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Translator name :Julia Skrzypczak

After the German invasion of Poland, the Nazi army occupied Częstochowa already on 3 September 1939. On Monday, 4 September a pogrom called took place (this date is known as “Bloody Monday”). Under false accusations that a Jew fired at German soldiers, a slaughter started. Within three days 990 Poles and 150 Jews were executed. The first victim was Naftali Tanenboum, owner of the button factory at 7 Piłsudskiego Street. Mass executions were combined with numerous cases of beating, raping and robbing of Jewish property[5.1].

In September 1939 Germans devastated the Old Synagogue, and on 25 December they set fire to the New Synagogue. Meanwhile, a Judenrat was established in Częstochowa consisting of: Leon Kapiński (president), Zelig Rotbard (vice president), Maurycy Kapiński (work office), Bernard Kurland (representative of the work office), Dawid Nosen Berliner (finance office), Natan Gerichter (finance office), Samuel Katz (member), Szmuel Niemirowski (member), Kanyetzfaler (member), Weinrib (member), Maurycy Galster (member), Leib Bromberg (member), counselor Szymon Pohorile (member), Dawid Boszykowski(member) and the counselor Yirmiyahu Gitler (member). Józef Bruniatowski and Mendel Goldberg were also members of the Judenrat but they resigned after three weeks[5.2].

At first, a massive displacement of all Jews from Upper Silesia to the General Government was planned, but after the refusal of the authorities of the General Government it was decided to establish ghettos, where the Jewish people would be gathered and selected in order to gain cheap manpower[5.3].

Before the creation of Jewish district the Judenrat had to develop its activity in order to cope with the demands of every now and then issued new edict of German authorities. In December 1940 the Judenrat consisted of 21 departments, in which 676 higher and lower officials of administration staff were employed. German authorities commanded the Judenrat to initiate the inspection of traffic, which was supposed to protect the offices and warehouses of the Judenrat, and also take care of order and peace in the street and control whether Jews obeyed the curfew. At first the traffic inspection consisted of 50 members but it grew quickly and in December 1940 it already had 80 people (they did not have uniforms). A Jewish police also was established in Częstochowa, which before the ghetto liquidation comprised 250 members (in uniforms and with truncheons). Tsederbaum was the commander of the traffic inspection and Galster became the commander of the police. After combining the inspection with the police, Germans arrested Galster, and Parasolka was ordained as new police commander. 

On 9 April 1941 Waendler, the Stadthauptmann of Częstochowa announced an ordinance (dated 7 April) about the establishment of a closed Jewish district in town. The process of resettling the Jews was extremely hastened and by 17 April Jewish policemen were standing on the ghetto borders not to let anyone out without special permission. The final closing of the ghetto was on 23 April 1941[5.4].

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[5.1] B. Orenstayn, Czestochowa Jews in the Nazi Era, in: Czenstochov; A new Supplement to the Book “Czenstochover Yidn“ (Częstochowa, Poland), ed. E.C. Singer, (1958) [online] http://www.jewishgen.org/yizkor/Czestochowa/cze039.html [Accessed 15 April 2014].

[5.2] B. Orenstayn, Czestochowa Jews in the Nazi Era, in: Czenstochov; A new Supplement to the Book “Czenstochover Yidn” (Częstochowa, Poland), ed. E.C. Singer, (1958) [online] http://www.jewishgen.org/yizkor/Czestochowa/cze039.html [Accessed 15 April 2014].

[5.3] K. Świerkosz, Żydzi w obozach hitlerowskich na Śląsku Opolskim podczas II wojny światowej, in: 45. Rocznica powstania w getcie warszawskim (1943–1988), materiały z sesji popularnonaukowej, (1988).

[5.4] A. Rutkowski, “Zagłada Żydów w dystrykcie radomskim”, in: Biuletyn Żydowskiego Instytutu Historycznego (1955), 83.

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