Greetings on Lithuanian Independence Day! Greetings on Lithuanian Independence Day!

A class of Šeduva Jewish Primary School, 1921. Courtesy of Inbal Levi Raz.

Greetings on Lithuanian Independence Day!

In the 1980s, writer Grigory Kanovich met with the Litvaks in Israel. Upon parting, the writer shared, "Those elderly Jews - plowers and sowers with weather-beaten faces, as if having agreed, stood up, and - you won't believe it - initially in Hebrew, and then, without pauses, in the unforgettable language of Basanavičius and Maironis, they began to sing the anthem of their small homeland - Lithuania. As it should be, they smoothly sang it from beginning to end."

The Jews of interwar Lithuania, especially the younger generation, were significantly "Lituanized." In schools, they frequently encountered Lithuanian culture, reading works by Maironis, Žemaitė, and Vaižgantas. They became familiar with folk songs, tales, and legends. They knew national heroes, spoke Lithuanian, and took this knowledge with them.