WORLD COMMITTEE                                  IRGUN YOTZEY PLOTZK

for the                                                                     BE-ISRAEL

PLOTZK MEMORIAL BOOK                       (Plotzker Association in Israel)

 

 

 

PLOTZK

(PŁOCK)

 

A HISTORY OF AN ANCIENT JEWISH COMMUNITY IN POLAND

 

Editor:

ELIYAHU EISENBERG

Vice-Chairman, Plotzker Association in Israel

 

 

 

 

"HAMENORA"

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

 

 

Notes

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

 

POST WAR EFFORTS OF REBUILDING

 

Survivors from the fire  

Alfred Blei (30.10.1945)

H-606

 

The activities of the Płocker Survivors Committee

 

In liberated Płock – the remembrance assembly of March 3rd, 1946

David Lichtenstein: the first Płocker victims of the war

Talks by Mrs. Koenigsberg, Zielonka, Mr. Cichi (from Drobin),  Eisenberg, Platkewicz, Margolin and Alfred Blei, chairman.

 

 

H-608

Exhumation (21.10.1946)

 

H-610

Summary of the Płocker Survivors Committee activities (1948)

M. Tirman

H-611

The dedication ceremony of the memorial monument to Płock martyrs (built by architect Benjamin Arie Leib Perlmuter)

 

H-612

Jewish Plotzk cannot be rebuilt

The path of agony of the Jews of Płock

Trials of rehabilitation

The plant is not revived

I. G. Bursztyn

82

H-614

Y-619

 

I returned Home

Memories and experiences of a refugee upon return after the Holocaust

In a refugees train to Poland

The first encounter with the city, June 1946

Trials to renew life which were destroyed

Szeroka street

The house of Maccabi

A struggle for labor

In the main streets of town

In the "Tumy" boulevard

The grand synagogue

The cemetery

I. G. Chanachowicz (Kent)

83

H-629

Post- War Activities in Plotzk

A memorial meeting in liberated Plotzk (3.5.1946)

Re-burial ceremony of 25 Nazi victims

Summary of the activities by the committee of Plotzk survivors

Unveiling of the monument (23.10.1949)

 

83

 

POST-WAR EFFORTS OF REBUILDING

 

JEWISH PLOTZK CAN NOT BE REBUILT

By Israel Gershon Bursztyn

Page 82

 

The author, who was one of the small number of Plotzk-born Jews who returned after the war to their native town, describes the hopelessness and apathy of this tiny group which found Plotzk "Judenrein". Even after five years of suffering the Polish population of the town and its neighborhood showed its negative attitude to the returning Jews. In 1945 there occurred cases of murder in Poland and Jews were not safe in their homes, on buses or in trains. Even blood libel accusations similar to those known in the Middle Ages, were spread. The authorities, although willing to eradicate anti-Semitism, proved helpless against the bandits of the anti-Government groups, who were influenced by five years of Nazi indoctrination.

 

The late Mr. Bursztyn, who died several years ago in the U.S.A., was a leader of the Jewish Workers' Party in Plotzk, the "Bund", and as such all the pre-war Jewish places of Plotzk were dear to him. He describes with great nostalgia the town as it was, as well as the subsequent destruction.

 

We learn from this article that there were people in the town who did not surrender to the Nazis and once they realized that the destination of the deportees was extermination, they fought and encouraged their brethren to do likewise. He recalls the case of a young man who delivered an ardent speech against the Nazis and prayed that God would take revenge on them, right in the truck which took him and many others to their death.

 

He also describes the social activity of a man who took care of the Home for the Aged and stayed with the old people until the last moment. (A case similar to that of the Warsaw teacher Janusz Korczak, who proudly marched together with his pupils to the death-camp).

 

After returning to Plotzk, Mr. Bursztyn and his friends arrived very soon at the conclusion that they would have to leave this "valley of death", and find another place of residence. All their efforts to renew Jewish life in Plotzk were in vain. "The plant did not take roots again" - concludes the author.

 

Home

 

I RETURNED HOME

By Israel Gershon Chanachowicz (Kent)

Page 83

 

The author, a Plotzk-born refugee, left his native town a fortnight before the Second World War broke out in September 1939. He returned home after spending several years in Soviet Russia, where he worked under deplorable conditions in labor camps, longing for his birth-place without knowing what had happened there during his absence.

 

He describes the long train-journey from Siberia to Plotzk as a repatriate who still cherished some hope to find somebody of his family there. On returning home in 1946 he found his town empty of Jews. A Polish family lived in the house where he had spent his boyhood. After some hesitation, he entered his former home and asked its new inhabitants whether some pictures of his family were perhaps left there. In reply, the door was closed in his face with, a bang by a hostile woman.

 

After wandering a few days through town and meeting a handful of Jewish survivors he came to the conclusion that there was no purpose in his staying there.

 

The author tries to reconstruct his. memories of Jewish Plotzk's glorious past, its institutions, synagogues, organizations and cannot comprehend that this epoch is all a matter of the past. Even the cemetery had been destroyed. The Germans had taken the tombstones to Germany and now no evidence was any longer available concerning the previous existence of a great Jewish community in Plotzk.

Home

 

POST-WAR ACTIVITIES

pages 83-84

 

A MEMORIAL MEETING IN LIBERATED PLOTZK

 

On March 3rd, 1946 a meeting took place in Plotzk of' the hand­ful of survivors, who had returned to town from the death camps, from Russia, from hideouts or places where had they lived disguised as Aryans. The chairman, Alfred Blei, paid tribute to' the memory of the nearly 9.000 Jews who were annihilated.

 

Messrs David Lichtenstein, Koenigsberg, Zielonka, Eisenberg, Platkiewicz and Margolin described the sufferings of the Plotzk Jews in the war years at all the stations of their torturous road td death.

 

One of the participants of the Treblinka uprising dedicated his" speech to the Plotzk Jews and other inmates of this death camp who had planned and carried out an attack on their Nazi oppressors, killed many of them and freed hundreds of Jews from that camp. Unfortunately they were eventually overpowered by the Germans and their Ukrainian helpers, and many of' them were killed. But with their death they proved that the Jews, whenever possible, made valiant attempts to fight their oppressors.

 

The chairman A. Blei encouraged the remnants of the old Plotzk community, among them a number of people from nearby Sierpc, to carry on Jewish life.

 

RE-BURIAL CEREMONY OF NAZI VICTIMS

 

On October 21st, 1946 a re-burial ceremony of 25 Plotzk Jews who were killed by the Nazis near Imielnica village, was held. All the survivors who had returned to Plotzk as well as Government officials attended the ceremony. The dead were commemorated in speeches held by the Committee Chairman Alfred Blei and others.

 

Judge Koenigsberg gave a historical survey of Jewish life in Plotzk. Representatives of nearby localities were also present.

 

SUMMARY OF THE ACTIVITIES BY THE COMMITTEE OF PLOTZK SURVIVORS

 

This is an excerpt of an article published in "Dos Naye Lebn" (New Life) Warsaw, No.20 of 1948, by M. Tirman, after his visit to Plotzk.

 

He describes the life of the survivors who tried to resettle after the war in Plotzk. Those who returned were assisted by central Jewish institutions in Poland and abroad. Great efforts were made to establish social and cultural institutions and to rebuild Jewish life. Alfred Blei and Mr. and Mrs. Koenigsberg distinguished themselves in this task and helped all those Jews who returned to town. 50 Jewish children were born in Plotzk after, the war and a lot was done to make conditions easier for their young mothers. A drama circle was established in order to restore cultural life, as it had been before the war.

 

The author also mentions the preparations made by the Architect Benjamin Arye Leib Perlmuter and the heads of the community towards the erection of a monument in memory of the martyrs.

 

UNVEILING OF THE MONUMENT

 

A few hundred survivors of the Plotzk Jewish community assembled on October 23rd, 1949 and unveiled a monument in ever­lasting remembrance of the town's community. Representatives of nearby Jewish communities as well as of the authorities, were present. The Mayor of Plotzk, who was honored by unveiling the monument, noted that Jews had lived in Plotzk since 1237 and had always been loyal to the town.

 

The white stone monument was erected according to designs drawn by the Plotzk Jewish Architect Benjamin Arye Leib Perlmuter, in the shape of a tent. Its inscription reads "For these things I weep" (Lamentations, 1, 16) and a list of names of the 25 victims, whose bodies were exhumed there from their temporary graves, is added.

 

Representatives of the Polish army, the Central Committee of the Jewish survivors in Poland and of the Jewish combat organization delivered eulogies in memory of the victims.

 

 

 

 

To Continue...

 

Table of Contents

 

P.R.I.

 

Last updated Sep 22th, 2004