WORLD COMMITTEE                                  IRGUN YOTZEY PLOTZK

             for the                                                       BE-ISRAEL

PLOTZK MEMORIAL BOOK                       (Plotzker Association in Israel)













Vice-Chairman, Plotzker Association in Israel






Publishing House

Tel-Aviv, 1967


The Yizkor Book  in MS Word File Format 

The Yizkor Book  in MS Acrobat Format

Book Donated to JewishGen Yizkor Books Database




The English part is not a complete translation of the Yizkor book of Płock but rather a synopsis, summary, and should be treated as such. there are 684 pages in Hebrew and Yiddish but only 96 pages in English.

I have translated and added the titles and page numbers of articles which do not appear in the English summary. I added the code "H" if article is in Hebrew, or "Y" if in Yiddish.

I have added also the sub-chapters to the various articles, which are not included in the original Table of Contents. On many occasions I have added from the Hebrew and Yiddish parts of the book  also names of people mentioned in the articles, when that was possible, mainly in the Holocaust chapters.

I have also added the names of people who appear in the photographs to the captions in English which did not include these names, see pages

I wish to thank the Płock Landsmanschaft who encouraged me and gave me and JewishGen the permission to post the Płock Yizkor book in the Internet.


It is my hope that this book will serve as commemoration to the Jewish ancient grand and holy community of Płock, exterminated by the Germans during the Holocaust.


Ada Holtzman April 18th, 2004Yom Hashoah , 27 Nissan, 5764








The first Zionist fulfillment

Elisza Jecheskeli (Czrnobroda)


Four friends and their spiritual world

M. Rubin


"Agudat Zion"



The festivities of "L'g Baomer for the national fund

M. Rubin


Keren Kayemet Activities



"Zeirei Zion" in Płock

I. Tynski


The Agricultural Farm of Moshe Krakowski

E. E.


"Hachshara" Kibbutz on the name of "Borochow"

F. Fliderblum


Hehalutz, Hehalutz Hatzair and Hapoel

Getting organized

The objection of the extreme religious

"Hehalutz Hatzair" (Young Hehalutz)

The branch activities

Kibbutz Hachshara in town

The visit of the 2 messengers from Eretz Israel

The experiences of the Alyia


Training of young sportsmen

Dedication to Jewish sport

Y. Rosenblum


Summary of 10 years of "Poalei Zion"

R. Lichtman


"Mizrahi" Movement



"Herzlia" Association

M. Rubin


"Poalei Zion (Left)"

The First World War

The local politic work after the War

The social-professional activity

The cultural public work


B. Okolica


The "Freiheit" Movement

D. Shahari


"Agudat Israel" in Płock and the Region

The founding assembly

The educational activity

The members of Agudat Israel in the Community Committee and the Municipality Council

The economic activity

L. Geliebter


The Activities of the "Bund"

Under the czarist regime

During the war years

The first years of independent Poland

The visits of the "Bund" leaders

Striving for victory

Last words

I. M. Oliver (Ilover)


"Hashomer Hatzair"

The beginning of the movement  as a scout Jewish movement

Founding of Hashomer Hatzair in Płock with the Hebrew Gymnasium

Changes of the ideology and the human structure

Two girls of the Płock branch fight against the Nazis

E. E.


Revisionists and "Beitar"



General Zionist Youth Movement

("Hashomer Haleumi" – "Hanoar Hazioni" – "Akiba")


B. Galewski


"Akiba" in Płock ("Divrei Akiba" 14.12.1933)



From our own ideas (the ideological struggle for Zionism and Judaism)

Meir Pagorek


The Local Communist Party

Sh. P.


The history of "Maccabi" in Płock





M. Rubin


The last two years of "Maccabi"

A. Najman (Nowicki)







By Moshe Rubin

Page 55


The author of this article, chairman of the "Plotzker Association of Israel" pays tribute to four young people, aged 17, (Itzhak Rubin, A. L. Perlmuter, Z. Baran, Z. H. Krook) who published, in the years of the First World War, a Yiddish periodical "Di Shvere Zeit" (Hard Times), which included articles, poetry, drawings, etc.


Mr. Rubin tells us details of the biographies of those four friends who were, about 50 years ago, "carriers of the banner of culture and art" in Plotzk. He quotes a fragment of a Yiddish poem, published in that periodical, dealing with the tragedy of Jews who fight and die for the countries of their residence, yet their sacrifice is not appreciated.





Page 55


Zionism in Plotzk was always influenced by the great Zionist leader Yitzhak Grinbaum, one of the founders of the local "Hazamir" library, where cultural and Zionist work was carried out in the years preceding the First World War. The Zionists in Plotzk named their organization "Agudat-Zion" (Zion Association). It raised money for the Zionist funds, arranged national celebrations, propa­ganda tours and election campaigns to the Jewish communal organs.


Other activities included yearly "bazaars", whose proceeds were handed over to the Keren Kayemet.


In 1934, when the General Zionist Organization was split into two groups (General Zionists "A" and "B") the Plotzk branch remained faithful to its beloved and popular leader, Yitzhak Grinbaum. As a result of that split, the "Hanoar Hazioni A" and "Akiba" youth-organizations were set up.


"Agudat Zion was often visited by representatives of the National Executive of the Zionist Organization in Warsaw. It took part in all national gatherings, conferences and campaigns of the Z. O.





Page 55-56


The Plotzk "Keren Kayemet" Committee was composed of represen­tatives of all Zionist factions, under the presidency of Dr. Itzhak Feinberg and Azriel Kowalski as representatives of the Central Com­mittee. The year 1931 was proclaimed as an anniversary year (50 years since the "Hibbat Zion" movement and 30 years since the Keren Kayemet were founded). The town was divided into zones and the local youth in the form of a "Gdud Keren Kayemet" went from door to door to collect money for the National Fund.


Its most popular source of income was the "Blue Box". Youth movement members installed these boxes in almost every Jewish house where it symbolized the link between the Jewish family and the upbuilding of the National Home in Eretz Israel.


The 1931 anniversary year was outstanding as regards the sums collected and the positive response of Plotzk Jewry.


Keren Kayemet continued its fundraising until the outbreak of World War II. Its last successful drive took place in May 1939, when Wizo ran a K. K. L. bazaar. Nobody knew then that this would be the last K. K. L. function in Plotzk.





By Itzhak Tynski

Page 56


This faction, affiliated to the Zionist Workers movement, was established in Plotzk just after the First World War. Its members were active for Zionism by raising money for the Keren Kayemet (in which it distinguished itself), organizing festivals and helping those immigrating to Eretz Israel.


Fishl Fliderblum, one of the leaders of this movement, served as the last Jewish Community chairman and was elected a delegate to the last pre-war Zionist congress, which took place in Switzerland.


Zeirei Zion eventually united with "Right Poalei Zion" and other smaller groups and together formed the "United Party", (equivalent to Mapai of Israel).





By E. E.

Page 56-57


An agricultural farm owned by Moshe Krakowski existed in Plotzk for 20 years prior to World War II. - Krakowski was born in a village near Izbica and at the age of 36, in 1918, acquired a farm in Milodroz, about 12 kms from Plotzk. He, his wife and children devoted all their energy to restoring the farm and within a few years, the Krakowski farm became an example. The Polish peasants had always regarded Jews as traders in flour or agricultural produce, but had never known Jewish farmers, who own and cultivate their land. Hence Krakowski was at first looked upon as someone unusual, but later the gentiles got used to the fact and held the new cultivation methods of this Jewish farming family in high esteem.


Krakowski's place was used as a "Hachshara" (Training Farm) for Jewish youth preparing for Aliya to Eretz Israel. Many pioneers of various youth-organizations worked on that farm. The Jews of Plotzk were proud of its existence, which was proof that Jews were able to do agricultural work, and do it well.


The Krakowski family's desire was to establish a new agricultural settlement in Israel, which would absorb immigrants from Plotzk. Only one of the families - Tuvia - managed to go to Israel and he is now a member of Kibbutz Merhavya in the Yizrael Valley.





By Fishl Fliderblum

Page 57


A translation of an article, published in January 1936, in a Yiddish periodical called "Dos Plotzker Wort". The author gives a short history of the kibbutz which served as a training center for Jewish boys and girls prior to their Alyia (immigration to Eretz Israel) to Eretz Israel. At "Hachshara" they were trained to accustom themselves to physical work and to Kibbutz life.


They were trained in various branches of manual labor (at a saw-mill, oil factory, tannery, etc.) and in spite of the fact that most of them came from well-to-do families, they were always happy and satisfied with their way of life. They were idealistic and saw themselves as pioneers of great Jewish masses who would follow them to Israel where they would turn into workers and farmers.


The author describes the daily way of life of these youngsters. Their hard work and the nature of their leisure hours: reading and exchanging views on their future life as pioneers in Israel.


He concludes by demanding that the Jewish public of Plotzk help the "Hachshara" center, since it contributed so much both to Zionism and to the preparation of pioneering immigrants to the Land of Israel.





By Y. Rosenblum

Pages 57-58


The first group of "Hehalutz" began its activities in our town in 1923. The organizers made it clear that the real aim of this new organization was the "Alyia" (immigration to Eretz Israel) of its members and manual labor in Eretz Israel. In spite of the fact that the orthodox circles in town opposed this newly-established group, the number of the "Halutzim" (pioneers) grew from year to year and the local branch of "Hehalutz" became a center of various Zionist activities.


While the "Hehalutz" organization consisted of young people over the age of 18, who were preparing to go to Eretz Israel, its sister-organization "Hehalutz Hatzair" (The Young Pioneer) had as members younger boys and girls. This last-mentioned organization prepared the youth for their future life as pioneers and concentrated on cultural activities (teaching of Hebrew, history of Zionism and the Jewish Workers' movement, etc.).


In 1931 a "kibbutz" was established in Plotzk by two young boys (Benzion Altman and Aron Bricker) who were delegated for that purpose by the Central Committee of the organization. A year earlier two young men from Eretz Israel came to town and exerted a great influence on the younger generation there.


In the thirties many young boys and girls left town for Eretz Israel where most of them lived as pioneers, either in kibbutzim or in other forms of settlement. The number of "Alyia" candidates constantly increased until the outbreak of the Second World War.


The young pioneers of Plotzk who did not succeed in reaching Israel (then under British Mandatory Government) were murdered, like so many others, by the Nazis during the Second World War.




Among other sports organizations there existed in the thirties a local branch of "Hapoel", affiliated to the central organization of this name. All sorts of sport activities were carried out by "Hapoel" football, ping-pong (table-tennis), athletics, physical exercises, gymnastics and bicycle-riding.


This organization was established in 1931. Its members distin­guished themselves especially in football and some of them were members of the regional team.


Thanks to the devotion of some of the founders and sponsors of this and other sports organizations (like "Maccabi", "Stern" and "Morgenstern"), various spheres of sport became popular among Jewish boys and girls in town. Their activities made the Jewish public proud of their younger generation.


Like others, most of these Jewish young sportsmen and sports­women perished in the years 1939-1945.





      page 58


A branch of the Zionist-religious movement "Mizrahi, was founded in Plotzk after the first world war. It distinguished itself primarily in its devoted work for the National Fund and in popularizing Zionist ideas among the religious segment of the community, in synagogues, etc. The first Hebrew kindergarten in Plotzk was founded through the initiative and with the help of that movement.


"Mizrahi" members cooperated with other Zionist groups and had considerable influence in town. In 1937 two of their representatives were elected to the Kehila Council.


The author regrets that lack of material on this subject does not enable him to publish a more detailed report on that movement. Very few "Mizrahi" members succeeded to come to Israel in time and even fewer survived the Holocaust.


Among its founders: Jakob Aszkenazi, Szlomo Wilenski, Abraham Flaks. Jeszayahu Muszkat, Reuwen Kanarek, Herszel Majranc, Efraim Dawid Elberg, Jechiel Wosulk, Szlomo Rozen.





By Moshe Rubin

Page 59


The author was one of the founders of the youth organization "Herzlia". In 1918 several members of "Hashomer Hatzair" left that movement, because it had turned, in their opinion, into a political party, and consequently founded "Herzlia".


"Herzlia" developed educational activities in Plotzk, organized Hebrew courses and trained its members to become devoted Zionists and go on Alyia.


The development period of the organization continued till 1922, when most of its leaders left Plotzk. Despite its relatively short existence, "Herzlia" played an important role in the Zionist education of the young Jewish generation in that period.





By Beza1el Okolica

Page 59


A branch of the "Poalei Zion" movement was founded in Plotzk in 1904. After the Russian revolution of 1905 its activities were outlawed by the Czarist police, and "Poalei Zion" members went underground. Only after the First World War and the establishment of the Polish State, did the movement succeed in founding branches in almost every town and township, as also in Plotzk.


"Poalei Zion" took an active part in the elections of the Jewish community, the municipality and the Parliament. They also estab­lished evening courses for workers and organized them in trade unions, which were responsible for strikes in several workshops, as a result of which the employers had to pay higher wages.


A dramatic circle and a sports club named "Stern" (Star) were established in 1925.


"Poalei Zion" members distinguished themselves in their bitter fight against anti-Semitism in the pre-war years and as anti-Nazi fighters during the war. Some of them survived and live today in Israel, but the majority perished with the whole community during the holocaust.


Members mentioned: Chaim Makowski, Olesznik, Lamaniec, Zilberstein, Czok, Ostrower, Kowal, Cukier, Josef Malanek, Sendzen Wint, Magner, Okalica.





By Dov Shahari

page 59-60


Two small groups of young Zionists-Socialists, one from Wloclawek and the second from Plotzk met in May 1926 and founded jointly the youth movement called - "Freiheit" (Freedom), which comprised mainly Yiddish speaking Jewish youth of the working classes.


The author describes how study-groups and summer-camps were organized, the first of which took place in a village near Plotzk in 1929. That camp was attended by Zeev Sherf as a representative of the Central Committee in Warsaw.

Several young boys distinguished themselves in leading the movement, especially Fishl Fliderblum, who helped those youth groups in many ways. He was elected member of the Plotzk Municipal Committee and served as the last Chairman of the Jewish Kehila before the holocaust.


Some members of the "Freiheit, organization immigrated to Israel both legally with immigration certificates and illegally on "Maapilim" ships. The last of its members arrived in Haifa in September 1939.





By Leib Geliebter

Page 60


"Agudat Israel" was established in Plotzk in 1919, about seven years after the world conference at Katowice, where the world organization of orthodox Jews was founded.


The speakers at the first meeting emphasized that the Jewish Kehila (community) was run by assimilationists who constituted a minority in town, and that the time was ripe for giving orthodox Jews their rightful place in the Kehila.


In the following years the Aguda established several Jewish religious schools in town. The movement secured a prominent place in the Kehila for itself, and its representative was elected its Chairman. It took part in the municipal elections and its representative who became councilor, obtained the agreement of the municipal authorities to employ religious Jews in their service without their having to desecrate the Shabbat.

The economic activity of the Aguda included the establishment of a prosperous bank, which extended loans on easy terms to small merchants and artisans.


When the Nazis invaded Plotzk they confiscated the property of the bank, arrested the author of this article who was tortured and wounded, but survived thanks to the medical treatment of the unforgettable Dr. Feinberg.


Members mentioned: R' Iczel Burstyn, R' Jakob Jaszjewicz, R' Jeszayahu Spierstein, R' Kalman Lajbisz Kilbert, R' Fiszel Benet, R' Icchak Meir Zilberberg, R' Dawid Warszawiak, R' Mosze Mordechai Geliebter, R' Jakob Nagel' R' Arie Kosowocki, R' Sinai Wolf Rozen.





By J. M. Oliver (Ilover)

Page 60-61


Like other leftist movements, the "Bund" party's primary aim was the organization of trade unions among Jewish workers. Only after the First World War were they free to engage legally in their work.


The "Bund" movement was very popular in Plotzk and most Jewish workers voted for its list at election time. In 1920 it had two seats on the municipal council.


The local Bund branch organized the Jewish working youth in a special group, called "Skif". A Bund representative, Israel Gershon Burshtyn, was Lavnik (senior municipal councilor) of Plotzk and was very popular with all Jewish and non-Jewish citizens. He parti­cularly distinguished himself in frequently preventing the eviction of poor tenants from their homes for non-payment of rents.


In the last years preceding the war the Bund tried to combat anti-Semitism in joint action with the Polish Socialist Party (P. P. S.).


I. G. Burshtyn survived the holocaust and spent the last years of his life in America where he felt lonely, without contact with the Jewish working masses to whom he had devoted his whole life. He wrote his memories on the destruction of Jewish Plotzk, and bequeathed his legacy to the Plotzker Association in Israel, who established a Loan Fund for new Olim (immigrants to Israel) from these funds.






By E. E

Page 61


This youth movement, which combined Zionist aspirations with "self realization" (i. e. going to Eretz Israel and becoming a worker and pioneer) found its first adherents in Plotzk after the end of the First World War. The history of "Hashomer Hatzair" in our town may be divided into two parts:

a)  From 1921 to 1927, when this youth organization was linked to the local ''Jewish Gymnasium''

b)  From 1927 to 1939, as an independent unit.


In its first period its pattern was that of a purely scouting organization, on the lines of the "Blau Weiss"  Zionist youth movement in Germany and the "Wandervogel" groups there. Two local teachers, Baruch (Bernard) Silber and David Eisenberg had then a great deal of influence on the local branch of that organization. Especially the latter made great efforts to acquaint the young boys and girls with Judaism, teaching them Hebrew, Jewish history, etc.


During the second period (1927-1939) the local branch became more dependent on other factors in the community and distingu­ished itself by its activities. It exerted great influence on the younger generation and many of its members played an important part in re-settling Israel, among whom there were some of the founders of the famous Kibbutz Negba in the Negev. Although "Hashomer Hatzair" later turned to the left and became very radical, it still exerted great influence.


Two young girls of the Plotzk branch of "Hashomer Hatzair"  (Tova Beatus and Rozka Korezak) belonged to the anti-German Partisan units, who fought in the ghetto of Wilna against the Nazis. The first one perished on one of her missions and the other lives now in a Kibbutz in Israel.





Page 62


As in other towns and townships in Poland there existed also in Plotzk a branch of the Revisionist party and Beitar, its youth organization. In spite of the tension, which prevailed in those years (prior to 1939) between this movement and other Zionist groups, no clashes occurred in Plotzk.


The Beitar youth movement had a number of adherents in Plotzk and like other youth-groups organized summer-camps and pre-military training. It called upon its members to immigrate to Eretz Israel and take part in its struggle for independence.


Due to the lack of documents the editor is unable to quote figures and mention names connected with Beitar. None of its members survived after the war, and no photos are left.


The editor concludes by paying tribute to this extreme Zionist group which played its part in the sphere of Zionist education in Plotzk.






By Benyamin Galewski

Page 62


This movement comprised two groups: "Hashomer-Haleumi", later known as "Hanoar Hazioni" and "Akiba". The first group was founded in Plotzk in 1929 after a lecture held there by its leader Dr. R. Feldshuh (Ben-Shem). It had a considerable influence on the Jewish youth in town and distinguished itself in educational and other activities. "Summer colonies" (camps), where intensive Zionist work was done, were organized every summer. In 1930 the movement split into two groups. One of it joined the Progressive General Zionist faction, led by I. Grinbaum. The second movement, called "Akiba" was founded in Plotzk in 1931, and comprised mainly students. This move­ment adhered to Jewish tradition, although it was not orthodox in character. A summer-camp held in 1933, in which a youth group from Plotzk took part, had a considerable influence on the future of "Akiba" in town. The author quotes, in this connection, some excerpts from periodicals which praise the important work done by "Akiba" in Plotzk.


Three members (Meir Pagorek, Benyamin Galewski and Eliyahu Eisenberg) were elected members of the Central Committee of the movement. The activities of "Akiba", continued until the outbreak of war in September 1939.





By  Sh. P.

page 63


The Communist party in Plotzk, as in all other towns of Poland in that period, was illegal. Its aims were of a general political nature, but a considerable number of its members were Jews. Its main spheres of influence were the trade unions, a library and a sports circle called "Wicher" (Storm).


When the frontier between Nazi-occupied Poland and Russia was opened for refugees, many young Jews took advantage of the opportunity and escaped to Russia, thereby saving their lives. Being later on confronted with the realities of the Soviet regime, they left the U. S. S. R. and emigrated to Western countries and to Israel after the war.





By Moshe Rubin

Page 63-64


The author of this article was one of the top leaders of the "Mac­cabi" organization in Plotzk, who served many years as its Honorary Secretary and Vice-Chairman.


First steps to organize Jewish youth in a sports-organization were taken during the First World War (in 1915). A group of Jewish boys used to gather on a free plot near the "New Market" and do exercises under most primitive conditions. They were assisted by ex-students of the Russian Secondary School. When the town was under German rule, a special Jewish committee of sports-minded citizens was constituted and attempted to obtain the necessary license from the German autho­rities in order to organize the until then sporadic sports activities.


That year a special sports-gathering took place in the local theatre which marked the beginning of Jewish sports activities in town.


"Maccabi" organized a great festival in 1916, in which hundreds of its members from Plotzk and neighboring localities took part. When the town came under Polish rule, the authorities did not view Jewish sports activities with favor and tried on many occasions to limit them, but in spite of it, "Maccabi" grew in members and opened various branches of sports activities. Its members also took part in many general Jewish and Zionist campaigns. The outbreak of the Polish-Soviet war 1920 restricted the "Maccabi" activities, but later on, when Poland was re-established and battles ceased, many instructors and leaders of "Maccabi" left for Warsaw to study. A newly-elected committee redecorated the sports-hall, bought equipment and organized new groups. The years 1923-1934 marked a steady development of "Maccabi", which became a part of Jewish life in Plotzk and played an important role in the physical training of Jewish youth. New sections were organized: for light athletics, boxing, bicycle-riding, ski, etc. Members of "Maccabi" were in that period engaged in general cultural and Zionist affairs, besides their sports activities.


The author recalls one of the most significant events in the community's life: The arrival of Jewish sportsmen from Eretz Israel. It was a motorcycle group which toured many countries of Europe in 1930 and while in Poland, visited Plotzk. That event - says the author - was unforgettable and all those who witnessed it, will forever remember it.


The dedication of the "Maccabi" flag became a Jewish national festival. An article published in the Warsaw Yiddish daily "Haynt" (The Day) gave a detailed report of that important event and its influence on Plotzk's nationally minded Jewish youth.


At the end of 1934 the author left for Eretz Israel. He was confident that his followers and the younger generation in Plotzk would continue his work for "Maccabi" which was inspired by the slogan "mens sana in corpore sano".






By Adam Najman (Nowicki)

Page 64


The "Maccabi" sports-organization played an important role in the sport-life of the Jewish youth in Plotzk. It contained all possible sections: football, gymnastics, light athletics, basket-ball, hockey, boxing, table-tennis, etc. The local Jewish youth of the town, being prevented from joining gentile sports organizations due to the prevailing anti-Semitic trends, flocked into the Jewish sports-organizations, and especially to "Maccabi".


The author describes various sports activities which were the pride of the Jewish public and mentions the last football-match which took place in the summer of 1939 between the local "Maccabi" team and the Wloclawek "Maccabi" team. He also recollects one of the cases which proved that the "Maccabi" members did not confine themselves to sports activities only, and were always prepared to protect Jews and Jewish honor: a group of Jewish boys and girls was sitting on benches in a local public garden, when they were attacked by hooligans who wanted to expel them from the park. "Maccabi" members rushed to the help of the attacked youngsters and beat the attackers up.


The author mentions with appreciation the activities of the following: Felix Margulis, and Henryk Shenvits, the last two chairmen of "Maccabi"; Vice-chairman Artek Galevski and General Secretary Abraham Altman. They contributed a lot to the prosperity and success of local "Maccabi".


Sportsmen mentioned (partial list): Artek Galewski, Leon Szczyg, Israel Lisser, Israel Goldman and his brother Romek, Leon Strach, Szlomo Szczyg, Szymon Prusak, Menczyk, Lubranicki, Dawid Krajcer, Dr. Matias Marknstras, Henryk Szenwic, Malgot, Gad Tynski, Eliyahu Baran, Pawel Gombinski, Rudek Lubranicki, Jarzyk Goldberg, Gutek Flajszer, Hela Goldman, Sala Plocer, Sala Kot, Mitek Wasserman, Salek Zilberstein, Alek Rusak, Altrowicz, Gold, Salek Lichtenstein, Adam Najman, Zosia Goldberg,  Fela Koza, Teresa Strach, Sabinka Eisenberg, Heniek Najman, Adam Goldberg.




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Last updated May 17th, 2004