Introduction

This site is about Keidan, where my grandfather was born. Known today by its Lithuanian name, Kedainiai, it was for centuries an important regional center, a seat of dukes and counts, and a multicultural community long before that term was coined. Until the catastrophic events of the 20th century, Keidan’s Jews lived in relative harmony with their neighbors, including Lithuanians, Poles, Russians, Germans, Belarusians and even Scots. Keidan’s scholars, merchants, and artisans were known far and wide, leaving a legacy – in Yiddish, a yikhes – that continues to inspire the community’s far-flung descendants.

Collected here are memoirs, histories and other material that illuminates the story of this community. The goal is to provide Keidan’s descendants and others with a resource for exploration, enlightenment and understanding.

Click here to read more.

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