ALEKSANDRIYA (originally Becha), town in Kirovograd district, Ukraine. The first Jews settled in Aleksandriya at the end of the 18th century. In 1864 they numbered 2,474, and in 1897, 3,735 (26% of the total population). In 1910 the community had five synagogues, a talmud torah and a communal school, and 11 ḥadarim with 230 pupils. The main occupation of the Jews in Aleksandriya was garment manufacturing. In a pogrom on April 23, 1882, Jewish shops and homes were pillaged. On the Day of Atonement of 1904 (September 6), three Jews were killed and several injured in a pogrom. During the civil war of 1919–20, the Jews in Aleksandriya endured great suffering, Aleksandriya being the headquarters of Ataman Grigoryev, leader of the Ukrainian pogrom bands. They were also attacked by Denikin's "White" army. In 1926 the Jewish population in Aleksandriya numbered 4,595 (23% of the total). During the Soviet period most of the Jews worked as artisans in cooperatives. The central Chabad synagogue was still operating in the early 1930s. The Jewish population declined to 1,420 persons in 1939 (total population 19,755). Aleksandriya was occupied by the Germans on August 6, 1941. They murdered 463 males on September 19, and over 300 on August 29. In all, 2,572 were murdered, including Jews from the surrounding area.
E. Tcherikower, Di Ukrainer Pogromen in 1919 (1965); B. West, Naftulei Dor, 1 (1947), 133–6. ADD. BIBLIOGRAPHY: PK Ukrainah, s.v.
[Shmuel Spector (2nd ed.)]
Source: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2008 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved.