roads for Bobruisk inhabitants. And the most famous feature of Bobruisk were beavers (animals). That animal’s Slavic name "Bobr" gave the names to the river Bobruyka and the town itself. But as a result of hunting, beavers were almost eliminated by the end of the XIXth century.

In the time of the Great Lithuanian Princedom, Bobruisk was a possession of Dukes Radzivills, then Gashtold and Tryzna noble families. It reached its maximal prosperity in the 1st half of the XVIIth century.

According to the Register for 1620 in Bobruisk there were:

That was why in 1639 Bobruisk was presented to Polish Queen Tsetsyliya-Renata. After Khmelnitsky uprising (1648-1651) and the wars between Rech Pospolitaya and Muscovy Russia (1654-1667) the town fell into decay.

During Russian principality vodka trade was under state hard control and became less popular among Jewish businessmen. But Russian authorities did a lot to develop the region because of military and fiscal reasons mostly. First of all, old communications were reconstructed there:

In XIX, because of development of the All-Russian Market, new types of communications appeared there:

By 1880 in Bobruisk there were:

The town occupied 8,760 hectares.

At the end of the XIXth century Bobruisk fortress lost its significance and was transformed into a warehouse.

In 1897 Bobruisk harbour exported 25,600 tons of wood. In 1900 the harbour total turnover was 2,400 tons (mostly wood, then grain and salt from the southern provinces of the Empire).

In 1900, Bobruisk railway station turnover was over 37,600 tons (mostly wood).

By 1900, in Bobruisk there were:

By 1900, the largest enterprises in Bobruisk were:

Other enterprises:

Total number of workers: 304 persons. Total annual turnover was 576,000 roubles.

In 1900 the town income was over 73,000 roubles.

At the end of the XIXth century the maximal economical damage to Bobruisk was made by fire. In 1896 the damage was 22,910 roubles. Reasons:

  1. negligence (30.8%);
  2. defective stove construction (21.8%);
  3. arson (13.5%);
  4. lightning strikes (4.8%);
  5. unknown (29.1%).

Annual maintenance cost of antifire brigade was 4,324 roubles 56 kopecks. In the same year Bobruisk citizens bought 1,000 goose carcasses and paid 550 roubles for hunted birds.

In the early XX century in Bobruisk there were:

  1. 19 factories and plants (total number of workers - 582 persons):
    • cast-iron-foundry;
    • timber goods;
    • brick;
    • vodka and yeast;
    • butter;
    • soap;
    • tobacco;
    • furniture.
  2. several mills;
  3. 191 crafts workshops (1,077 craftsmen);
  4. 3,000 buildings (172 of them were made of stone).

In 1914 in Bobruisk there were 23 factories and plants (total annual turnover was 1 million roubles). But the main goods were still wood and grain.

Here is the list of major business and trade enterprises of Bobruisk and the Subdistrict for 1902.

Name of owner Type of business Address Religion
ACHIKOVSKY Ghirsh son of Kivel Fish store Muravyevskaya st. Jewish
ALTSHUL Leyvik-Itsko son of Arya Leather factory (11 workers) Shosseynaya st. Jewish
ASHPIZA Falka daughter of Movsha Grocery store 2nd Slutskaya st. Jewish
Barbash David son of Movsha Fabrics trade store Muravyevskaya st. Jewish
Belenky Leyba son of Mordukh Furniture shop Semenovskaya st. Jewish
Chernyak Zelik son of Leyba Herring store Olkhovskaya st. Jewish
Dayun Meshel son of Itsko Fabrics trade store Muravyevskaya st. Jewish
Dukhon David son of Mordko Herring store Bazarnaya square Jewish
FRIDLYAND Ghenya Publishing house No info Jewish
Ghelfer Nokhim Photo shop No info Jewish
Gherchikov Mordukh son of Zalman Grain & bread store Muravyevskaya st. Jewish
GHETSEV Mordukh son of Vulf Wood processing factory (24 workers) Krivoy kryuk Jewish
GHINZBURG Yakov Book store No info Jewish
GOLANT Yankel son of Borukh Grocery store Bazarnaya square Jewish
Goldin Ghirsh son of Shevel Leather store 1st Slutskaya st. Jewish
Golodets Mordukh son of Kiva Fabrics trade store Muravyevskaya st. Jewish
Grudonskaya Sophya daughter of Maxim Sausages store Opermanovskaya st. Orthodox
Gurvich Simon son of Dovid Ironware store Muravyevskaya st. Jewish
Irgeher Yankel son of Iosel Flour store Muravyevskaya st. Jewish
Iserlis Govsey son of Kiva & Ghendman Iosel son of Leyba Leather store Romanovskaya st. Jewish
Kagan Abram son of Bentsian Fur shop Pushkinskaya st. Jewish
Katsenbogin Zimel son of Abram Furniture shop Shosseynaya st. Jewish
KATSNELSON Paulina daughter of Moisey Pharmaceutical store Shosseynaya st. Jewish
KATSNELSON Paya-Brayna daughter of Movsha Wood processing factory (engine - 50 h. p., 60 workers) Berezinsky forshtat Jewish
Katsnelson Shevel son of Shmuylo Flour store Shosseynaya st. Jewish
KHURIN Ghershon Book store No info Jewish
Kitain Bentsian son of Abram Gold & silver shop Muravyevskaya st. Jewish
Kleynerman Iosel son of Dovid Bank Shosseynaya st. Jewish
Kostelyansky Gheshel son of Mordukh Fabrics trade store Muravyevskaya st. Jewish
Kozlin Khaya daughter of Khaym Photo shop Rodionovskaya st. Jewish
KREYNIN Idel son of Menakhem Publishing house (7 workers) 2nd Slutskaya st. Jewish
Kutner Movsha son of Srol Iron trade store Olkhovskaya st. Jewish
Lapidus Iosel son of Borukh Flour store Muravyevskaya st. Jewish
LIKHAREVSKY Fedor son of Gavriil / renter SVENTSITSKY Ilya son of Kazimir) Pharmacy No info Russian / Russian
Livshits Ilya son of Khaym Haberdashery store Muravyevskaya st. Jewish
Livshits Itska son of Yankel Transport agency Shosseynaya st. Jewish
Livshits Khaym son of Aron Haberdashery store Muravyevskaya st. Jewish
LOZINSKAYA Rokhlya Book store No info Jewish
Lozinsky Ghirsh son of Mordukh Grocery store Fortress Jewish
LOZINSKY Yevel son of Mordukh Brick factory (63 workers) No info Jewish
LUBETSKY Nakman son of Ghesel Beer factory Krivoy kruk Jewish
Margolin Khasha daughter of Mordukh Grocery store Bazarnaya square Jewish
Margolin Zalman son of Simon Flour store Shosseynaya st. Jewish
Marinbakh Khaym’s son of Ayzik legal successors Gold & silver shop Shosseynaya st. Jewish
Matskevich Nokhim son of Niftolel Fabrics trade store Muravyevskaya st. Jewish
MATYSKEVICH V. & GONESTY R. Wood processing factory (engine - 28 h. p., 12 workers) Novoshosseynaya st. No info
MENDELSEN Samuil son of Mark Pharmacy No info Jewish
Mirkovich Yefroim son of Aron Fabrics trade store Muravyevskaya st. Jewish
Nager Zelik son of Kopel Haberdashery store Muravyevskaya st. Jewish
Nagherov Zelik son of Kopel Fabrics trade store 2nd Slutskaya st. Jewish
Nemets Yankel son of Movsha Iron trade store Bazarnaya square Jewish
NEZABYTOVSKY Karl son of Konstantin & BULGAK Edgar son of Ignaty Alcohol distillery Staro-Slutskaya st. Roman Catholic
Nisenbaum Fishel son of Ghirsh Grocery store Shosseynaya st. Jewish
OREL COMMERCE BANK Bank office No info No info
Peymer Simon son of Meyer Grocery store Bazarnaya square J ewish
Pines Yankel-Shmuylo son of Nevakh Fabrics trade store Muravyevskaya st. Jewish
Pruzhinins Kalman & Elya sons of Zalman Brick factory (13 workers) Near cemetery Jewish
Rabinovich Abram son of Leyba Ironware store Bazarnaya square Jewish
RABINSKY Khaym son of Yuda Dishes store Muravyevskaya st. Jewish
Ravikovichs Aron & Benyamin sons of Borukh Fabrics trade store Muravyevskaya st. Jewish
Raykhinshteyn Khaym-Izrael son of Abram Fabrics trade store Bazarnaya square Jewish
Rendel Shimen son of Yudko Photo shop Shosseynaya st. Jewish
ROSENBERG Ghirsh son of Iosel Brick factory (50 workers) Berezinsky forshtat Jewish
Rozovsky Berko son of Mordukh Flour store Olkhovskaya st. Jewish
Saltsevsky Movsha son of Yankel Herring store 1st Slutskaya st. Jewish
Saltsovsky Samuil son of Yankel Grocery store Bazarnaya square Jewish
Savitsky Anton son of Vasiliy Grocery store Fortress Orthodox
SHABSHAEVICH Mordukh Book store No info Jewish
SHABSHALEVICH Mordukh-Leyba son of Itsko Pharmaceutical store Shosseynaya st. Jewish
Shapiro Berko son of Elya Grocery store 1st Slutskaya st. Jewish
SHMULEVICH Elya son of Berko & MAKHTIN Leyzer son of Zalman Tobacco factory (9 workers) Staro-Slutskaya st. Jewish
SHMULEVICH Elya son of Berko Fish store Muravyevskaya st. Jewish
Shostak Yermiya son of Osher Oats trade Bazarnaya square Jewish
SLOBODIN Leyba Book store No info Jewish
SOKHOR Sholom son of Meyer Lithographic publish house Politseyskaya st. Jewish
SOLOVEYCHIK Ghitlya Book store No info Jewish
SORKIN Mendel son of Movsha Pharmaceutical store Muravyevskaya st. Jewish
Stison David son of Noson Tobacco store Shosseynaya st. Jewish
STISON Shlioma son of Dovid Tobacco factory (9 workers) Shosseynaya st. Jewish
Tanezer Lazar son of Berko Gold & silver shop Muravyevskaya st. Jewish
TSYNKIN Abram Book store No info Jewish
VILENSKY Izrael son of Zalman Butter factory (engine - 35 h.p., 13 workers) Shosseynaya st. Jewish
VILNO PRIVATE COMMERCE BANK Bank office No info No info
VINOKUR David Book store No info Jewish
VINOKUR David son of Itsko Pharmaceutical store Olkhovskaya st. Jewish
volfson Ghirsh son of Shlema Fabrics trade store Shosseynaya st. Jewish
VOLNER R. Book store No info Jewish
Voronov Aron son of Ovsey Haberdashery store Muravyevskaya st. Jewish
YAKOBSON Pinkhus son of Shmuil Paper boxes workshop Lagheranya slobodka Jewish
YAKUBOVICH Fishel son of Abram Vodka & Yeast factory (engine - 17 h.p., 30 workers) Rozenmarkovskaya st. Jewish
YANKOVSKY’s legal successors / renter GARKAVY Nakman son of Borukh Pharmacy No info Russian / Jewish
Yukhved Zalman son of Idel Fur shop Olkhovskaya st. Jewish
Zagorsky Konstantin son of Ivan Grocery store Bazarnaya square Orthodox
ZAGORULKO Martyn son of Feder Wheels workshop Muravyevskaya st. Orthodox
Zarubo Adrian son of Alexander Sausages store Bazarnaya square Orthodox

General cultural information

In 1880 in Bobruisk there were:

In 1896 new institutions in Bobruisk:

In 1902 in Bobruisk there were 16 different educational institutions (primary and secondary).

Copyright 1997-1998 Oleg Perzashkevich
Reproduced for the web with permission. All rights reserved. Any use of this material is prohibited without permission from:

Minsk Historical Genealogy Group
Republic of Belarus
Minsk - 07, Zhukovskogo 9-2-190
Phone: 375-17-2240560
e-mail: minskhist@yahoo.com

Bobruisk Interest Group, Don Mopsick, Shammes
Updated 9/2/99

Content last updated Friday, May 01, 2015 at 07:17 AM Mountain Daylight Time