Families of Troškūnai (Trashkun)


Kovnovich family

alternate spelling: Kovnovitz

▶  See also • Escape from Trashkun in 1941, a memoir by Shmuel Kovnovich
Interview with Shmuel & Hasia Kovnovich by Dov Levin (1965)

The earliest known member of the Kovnovich family is Getzl Kovnovich (1834-1905), son of Peysach. Getzl's sister Gitl (Gutl) Kovnovich (1835-1907) married Yankl Meyer Glezer. Getzl Kovnovich married Rivka Leya, and they had five children:

Moshe-Itzik Kovnovich

Moshe-Itzik Kovnovich  (enlarge)


Shlomo Kovnovich (right) with wife Sora
(seated) and son Shmuel (~1928)  (enlarge)

Avrom Kovnovich

Avrom Kovnovich

During World War I, the family of Shlomo Kovnovich, along with tens of thousands of other Jewish families, were forcibly expelled to the East. While in exile, Shlomo's young sons Zelman Yosl and Leybe died of typhoid fever. The family returned to Trashkun after the war. Avrom became a chalutz (Zionist pioneer) and went to Palestine in 1930. There he played violin in the Palestine Orchestra, which later became the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra. Chana Liba went to St. Petersburg at age 11 and stayed with her maternal aunts and uncles. She too was musically gifted, but she decided to become a physician. Shmuel escaped to Russia at the start of World War II. (Read his account of his escape and a 1965 interview about his experiences during the war years.) After the war he returned to Vilna (Vilnius) and married Hasia Dlot. They moved to Israel with their children in 1957.

Shmuel Kovnovich was a barber in Trashkun (Troškūnai) before the war. In an interview in Jerusalem in 1965, speaking in Yiddish, he recalled the tense atmosphere in Lithuania during the Soviet rule of 1940 and how he fled by foot to central Russia via Vitebsk and Polotsk, where he worked in a sugar factory as part of the Trud Armia (Labor Army).

— Dov Levin, Historian's Testimony: A Collection of Oral History
, Magnes Press, Jerusalem (2013)

Shmuel Kovnovich

Shmuel Kovnovich (1928)

Remembering Shmuel Kovnovich:

“My father was a learned, educated and very talented man. The whole family—Getzl, his brothers, sons—were klezmer players. They all played the violin and entertained Lithuanians, Poles and Jews at ‘simhas.’ Very often my father would pick up his violin, a gift from Berl Glezer in Vilnius after the war, and play Yiddish and Russian popular songs.   (see also)

“My father had a talent for writing prose and poetry and he was fluent in many languages: Yiddish, Hebrew, Russian, Lithuanian and Polish. He was an avid reader of Yiddish, Hebrew and Russian literature and he always read it aloud so that his wife Hasia (who was a factory worker since the age of twelve and had little schooling) and his two children could enjoy and learn to appreciate the great art of many famous writers and poets.”

— Sonia Kovnovich Mandel, daughter of Shmuel Kovnovich

Shmuel & Itzhak, Vilnius 1957

Shmuel Kovnovich (right) with Itzhak
Konkurovich in Vilnius (1957)  (enlarge)

Shmuel & Itzhak, Vilnius 1957

Shmuel Kovnovich (right) with Itzhak Konkurovich
at the monument at Pajuoste (1957)  (enlarge)

Shmuel, 1970s

Kovnovich family, Vilnius (1953)

DOCUMENT  Avrom Kovnovich application for internal passport (1927)
DOCUMENT  Shmuel Kovnovich application for internal passport (1927)
MEMOIR  Shmuel Kovnovich's account of his escape in 1941
INTERVIEW Oral history interview with Shmuel Kovnovich and his wife Hasia (1965)
DIARY Appreciation of Shlomo Kovnovich's music-making by Esther Selman Solomon (1926)
PHOTO Moshe-Itzik Kovnovich
PHOTOS Brothers Shmuel and Avrom Kovnovich (1927 or earlier)
PHOTO Shmuel Kovnovich (1928)
PHOTO Shlomo Kovnovich with wife Sora (Brafman) and son Shmuel (~1928)
PHOTO Shmuel Kovnovich among group in front of synagogue in Trashkun (late 1930s)
PHOTO Shmuel and Hasia (Dlot) Kovnovich with children (Vilnius, 1953)
PHOTO Shmuel Kovnovich playing violin for his granddaughter (Jerusalem)
PHOTOS Shmuel (Shmulke) Kovnovich appears in Trashkuner youth (1930s),
Zionist pioneers (1930), and Reunion in Israel (1987)

(back to top)

Send us corrections, additional information, photos, or a link to your family's genealogy site.

KehilaLinks Directory   |   JewishGen Home page