Mausha Levi

Mausha Levi was born in Panevėžys, Lithuania in 1886. The family moved to Ukmerge [Vilkomir] around 1901. He trained as a dentist at the School of Dentistry in Kazan, Russia from 1914, but never practised his profession once he returned to Ukmerge. Levi married Feige Bajer in 1918. Feige’s brother, Shimon Bajer was a photographer and Levi joined the Bajer family firm and became a photographer. Levi and the Bajer brothers, Shimon and Max, opened a photography studio on 32 Kauno Street in Ukmerge named Levi and Bajer and also used a stamp “Baer and Levi”.  However, it is not clear how much the Bajer brothers actually worked together with Mausha Levi, since Shimon Bajer was already known as one of Kaunas’s prominent commercial photographers and photojournalists at the time, while youngest brother Max had emigrated to Palestine in 1925. According to some sources, Levi redeemed Shimon Bajer's share in 1918 because the latter went to work in Kaunas. Other accounts claim that Levi bought out the Bajers’ shares around 1923 and then renamed his studio “M. Levi”. What is certain is that he continued to work there until the start of WWII. Mausha took a photo of an ORT gardening group at the Tarbut school in Ukmerge in 1922 [see images].

Sadly, Mausha Levi was killed in Ukmerge during the first days of the war together with his wife Feige and daughter Rivka.

With thanks to Mausha Levi’s granddaughter, Faina Borovsky.

See also:

M Levi and S Bayer Exhibition Prewar Lithuanian Photographers legacy -