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Polska / lubelskie

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Province:lubelskie / lubelskie (before 1939)
County:lubelski / lubelski (before 1939)
Community:Bychawa / Bychawa (before 1939)
Other names:Быхава [j. rosyjski]; ביחאווה [j. hebrajski]; בעכעוו [j. jidysz]
51.0148° N / 22.5352° E
51°00'53" N / 22°32'06" E


yarek shalom /

Bychawa – a city in eastern Poland, Lublin Province, Lublin County, Bychawa municipality. It lies on the Kosarzewka River, 30 km south of Lublin and 201 km southwest of Warsaw.



yarek shalom

The first Jews appeared in Bychawa in 1578 and the first mention of the Jewish community also comes from that period. An independent kehilla was founded towards the end of the 16th century. Seventeen Jews lived in Bychawa in 1675 Although the oldest records mentioning the synagogue in Bychawa date back to as late as 1717, a wooden synagogue is believed to have been erected here somewhere to the east of the market already in the 1580s or 1590s. It is also believed that not far away from the synagogue a Jewish cemetery was established , and, in the closing years of the century, an independent kehillah was set up. The Jewish community in Bychawa was decimated after the attack of Khmelnytsky’s army in the years 1648 and 1649 and revived once again in the 18th century. As early as 1780s people of Mosaic faith made over 30% of the entire town’s populations and were becoming more and more important in economic and social life of the town.

The number of adherents of Judaism started to increase in the second half of the 18th century. In 1765 there were 116 Jews in the town, and in 1778 a hundred more. The 193 Jews constituted 32% of the total population of 606 in 1787.

There were 14 Jewish and 4 Polish houses situated at the market square in 1779. The Jewish community began to play an increasingly important role in the town. Two Jews were members of a jury panel of five in the court in 1785. The Jewish community in Bychawa had a synagogue, mikvah and cemetery.

Jewish craftsmen were admitted to the guilds in 1816. In 1818 several Jewish tailors were working in the town, the most famous being Nuchim. Bychawa had 747 inhabitants including 437 Jews who constituted 58% of the total population of the town in 1830. In 1860 the number of inhabitants increased to 986 and the 718 Jews constituted 72%. By the end of the 1870s there were 2,212 people living in the town, 1,579 (74%) of them were Jews.

In 1866 the Jewish community was given lands in the town by an edict upon which they were allowed to build their houses. For instance, Szloma Szpira and Abram Sztejn were given 14 rods of land (1 rod ≈ 4.32 meters = 4.75 yards); Chaim Rubinowicz (120 rods); Abram Ehrlich and Lejba Ehrlich (18 rods); Szloma Klajman and Moszko Litman (10 rods); Srul Ehrlich (9 rods); Lejba Sztych and Agnesa Żminad (15 rods); Henryk Ehrlich and Józef K




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