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Pascani

PASCANI

PASCANI, town in Jassy province in Moldavia, N.E. Romania. The town may have been founded by Jews, since in 1859, ten years after its foundation, 86 Jews and only five Christians lived there. The ground for the synagogue, the Jewish cemetery (opened in 1870), and the ritual bath (founded in 1872) was granted by the owner of the estate on which the town was established. The locality began to develop after 1879, when the railway from Jassy to Cernauti (Chernovtsy) and Lemberg was built. Pascani was also a railway junction for Bucharest. In 1899 there were 1,862 Jews (14.7% of the total population) in Pascani, six religious schools (ḥadarim), and four synagogues; by the eve of World War i the latter had increased to five. In 1900 a modern primary school was opened by the community at the suggestion of a Christian pharmacist who donated money for this purpose. A second school was opened in 1911 with the aid of the *Jewish Colonization Association. During the Peasants' Revolt of 1907 a Jew was killed and many Jewish houses were plundered. Between 1880 and 1913 proposals were made for changing the status of the town to a city, but these were rejected by parliament on the ground that the situation of the Jews might thereby be improved. By 1910 the Jewish population had decreased to 1,543. Pascani was a ḥasidic center in Romania, as the ẓaddik M.L. Friedman, son of I. Friedman (of the *Ruzhin dynasty), the rabbi of Buhusi, lived there.

In World War ii most Pascani Jews were deported to Bostosam and some to Roman. In 1947 the Jewish population numbered 870, decreasing to 500 in 1950. In 1969 only about 20 Jewish families had remained. There was one synagogue.

bibliography:

pk Romanyah, 195–7; E. Schwarzfeld, Impopularea, reîmpopularea şi întemeierea tîrgurilor şi tîrgutoarelor în Moldova (1914), 40, 41, 98; V. Tufescu, Tirgḏşoarele din Moldova şi importanţa lor economícă (1942), 93, 94, 114, 116, 124, 129, 138.

[Theodor Lavi]

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