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Brzeg Dolny

Polska / dolnośląskie

Synagogues, prayer houses and others Cemeteries Sites of martyrdom Judaica in museums Andere

Summary

Province:dolnośląskie / inne (before 1939)
County:wołowski / Wohlau (before 1939)
Community:Brzeg Dolny / Dyhernfurth (before 1939)
Other names:Dyhernfurth [j.niemiecki],
 
GPS:
51.2730° N / 16.7087° E
51°16'22" N / 16°42'31" E

Location

Wojciech Wojtasiak

Province: Lower Silesia, county: Wołów, municipality: Brzeg Dolny. It is situated on the edge of Wysoczyzna Rościsławicka (height) and Wrocławcka Proglacial Valley, on the Odra River, to the north-west of Wrocław.
 

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History

Wojciech Wojtasiak

The permanent residence of Jews in Brzeg Dolny (Dyhernfurth) began as late as the 17th c. It resulted directly from the establishment of a Jewish printing house by Sabataj Bass in 1688, when he received permission to set up his establishment in the town. Its staff comprised Polish and Czech Jews (from Krakow, Prague, and Wodzisław). But there were also Jews coming from Vienna to Brzeg Dolny, because they were expelled from there and the count of Jaroschin thought it's good for the young town if this Jews settle there.
In 1937 the administration of the town urged all Jews to leave the city and to sell their property. In 1689, Bass printed his first materials. In 1694, the number of staff was increased to 48 employees (altogether 13 Jewish families). The books produced in the Brześć printing house were sold in Wrocław to Jewish traders attending fairs; they would distribute them further among Jewish readers. In 1708, the building of the printing house burnt down but was promptly rebuilt. In 1712, Bass and his son were arrested, being charged with dissemination of slanders against the Christian religion. Reputedly, they were included in a book printed by Bass’s establishment – a work by Nathan Hannover, entitled The Gates of Zion (Sha'are Zion). In 1720-1724, the printing shop was closed down. It re-launched its operation in 1725; its staff was made up of 47 people (altogether 10 Jewish families). In the 1830s, Nathan Kohen (known as Nathan Berel), a resident of Kostrzyń, became the owner of the company. From 1772, the Bass printing house delivered the official newspaper “Dyhernfurther Privilegierte Zeitung” – the first publication printed in German, using the Hebrew font, with many Hebrew phrases.
 

The origins of the Jewish community in Brzeg Dolny are closely liked to the Bass’s business activity. The first Jews in town worked in his printing house or were related to its staff.
 

From the early-19th century on, the situation of the Brześć establishment deteriorated mainly due to competition from companies based in Frankfurt (Oder), Warsaw, and Galicia. In 1812, the local town hall allowed the Jews to trade, as it would provide them with an additional source of income. In 1834, the last book was published in the printing house; it closed down permanently in 1840.
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Local history

Wojciech Wojtasiak

The first record of the Brieg settlement was included in the Land Book of the Duchy of Wrocław in 1353. In 1941, a ferry service across the Odra was launched. The town was populated mostly by fishermen and raftsmen. From 1526 it belonged to the House of Hapsburg. During the Thirty Years' War (1618-1648) the town was extensively devastated. In 1663, it was granted the town charter by the Emperor Leopold I under the name of Dyhernfurth. From 1742 the town was part of Prussia. In 1806, a small river shipyard was built in the town. In 1873, a railway bridge was built across the Odra, which connected Wrocław and Głogów.
 

During WWII, in 1939, Germans undertook the construction of Anorgana G.m.b.H. chemical plant in Dyhernfurth. It manufactured chemical weapons, such as tabun and sarin. The workers comprised the prisoners of two branches of the Gross-Rossen concentration camp. In January 1945, Germans launched the elimination of the camps by executing more than 2,000 prisoners. The town was captured by the Soviet Army in January 1945.
 
After the war the town’s names was changed to Brzeg Dolny and it was deprived of its town rights. In 1954, it regained them.

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