Cumulative Index to Zalman Zylbercweig's Leksikon fun Yidishn Teater

Index made by the Dorot Jewish Division of New York Public Library. From the project website:

"The six published volumes of editor Zalman Zylbercweig's Leksikon fun Yidishn Teater [Lexicon of the Yiddish Theater] appeared over a period of almost forty years (1931-1969) and in three countries. Dozens of volunteers collected the information and wrote the entries, which reflect not only the personalities and histories of the individuals listed but also the various styles and idiosyncrasies of the contributing writers. Volume two, published in Warsaw in 1934 on much worse paper than the other five volumes, published in New York or Mexico City, is extremely difficult to obtain. Volume five, the Holocaust memorial volume, lists primarily individuals and theater organizations destroyed by the Nazis, and the mere brevity of the entries, many of them lacking even full names, not to mention precise dates of death, speaks to how little was sometimes known of an individual as well as how important it was to the Yiddish-speaking theater community that there be a gesture of commemoration, such as that afforded by a mention in this book, nonetheless. Volume seven got as far as the page proof stage but was never published and remains scattered in several repositories.

Indispensable as the Leksikon is to students of Yiddish culture and theater history, it has been excessively hard to use for want of a single index. Volumes one and two cover the letters alef to ayin in order, but the editor discovered more and more omissions as he proceeded and set about rectifying them in subsequent volumes. Eventually, any attempt at alphabetical order was abandoned, and volumes three through six have individual indices to facilitate their use. In preparing this cumulative index, however, names have been found in the indices that do not appear in the text; conversely, there are entries in the text that do not appear in any of the indices. This index, though, seeks to point the reader to what is actually in the body of the six published volumes; where a name is listed without a corresponding entry, the name has been retained in the index but with the notation, Reference not found. See references included in the body of the work are noted as well, although not all of them lead to anything. The instruction See supplement must refer to a projected further volume that never came to fruition. Surprising omissions, such as the Israeli comedy team of Dzhigan and Shumakher, and such remarks as the entry "Badkhonim-aktyorn" that directs those interested in Eliakum Zunser to see a separate entry under his name, which does not exist, also suggest the expectation of further volumes.

Besides this index of name entries, the utility of the Leksikon would be further enhanced by an index of the productions, theaters, and places mentioned as well. Another major desideratum is to assemble and publish a complete set of page proofs of the unpublished seventh volume."