The back & front covers. The German reads "Pass", which is a
shortened form of "Passport". The seal is of the "German Administration
in the Region of the Superior Executive Officer East"
The German on the left side:
1. The passport is to be carried at all times. Whosoever is
encountered without a passport, or with someone else's, or with a falsified
passport will face 10 years' imprisonment, or 5 years with mitigating circumstances.
2. Loss of a passport must be reported to the issuing office within
24 hours. If such a loss is not reported within 24 hours, there
will be a prison sentence of 5 years, or in the case of mitigating circumstances,
a fine of 6000 marks.
3. In case of death, the passport must be returned to the issuing
office within 3 days.
Presumeably the Hebrew portion conveys the same message.
The right side:
German Administration in the Region of the Superior Executive
[purple stamp] Administrative Region Vilnius
1. District: Merecz
2. Passport number: 29323
Place of Residence: Merecz The consensus among
4 kind respondents on Belarus SIG is that this is the most likely reading
of the town name, and that another name for the town is Merkine. ShtetlSeeker
locates 2 Merkine [54 deg 28" N, 24 deg 28" E & 54 deg 10 min N, 24 deg
10 min E. One is SW of Vilnius, the other SE. It's obvious
from the fact that the coordinates differ only in 18 min of latitude &
longitude, that they're not all that far from each other. Neither are
they all that far from Nowy Dwor; so he could have been living in either
3. Address: Kleinstr. 1 [That's "Small" or "Little" Street
#1; probably Germanized from the original language]
4. Given & surname: Benzal ALBERT [probably Germanized
5. Date of birth:
Or approximate age: 26 years
6. Place of birth: Nowy Dwor
The left side reads:
7. Religion: Jewish [This suggests that,
the pre-printed Hebrew notwithstanding, the requirement was not restricted
to Jews, and that the 2nd language was used so that the person & immediate
community could understand the requirements].
8. Occupation: [black]smith
The right side reads:
Height: 1 meter 68 cm
Prominent scars, warts, beauty marks, moles, flaps of skin, tatoos and
Two joints of the right index finger are missing
Administrivia regarding issuance
The passport was issued at Merecz, on 9 July 1916. It
was to be signed either by the Mayor of the issuing community or 2 witnesses.
The final item is the seal of the issuing District/Region.