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Polska / małopolskie

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Province:małopolskie / krakowskie (before 1939)
County:tarnowski / tarnowski (before 1939)
Community:Ryglice / Ryglice (before 1939)
Other names:Riglitz [j. jidysz]; ריגליץ [j. hebrajski]; Ryglice [j. niemiecki]
49.8803° N / 21.1374° E
49°52'49" N / 21°08'14" E


Miasto Ryglice leży w powiecie tarnowskim w województwie małopolskim.



Dorota Szczepanowicz /

Perhaps the earliest reference to Jews in Ryglice comes from the legend of the town’s founding. According to the legend, the name Ryglice derives from the town’s wealthiest Jew, Rygel. Yet the legend’s veracity is dubious, since the earliest documents related to Ryglice contain no references to a Jewish population.

Jews first settled in the town in the first or the second half of the 14th century. It is believed that Jews had been living in Ryglice since Kazimierz Wielki (Casimir III the Great) granted it town privileges. It was he who allegedly issued privileges allowing for Jewish settlement, however, there are no documents to confirm this.

The records of the Ryglice parish mentioned Jews in 1699. On Sundays and during holidays, a Jew of unknown name used to build a stall near the bell tower where vodka and beer were sold. Consequently, the town’s priest, Sebastian Pawlikowicz, was ordered to remove the Jew, so as not to profane the tower. The man must have been on good terms with the priest to be allowed to sell alcohol in the bell tower to begin with. Unfortunately, the documents give us no insight into how the history ended. What is known, however, is that a new priest of Ryglice, Walentyn Dymalski, was appointed the same year.

A new wave of Jews from Germany arrived in Ryglice toward the end of the 18th century. The settlers probably came from Germany. In 1830 there were 375 Jews living in Ryglice. The subsequent rabbis in the town during the 18th century were Towia Gutman (who studied in the yeshiva in Lublin), Gutman’s son-in-law Nachum-Cwi Horowitz Tencer, Tencer’s son Abraham Abba Horowitz, and Tencer’s grandson Jakub Icchak Horowitz. Jakub Icchak Horowitz was also a rabbi in Limanowa. He visited Ryglice during holidays.

A peasant uprising took place in Ryglice in 1846. Rumors about planned murders of peasants and Jews spread throughout the region, frightening the inhabitants of Ryglice. Two Jewish bakers named Mendel Fenchel and Mojżesz Klappholz as well as Izrael Salamon informed the entire surrounding area about the situation. As a result, on 10 February 1846 arrests were made and the rectory of the priest Józef Orłowicz was searched. The county governor rewarded the three Jews for their report. The report of the hearing of the Chevau-légers Wachtmeister from Ryglice, Antoni Kopecki, dates to the same


Local history

Dorota Szczepanowicz /

Rynek w Ryglicach | Dorota Szczepanowicz

First mentions of Ryglice date back to 1301. In the mid-14th century, there was already a parish. In the same period, the village noted substantial economic development, which was related to its location on the route to the Kingdom of Ruthenia. At that time, probably first Jewish settlers arrived, who later largely contributed to the development of local trade and crafts.

It remains unknown when Ryglice received a city charter. Since 1432, there was a village council, and a market square operated, where fairs were held every second Wednesday. At that time, Mikołaj from Burzyn was the owner of Ryglice; in the 15th century, the town partly belonged to the Sulimczyk family, which had their estates in the area. In 1581, Piotr Łyczko owned Ryki.

During the Swedish Invasion (1655-1660), the town was plundered and partly destroyed. The local peasants moved into fight with the invader. However, the Swedes were relieved by the Prince of Transylvania György Rákóczi II. Ryglice were seized again and demolished. The church was burnt down, the inhabitants murdered and an economic decline followed.

In 1768, the area was of the centres of the Bar Confederation. In 1772, Ryglice was incorporated to Austria. It no longer had the status of a city and was merely a village which belonged to the Potocki family. Kazimierz Leśniowski bought it in 1803.

A noticeable economic developed of the settlement could be observed from 1815 and the village regained its city charter in 1824. A market was held each Friday, and once a month a fair was. At the end of the 19th century, first industrial plants were established, among others a water sawmill with a mill, owned by Stefania Szczepańska. At that time also the old roads from Tuchów through Ryglice to Jodłowa and from Janiny to Swoszowa were extended. Prior to 1914, a branch of the Stefczyk’s Credit Union and a Machinery Ring operated in the town. Also underground and semi-legal patriotic associations emerged, such as the Bartoszowe Squads or the Polish Rifle Squads. In 1904, the owner of Ryglice invited the Sisters of St. Dominic.

World War I brought huge damages to the town and its surroundings, as the front line was settled there. The Russian army entered Ryglice in November 1914 and occupied the town until May 1915. On Christmas Eve 1914, a great batt




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