Mena

Mena (Polish), Myena (German), Мена (Ukrainian), Мена – Mena (Russian)

Mena is a historic town located in Chernihiv region of northern Ukraine, center of Mena district. The city’s estimated population is 12,900 (as of 2005).

Mena became a part of Russia Empire in 1667, in XIX – beginning of XX century it was center of Mena Yezd of Chernigov Gubernia.

Beginning

Records from the early 19th century describe the general population in Mena at around 6,000 people. The Jewish population of this time is not mentioned but reference is made to the existence of a synagogue and another Jewish house of worship. According to the 1897 census, 6,277 people lived in Mena, more than a quarter of whom were Jews.

Mena in XXI century. Photo from <a href="http://http://foto-planeta.com/">foto-planeta.com</a>
Mena in XXI century. Photo from foto-planeta.com

The main activities of the Jewish population in the 19th and early 20th centuries were in trade and crafts. In 1902, the rabbi in Mena was Itshok- Isaac Lurvin (1865 -?) and in 1904-06, Shneur-Zalman Ginzburg (1876 -?).

The business directory of 1903 lists few names of Jewish entrepreneurs from Mena:
Bank: Elyashberg Evsey Vulf.
Factory: Zak Mordehai Girsh.
Drugstore: Lihterman Yacob Mordk.
Grocery stores: Gelberg Yankel Kalm., Levyant Nahim Leib.,
Tin: Gordinova Minya Zalm., Rahmilevich Simha Hatzk.,
Haberdashery: Narinskiy Manya Mois.,
Fish and kerosine: Ratnet Sim. Evs.
Tobacco: Ufa Moses Leib., Futer Mord. Dav.,Shtein Isaak Shloim., Goldshtein Ezra Aaron., Elyashberg Evsey Vulf.
Grain: Faitelson Lipm. Yank.