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Polska / śląskie

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


Province:śląskie / śląskie autonomiczne (before 1939)
County:pszczyński / pszczyński (before 1939)
Community:Pszczyna / Pszczyna (before 1939)
Other names:Pszczyn
Pels [j. jidysz]; פשצ'ינה [j. hebrajski]; Pless [j. niemiecki]
49.9856° N / 18.9482° E
49°59'08" N / 18°56'53" E

Location /

Pszczyna is the capital of Pszczyna County in Silesia. There are 37,000 inhabitants (according to data from 1998). The town lies in the Racibórz – Oświęcim Valley, on the river of Pszczynka (the right-bank tributary of Vistula).



Adam Marczewski /

Marsz śmierci - styczeń 1945 r. | Muzeum w Gliwicach

The first historical records mentioning the presence of Jews in Pszczyna date back to 1505. Most Jewish people settling in the town came there from Western Europe.

In 1526, Silesia came under the rule of the German Empire, which led to the implementation of various restrictions for Jews wishing to settle in the region. On 14 September 1559, Emperor Ferdinand I issued an edict on the expulsion of Jews from the hereditary lands of the Habsburgs, including Bohemia, Moravia, and Silesia.

The Thirty Years' War (1618–1648) led to depopulation of numerous Silesian cities; this in turn forced Emperor Ferdinand to relax his policy towards Jews. In 1627, he issued an edict allowing Jewish to come back to the places they had been displaced from, provided that they pay a special fee of 40,000 guildens. Thanks to the edict, in 1634 Jews could once again settle in Pszczyna.

Over the following years, Jews had to face a series of new restrictions and regulations regarding their rights to settle in Pszczyna and other Silesian localities. In 1742, during the First Silesian War, most of Silesia c


Local history

Izrael badacz

Rynek w Pszczynie - 1914 r. | nieznany

The settlement of Pszczynka is assumed to have already existed in the 10th century and was granted a charter in 1303. Since 1327 the town was under the Czech rule, suffering the same political fate as the whole Silesia. In 1742 it became a part of Prussia. At that time the town became an important craft center. In the interwar period, as a result of the plebiscite in 1921 Pszvzyna was incorporated into Poland. During World War II, in September 1939 Pszczyna was occupied by the German army. At the end of 1944 and the beginning of the 1945 the town witnessed “the death marches” of prisoners from the concentration camp in Auschwitz-Birkenau. Pszczyna was liberated by the Soviet Army in February 1945.


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