|• Mayor||Yuri Bodrov (Komsomolets`)|
|• Total||41 km2 (16 sq mi)|
|Elevation||166 m (545 ft)|
|• Total||86 911 |
|• Density||2,154/km2 (5,580/sq mi)|
|Area code(s)||+380 4744|
Uman (Ukrainian: Умань) is a city located in the Cherkasy Oblast (province) in central Ukraine, to the east of Vinnytsia. The city rests on the banks of the Umanka River at around , and serves as the self-governing administrative center of the Uman Raion (district). Among Ukrainians, Uman is known for its depiction of the haidamak rebellions in Taras Shevchenko's longest of poems, Haidamaky ("The Haidamaks", 1843).
Uman was first mentioned in historical documents in 1616, when it was under Polish rule. Its role at this time was as a defensive fort to withstand Tatar raids, containing a prominent Cossack regiment that was stationed within the town. In 1648 it was liberated from the Poles by Ivan Hanzha, colonel to Cossack leader Bohdan Khmelnytsky, and Uman was converted to the administrative center of cossack regiment for the region. Poland retook Uman in 1667, after which the town was deserted by many of its residents who fled eastward to Left-bank Ukraine. From 1670–1674, Uman was a residence to the Hetman of right-bank Ukraine.
The Uman region was site of haidamaky uprisings in 1734, 1750, and 1768. Notably during the latter, Cossack rebels Maksym Zalizniak and Ivan Gonta captured Uman during the Koliyivshchyna uprising against Polish rule. During this revolt, a massacre took place against Jews, Poles and Ukrainian Uniates. On the very first day large numbers of Ukrainians deserted the ranks of Polish forces and joined the rebels when the city was surrounded. Thousands from the surrounding areas fled to the Cossack garrison in Uman for protection. The military commander of Uman, Mladanovich, betrayed the city's Jews and allowed the pursuing Cossacks in, in exchange for clemency towards the Polish population. In the span of three days estimated[by whom?] 20,000 Poles and Jews were slain with extreme cruelty, according to numerous Polish sources, with one source giving an estimate of 2,000 casualties. Uman's modern coat-of-arms commemorates the event depicting a "Koliy" rebel armed with a spear.
With the 1793 Third Partition of Poland, Uman became part of the Russian Empire and a number of aristocratic residences were built there. In 1795 Uman became center of Voznesensk Governorate, and in 1797, Kiev Governorate.
Into the 20th century, Uman was linked by rail to Kiev and Odessa, leading to rapid development of its industrial sector. Its population grew from 10,100 in 1860 to 29,900 in 1900 and over 50,000 in 1914.
During the Second World War, in 1941, the Battle of Uman took place in the vicinity of the town, where the German army encircled Soviet positions. Also in 1941 Adolf Hitler, together with Benito Mussolini visited Uman. Today the city has optical and farm-machinery plants, a cannery, a brewery, a vitamin factory, a sewing factory, a footwear factory, and other industrial enterprises. Its highest educational institutions are the Uman National University of Horticulture and the Uman State Pedagogical University. The main architectural monuments are the catacombs of the old fortress, the Basilian monastery (1764), the city hall (1780–2), the Dormition Roman Catholic church in the Classicist style (1826), and 19th-century trading stalls.
Uman's landmark is a famous park complex, Sofiyivka (Софiївка; Polish: Zofiówka), founded in 1796 by Count Stanisław Szczęsny Potocki, a Polish noble, who named it for his wife Sofia. The park features a number of waterfalls and narrow, arching stone bridges crossing the streams and scenic ravines.
A large Jewish community lived in Uman in the 18th and 19th centuries. During the Second World War, in 1941, the Battle of Uman took place in the vicinity of the town, where the German army encircled Soviet positions. The Germans deported the entire Jewish community, murdering some 17,000 Jews, and completely destroyed the Jewish cemetery, burial place of the victims of the 1768 uprising as well as Rebbe Nachman of Breslov. (After the war, a Breslov Hasid managed to locate the Rebbe's grave and preserved it when the Soviets turned the entire area into a housing project.)
Since the 1990s there has been a small, but growing, Jewish population in Uman, concentrated around Rebbe Nachman of Breslov tomb in Pushkina street. The local Jews are mostly involved in pilgrimage of Jewish tourists that arrive to the town.
Pilgrimage to Rebbe Nachman's grave
Every Rosh Hashana, there is a major pilgrimage by tens of thousands of Hasidim and others from around the world to the burial site of Rebbe Nachman of Breslov, located on the former site of the Jewish cemetery in a rebuilt synagogue. Rebbe Nachman spent the last five months of his life in Uman, and specifically requested to be buried here. As believed by the Breslov Hassidim, before his death he solemnly promised to intercede on behalf of anyone who would come to pray on his grave on Rosh Hashana, "be he the worst of sinners"; thus, a pilgrimage to this grave provides the best chance of getting unscathed through the stern judgement which, according to Jewish faith, God passes on everybody on Yom Kippur.
The Rosh Hashana pilgrimage dates back to 1811, when the Rebbe's foremost disciple, Nathan of Breslov, organized the first such pilgrimage on the Rosh Hashana after the Rebbe's death. The annual pilgrimage attracted hundreds of Hasidim from Ukraine, Belarus, Lithuania and Poland throughout the 19th and early 20th centuries, until the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917 sealed the border between Russia and Poland. A handful of Soviet Hasidim continued to make the pilgrimage clandestinely; some were discovered by the KGB and exiled to Siberia, where they died. The pilgrimage ceased during World War II and resumed on a drastically smaller scale in 1948. From the 1960s until the fall of Communism in 1989, several hundred American and Israeli Hasidim made their way to Uman, both legally and illegally, to pray at the grave of Rebbe Nachman. In 1988, the Soviets allowed 250 men to visit the Rebbe's grave for Rosh Hashana; the following year, over 1,000 Hasidim gathered in Uman for Rosh Hashana 1989. In 1990, 2,000 Hasidim attended. In 2008, attendance reached 25,000 men and boys. In 2009, over 25,000 Jews came on Israeli El Al chartered flights.
- Sofiyivsky Park - a landscape park near the city
Twin towns - Sister cities
Uman is twinned with:
- Davis, California, United States
- Gniezno, Poland
- Haapsalu, Estonia (2003)
- Łańcut, Poland
- Milford Haven, United Kingdom
- (Ukrainian) (1972) Icтopia мicт i ciл Укpaїнcькoї CCP - Черкаськa область (History of Towns and Villages of the Ukrainian SSR - Cherkasy Oblast), Kyiv.
- "World Gazetteer". Archived from the original on 2007-09-30.
- Magocsi, A History of Ukraine, 1996, p297
- "Uman". Encyclopedia of Ukraine. Retrieved 26 September 2011.
- Paul Robert Magocsi "A History of Ukraine", Univ. of Washington Press 1996, p.300
- "Uman! Uman! Rosh HaShanah! A guide to Rebbe Nachman's Rosh HaShanah in Uman".
- David M. Gitlitz & Linda Kay Davidson Pilgrimage and the Jews (Westport: CT: Praeger, 2006), 115-117.
- Kaplan, Aryeh (1985). "Until the Mashiach: Rabbi Nachman's biography: an annotated chronology". Jerusalem/New York: Breslov Research Institute. Chapter 24: Uman 5570 (1810).
- "Anyone in the world, be he the worst and most corrupt of sinners, would he come to my grave, give a penny to charity on my behalf and chant the Ten Mizmorim, then would I overturn the very Heavens on his behalf, and from the Most High of Heights would I descend to the Deepest Depths of Hell, to pull him out" (Breslov website (Hebrew) ).
- See the article "A New Phase in Jewish-Ukrainian Relations" by Mitsuharo Akao; bibliographical details at informaworld.com
- "Hasidic Jews celebrate holiday in Uman" Jewish Telegraphic Agency, 2008-10-02. Retrieved 2009-08-01.
- "Sõpruslinnad" (in Estonian). Haapsalu. Retrieved 23 July 2011.
- "Łańcut Official Website - Foreign contacts". (in English) © 2008 Urząd Miejski w Łańcucie, Plac Sobieskiego 18, 37-100 Łańcut. Retrieved 2008-11-20.
- (Ukrainian) Uman informational portal
- (Ukrainian) Evening Uman. Uman informational portal and newspaper
- (English) All about Uman
- History of Jewish Community in Uman
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