The Project of Transcribing the Data and Inscriptions from the Last Matzevot of Grodzisk Mazowiecki

Initiative and Finance:
Serge Rozenblum, France (email: srozenblum at wanadoo.fr replace "at" by @ to avoid spam)
Gary Palgon, USA (email: GMPalgon at yahoo.com replace "at" by @ to avoid spam)

I Ask Pardon...

We ask for pardon and forgivemess if, God forbid, the memory or honor of the deceased or their families was blemished during the fiels work of the recording of the headstones, or during the work of transcribing the inscriptions from the remnants of tombstones. All was done in an attempt to preseve the memory of the Jewish community of Grodzisk Mazowiecki and its last tangible trace, the Jewish cemetery which still exist: 1 seventh of the original plot. The rest was seized by a Polish factory.

I thank...

I wish to thank my dear friend and partner, Benjamin Yaari, for his support in this project. Without his incredible help and enthusiasm, physical work and tireless efforts, nothing of this venture would have been possible.

I thank Serge Rozenblum and Gary Palgon who financed the project and published the book in America. They both still work with endless dedication to preserve the memory of the lost Shtetl Grodzisk Mazowiecki.

I thank also Jan Jagelski of the Jewish Historical Institute of Poland in Warsaw, who contributed around 80 beautiful photographs and than came also to work with us, hand by hand during hours of hard work of deciphering the hard to read and crumbling matzevot (tombstones).

I also wish to commend the Jewish small Community of Warsaw, headed by a lady whose name I don't know unfortunately, who, after our mission was finished, fenced and restored the Jewish Cemtery of Grodzisk. We extend our sincere gratitude.

On one side is the prayer: "God full of mercy": "El Maleh Rahamim"
Inscription on the other side:

Here lies buried
An old man filled were his days
Esteemed he was with dear spirit and pure heart
Pious and loved by all his acquaintances
All his dealings were done in good faith
He paced in the ways of honesty
And he trained his children to walk in the path of justice
Oh our teacher the reb Chaim Mordechai GOLDFARB
Son of Reb Abraham

Died in good name and gathered to his people

Benjamin Yaari: The Mission Accomplished !

Benjamin Yaari: the Grodzisk Maz. Dossier

Ada Holtzman: Trip in Poland

Benjamin Yaari: "To the Youth Visiting the Cemeteries in Poland - Benjamin Yaari

Ada Holtzman: "Abbreviations and Terms Found on Tombstones in Poland

Ada Holtzman: My Heart Breaks With Those Broken Stones...

The Data is searchable in JOWBR

Ada Holtzman: ...My Heart Breaks With These Broken Stones (in Hebrew, a Word file))

The Index (An Excel file)

The Data: 1-399 (a zip file)

The Data: 400-599 (a zip file)

The Data: 600-699 (a zip file)

May 2001: Data Submitted to JewishGen: OWBR

Two Books Were Published about the Grodzisk Jewish Cemtery:

1) Ada Holtzman & Benjamin Yaari: "The Jewish Cemetery of Grodzisk Mazowiecky", December 1998, Published by the Authors

2) Gary Palgon & Serge Rozenblum:"The Jewish Cemetery of Grodzisk Mazowiecky", Custom Enterprises Ltd., USA, 1999, Library of Congress Catalog Card Number: 99-072452

Miriam Akavia:


"Fresh and strong is still my impression from my last visit in Poland (1988), country where I was born, me and the heroes of my stories. They came out towards me from deserted yards; from foreign apartments they peeked from shut doors, in which I knew every crack; from old houses they descended down to me on stairways so well known to me, and while I was in the street they watched me through empty hollow windows. I saw them walking below the shadow of familiar trees in the public parks, or resting on sun bathed benches; their children -and me among them- playing hiding games among the lilac bushes, or hiding behind thick stems of trees. Meeting them was painful, since my longings to them never faded. With trembling hands I wished to touch them, a real touch, but I could not, because they were and were not - because they are gone.

My visits in the Jewish cemeteries were most difficult. Here rouse towards me, not only my beloved, but a whole nation rouse from the depth of earth, from collapsing and crumbling tombs, in entangled jungle of vegetation which was spreading around them. The roots branch out, press and clip around our ancestors' tombs and swallow them. The tombstones rise up and twisted under the pressure of the roots.

These tombstones, which were erected on our deceased graves, struggle for their lives... And they are countless. Hebrew words, not understood by the people of that country but very well understood by us, written upon them. By the hand of an artist they were engraved in the stone, in letters of gold and silver, and they constitute elegies, love poems, praise and prayers, pain and farewell, wisdom and sorrow... and longings for Zion... Grand Jewish tombstones, neglected now and deserted in a foreign land, in a country with no Jews anymore. In Poland.

And the camps. Six millions of our people perished here and never brought to burial. In the land of Poland. And now, in the season of spring, wild flowers flourish around Auschwitz, Treblinka, Chelmno, and Meidanek and around the Jewish cemeteries. And among the flowers, one special beautiful small flower is distinct to my eyes, and its color is the same as the color of the skies: "Forget-me-not". Their growth seems like magic to me! How they grew here, so many - countless - so fresh and nice, in the earth sunk in blood. Their sight filled my heart with gratitude, for growing there, and for having the color of the sky and for having the name:


2 Miriam Akavia, "The Price", Sifriat Hapoalim, Tel Aviv 1988 (Hebrew), ISBN: 965-04-2045-2 Translated from Hebrew by Ada Holtzman.

Last Updated January 1st 2004


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