We Remember the ADLER FAMILY!

Professor Moses (Moshe) Adler

By Pinchas Adler (Published in "Bialystoker in Israel", publisher and editor Webman, Tel Aviv February 1967)

Prof. Maurycy Mosze Adler, Stanislawow (Galicja) 16.11.1887 - Bialystok 1937

Professor Adler was born in Galicja to a distinguished scholarly Jewish family. He graduated from the Institute of Law in Vienna. He did not practice law because of the breakout of the First World War. He enlisted in the Austro-Hungarian army and very soon reached the rank of a captain. As such he moved from front to front and battle to battle all over Europe. At the end of the war he returned to Galicia and dedicated himself to teaching Polish language and literature. He came to Bialystok where he taught in the Hebrew High School to his last day.

Professor Adler saw teaching as a sacred mission to whom he dedicated his life efforts and skills: to educate the Hebrew young generation. No wonder his work bore fruits. In a short time, his persona was identified with the school. Anyone who knew about the Hebrew school, knew about professor Adler and anyone who knew about him, also knew about the Hebrew school. He was a symbol of the ideal teacher and of the Hebrew Gymnasium of Bialystok. It was not by chance that Mr. Adler became the vice-principal of the school. The problems and issues of the school concerned him as much as his private issues that this became almost an automatic decision. Any small detail was important to him and he dealt with it lovingly. He felt not like an employee teacher but like an educator and leader of an important Hebrew community focused on culture and ideology. He was the educator of one class but was as interested in the problems of the other classes in which he taught. Beside the designated homeroom teacher; each class had a second "volunteer" educator, Mr. Adler. If the class educator was ill or absent Mr. Adler took his place of his own initiative, such was his devotion to the school. There was no project in the school that he did not actively participate in and all the projects he did participate in succeeded.

As the sponsor of the "Self Aid" Society for many years, he managed to raise this institution to the highest level.

As I already wrote, Mr. Adler was not a teacher out of necessity but from choice. He felt that teaching and educating the younger Hebrew generation is his calling, therefore he taught with joy. Each of his lessons in literature was imbued with love to the Hebrew nation and the homeland. His speeches on Polish heroes: Poniatowsky, Traugut and Pilsudsky were more than regular teachings. This was his feelings and opinion about our liberation. It was no chance that in these lectures, he also mentioned Herzl or the epic of the Hebrew Legion. The same can be said about his lectures on Polish literature. In the Polish language he expressed Hebrew thoughts in spirit and in content. From his lectures on Mizkievitch, Slovatsky and Wispiansky (the three poets he loved most) we learned about dedication and love to nation and homeland, the teaching of rebellion, national and military.

The Hebrew Gymnasium of Bialystok, 1937
Prof. Adler is the up most sixth from the right and Pinchas Adler in the middle, sixth from the left

It is almost unnecessary to mention that Mr. Adler was an ardent and active Zionist. It is known that he was one of the extreme ones. He was speaking all the time about the "Golden messianic horn" that was lost to the Poles because they were busy with trifles ("The wedding" by Wispiansky). He was the one who taught us to recite and forever remember these words of criticism and accusation.

He was an active member of the Revisionist Zionist Organization and was for many years a member of its national council in Poland. All his dedication and love for his people were expressed in the last days of his life. When he felt that his end is near, and he was speaking to his sister and his relatives who stood by his bedside about family matters, the horn of a factory sounded near by. His eyes glittered and he said in a weak but clear voice "By the sound of such horn the Hebrews will go east," and fell dying on his pillow while the name of his people on his lips.

He went away from us, a teacher-educator of Hebrew youth, which prepared them to serve their people and homeland. We, his older pupils vow to continue his educational and national work in training a New Hebrew generation - "Genius, Generous and Offensive".

Prof. M. Adler was born on the November 17th 1887. He passed away on March 9th 1938 and was buried in the Bialystok Jewish Cemetery.

Photograph from the funeral of Prof. Adler, March 1938. Standing from right to left: Grinberg Milka, Zelazo Dodzik, Garber Grysza and Alexander (Wasilikowski) Sasza z"l

His wife Amelia (1896) and daughter Raschka (1923) were deported to the crematorium in Treblinka on August 1943.

Nechama (Amelia) Adler Hay"d, daughter of Birkiahu Ha'Kohen Perl, Lublin 16.5.1896 - Treblinka August 1943

Raszka Adler Hay"d, sister, Bialystok 1923 - Treblinka August 1943

His two sons, the elderly Pinhas (1921) and the youngest Nathan (1927) survived in Russia (Kawkaz). In time of the Second World War, they both volunteered to the Polish Air Force, organized in Soviet Russia and participated later at the end of the World War (1945) as navigators aircrew members - night bombers.

Course for pilots-navigators in the Polish Air Force of the popular army in U.S.S.R, in the framework of the second school for pilots navigators of the Red Army on the name of Valery Chkalow, in the town of Chkalow (now Orenburg) in Ural.

Benjamin Meirtchak: "Jews-Officers in the Polish Armed Forces 1939-1945", Tel Aviv 2001

After the war Nathan (1946) and Pinchas (1949) came to Palestine - Israel where they served voluntarily long years as navigators in the Israel Air Force. Pinhas was released 1954 in the rank of a major and Nathan in the late eighties in the rank of a colonel.

In Bialystok after liberation in 1945: standing from left to right Lieutenant Monia Sorinov and Lieutenant Natan Adler; sitting in the middle Second Lieutenant Pinchas Adler and sitting to the left is Lieutenant Natek Lichtenstein, later known as Dr. Anatoli Leszczynski, died in 1996 and is buried in the military cemetery of Warszawa.

In year 2000, both have been promoted by the Ministry of Defense and of the Polish Air Force in Warsaw to the ranks of Captain (retired). Both are living with their families in Israel.

The two brothers Natan & Pinchas Adler, pilots - navigators, after liberation.

More Photographs of the Adler Family

"To Build and To Be Built" - The Contribution of Holocaust Survivors to the State of Israel Pinchas Adler

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First posted Sep 2003 - last updated September 12th, 2008