SKALAT (Pol. Skałat), town in *Tarnopol district, Ukraine. Formerly within Poland, Skalat passed to Austria in 1772, reverting to Poland between the two world wars. There was a Jewish settlement in the town during the 16th century, and 686 Jews lived there in 1765. The Jewish population increased during the 19th century and numbered 3,256 (55% of the total) in 1890 and 2,791 (49%) in 1900. During the 19th century Ḥasidism had considerable influence in the community, but the Jews in Skalat had to contribute toward the maintenance of the German school, headed by Joseph *Perl, in Tarnopol. As a result of Skalat's proximity to the Russian border, economic life came to a standstill following World War I and many Jews were compelled to leave. In 1921 there were 2,919 Jews (49.1%) living in the town. Between the two world wars they engaged in commerce, retail trade, and crafts. The influence of the national movement and Zionism increased.
Halpern, Pinkas, index; B. Wasiutyński, Ludność źdowska w Polsce w wiekach XIX i XX (1930), 121, 130, 147; M. Balaban, Dzieje Zydł w Galicyi i w Rzeczypospolitej Krakowskiej, 1772–1868 (1914), index; A. Weissbrod, Es Shtarbt a Shtetl: Megiles Skalat (1948).
Sources: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2008 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved.