Polska / mazowieckie
|Synagogues, prayer houses and others||Cemeteries||Sites of martyrdom||Judaica in museums||Andere|
|Province:||mazowieckie / białostockie (before 1939)|
|County:||mazowiecki / ostrowski (before 1939)|
|Community:||Ostrów Mazowiecka / Ostrów Mazowiecka (before 1939)|
|Other names:||אוסטרוב מזובייצקה [j. hebrajski]; אוסטרובה [j. jidysz]; Острув-Мазовецка [j. rosyjski]|
yarek shalom /
Ostrów Mazowiecka – a city with county rights in central Poland, in Masovia Province. It lies 96 km north-east of Warsaw.
In 1434, the village of “Ostrovia” received the municipal charter of Duke of Mazowsze – Bolesław IV, which attracted Jewish merchants to the city. However, these merchants were not able to settle permanently. Ostrów Mazowiecka became a part of the Crown only in 1526, along with the entire region of Mazowsze. Meanwhile, the Polish nobility as well as the priesthood attempted to impose a ban on Jewish settlement in the Mazowsze region. Janusz I of Warsaw issued a decree which forbade non-Catholics--thus the Jews--to live in Warsaw and from working as tradesmen or craftsmen. Following Warsaw’s example, Ostrów Mazowiecka authorities introduced a similar ban. For this reason, Jews managed to settle in the city only in the 18th century.
Initially, the Jews who settled in the Ostrów Mazowiecka county were farmers. However, their farms were gradually taken over by non-Jewish farmers. As a result, the Jewish community migrated to urban settlements where they mainly engaged in the trades and crafts. According to official documents, in 1765 20 Jewish families dwelled in Ostrów Mazowiecka – 68 Jewish inhabitants of the town in total paid taxes. The Jewish population occupied 15 houses and 45 Jews lived in nearby villages. Seven families made a living as craftsmen, others entered retail trade or worked as lease holders. In 1792, the town had 867 inhabitants, 135 of them were Jews. The Jews worked in the trades, crafts lease holders. .
The Jews who settled in Ostrów Mazowiecka came from central Poland and Lithuania. The local Jewish community created a mosaic made of these cultures and languages which developed into a local Yiddish dialect, which combined characteristic elements of Polish and Lithuanian. The pronunciation of the dialect was more similar to the language spoken in the Northern part of Lithuania.
The first Jewish cemetery was established between today’s Broniewskiego and Targowa Streets, though the date it was originally founded remains unknown. It was likely established at the end of the 18th century, when a Jewish community settled in the city. Not a single headstone from this cemetery remains. In 1795, Jews from Ostrów Mazowiecka had their own religious community which initially included Jews from from Brok and Wyszków.
The number of Jews in the Northern Mazowsze as wel
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