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Polska / mazowieckie

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


Province:mazowieckie / warszawskie (before 1939)
County:sierpecki / sierpecki (before 1939)
Community:Sierpc / Sierpc (before 1939)
Other names: שערפּץ [j.jidysz]; שרפץ [j. hebrajski]; Серпц [j. rosyjski]
52.8566° N / 19.6691° E
52°51'23" N / 19°40'08" E


Tomasz Kawski

Sierpc is a town in Mazowsze Province lying on the Raciąż Plain and close to the Dobrzyńskie Lake District and the Urszulewska Plain on Sierpienica River, near the point where it flows into the Skrwa River. It has 18.742 inhabitants (2007).

Distances:  Łódź 135 km, Płock 37 km, Warsaw 123 km



Tomasz Kawski

Rynek ( Plac bazarowy) | Nieznany

Jews began to settle in Sierpc in the early 18th century, with the earliest mention of their presence dating back to 1739. 

In 1793, all 13 merchants and all 22 stall-keepers living in the town were Jews.  The majority of artisans, 33 out of 35 tailors and 8 out of 9 bakers, were also Jewish.  Jews were also employed as tanners, hat-makers, tailors, butchers and furriers.  The town’s only doctor was also Jewish. 

In 1794, 50 Jewish artisans and minor merchants (1 comb-maker, 1 typesetter, 33 tailors, 2 furriers, 2 glaziers, 4 owners of haberdasheries and 1 gilder) belonged to guilds.  Three local surgeons, who were also Jewish, did not belong to guilds. 

During the Reformation (16th century), Maciej, a Sierpc barber, ostentatiously did not honor Catholic fasts and made Saturday his day of rest, attending the synagogue together with the Jews.  The cannons accused him of leading many people away from Christianity.  The 17th century saw the introduction of settlement limitations.  Jews were no longer allowed to live in the section of the town belonging to the cloister, which resulted in the creation of a Jewish section of town on the left bank of the river.  In 1809 it included 118 houses, in 1826 136 houses and in 1850 136 houses.  A Jewish district was created on June 9, 1830, and Jews living outside it were ordered to move into it by September 30, 1830.  In practice, the moves took until October 1833. 

By 1739, a formed Jewish community existed.  We know about its existence from a sentence passed by the Piotrków Tribunal, ruling on the case of the Jew Salomon from Sierpc.  Salomon stole silverware and the ciborium from the parish church in Jeżew.  He fled to Brandenburg during the investigation.  The court passed a sentence in 1739 ordering the Sierpc kehilla to erect a column outside the condemned man’s house and to surround it with a wall.  The column was to describe the events of his crime and sentencing in Polish and Latin.  In 1775 a synagogue and a cemetery, which lay outside the town, existed.  During the November Insurrection of 1830-1831, on March 15, 1831, 200 Jews and 600 Christians signed an oath of loyalty to Poland and the Polish nation. 

During the January Insurrection of 1863-1864, a


Local history

Tomasz Kawski

Widok ogólny - widokówka z końca XIX wieku | Nieznany

In the early Middle Ages, a town and a market-artisan settlement were located here.  The first written mention of Sierpc dates to 1065, when the town belonged to the Benedictine monastery in Mogilno. 

From the 12th century until 1322 it was owned by the bishops of Płock and then the Dukes of Masovia.  In 1322 it was granted town rights by Średzkie Law.  Following 1389, the town was located again, this time in accordance with Magdeburg Laws.

Toward the end of the 14th century, Sierpc became a private, feudal town, and in the 16th century it was made the seat of the district’s government.  In 1534 it was divided up among the Sierpski brothers, its owners at the time, and the Benedictine nuns.  Ownership changed again over the following years.  The town fell into decline during the Polish-Swedish wars of the 17th century.  In the 19th century industrial enterprises appeared, a brewery and a distillery in 1819, and linen and carpet factories in 1828.  In 1867 Sierpc again became the district seat. 

During World War I, a narrow-gauge rail connection was constructed from the area around Toruń to Nasielsk.  In the interwar period it was replaced by a regular railway and expanded, connecting Sierpc with Nasielsk, Toruń, Płock and Brodnica.

After World War II, there was significant investment in the food industry (grain elevators, feed production, breweries, malt, dairy, slaughterhouse), printing, machine and light industries.  Today, a number of valuable monuments survive, and there is an open-air ethnographic museum and the Museum of the Mazovian Countryside.

Geographic and administrative location

Until the 18th century, Kingdom of Poland Płock Province, Sierpc District
1793-1807 – Prussia
1807-1815 – Duchy of Warsaw
1815-1918 – Russia (Kingdom of Poland), Mława District (from 1867, Sierpc District)
1918-1939 – Poland, Warsaw Province, Sierpc District
1939-1945 – Germany, Third Reich, Provinz Ostpreußen (East Prussia Province) Regierungsbezirk Zichenau (Ciechanów District), Sierpc Municipality
1945-1975 – Warsaw Province
1975-1998 – Płock Province
Since 1999, Mazovia Province Sierpc District.


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