Skip to main content

Territorial Collection, Poland 1

Identifier: RG 116-Poland 1

Scope and Content Note

The Territorial Collection Poland 1 consists of miscellaneous materials that are arranged topically, and which relate to Jewish life in pre-World War II Poland. The Territorial Collection-Poland 1 is but a portion of the greater Territorial Collection, which incorporates materials that are relevant to over 42 different countries and geographical regions. The Poland 1 Collection precedes the Poland 2 and 3 Collections, which pertain respectively to the Holocaust and post-World War II periods.

The Territorial Collection Poland 1 consists of personal letters, post cards, and official correspondence (much of which pertains to landsmanshaft societies in the United States), memoirs, speeches, leaflets, and newspaper clippings. The following is a general overview of the different categories of materials contained within the Territorial Collection Poland 1: (1) Yiddish press/publishing house and literary publications (e.g., Achiasaf Publishing House, “Unzer yugend,” “Grininke beymelekh”), (2) Political organizations (e.g., Jewish community and Sejm elections, Polish Socialist Party, Folkist Party, Bund, Non-Party Bloc, He-halutz, Agudas Israel), (3) Jewish education (e.g., Tarbut, TSYSHO, Yehudiah, Medem, vocational schools), (4) Religious institutions and practices (e.g., ritual slaughter, Vaad-Hayeshivot, Talmud Torah, synagogue record books), (5) Unions and clubs (e.g., Jewish Teachers’ Union, Yiddish Writers’ Union) (6) Jewish aid societies (e.g., healthcare, orphanages, children’s homes, hospitals, gemiles khesed, khevra kadisha, Medem Sanatorium), (7) Reports about antisemitism and literature of an antisemitic nature (e.g., materials pertaining to the Morgenthau Commission that investigated the pogroms of 1918-1919, cartoons, caricatures).


  • Creation: 1749-1954
  • Creation: Majority of material found within 1919-1939

Language of Materials

Yiddish, Polish, English with some German, Russian, Ukrainian.

Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open to the public. Permission to publish part or parts of the collection must be obtained in writing from the YIVO Archives.

Conditions Governing Use

There may be some restrictions on the use of the collection. For more information, contact:

YIVO Institute for Jewish Research, Center for Jewish History, 15 West 16th Street, New York, NY 10011 email:


5.5 Linear Feet


The Territorial Collection Poland 1 is comprised of documents that were amassed at the YIVO in New York City. The Collection is of a mixed provenance and fragmentary nature. The commonality between the documents contained within this collection is that they all pertain to Jews in Poland prior to 1939. Documents of earlier years are also included. Collection consists of letters, essays, reports, correspondence, and clippings which pertain to the political situation, economic conditions, and cultural activities of Polish Jews.


The collection consists of a single series arranged by topic. Materials are grouped in folders either by common locality name or topic. Locality names are written in Polish (e.g., Chęciny—as opposed to Khentchin in Yiddish).

Custodial History

Various donors.

Proccessing Information

Collection was proccesses by Arnie Scribner in 1976. Additional proccessing was done by Rivka Schiller in 2005.

Guide to the Territorial Collection, Poland, 1749-1954, bulk 1919-1939, RG 116-Poland 1
Processed by Arnie Scribner in 1976. Additional processing was done by Rivka Schiller in 2005
© 2006
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Description is in English.
Additional processing, editing, encoding and online posting of the finding aid was carried out thanks to a grant from the Gruss Lipper Family Foundation.

Repository Details

Part of the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research Repository

15 West 16th Street
New York NY 10011 United States