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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:sochaczewski / sochaczewski (before 1939)
Community:Sochaczew / Sochaczew (before 1939)
Other names:סאכאטשעוו [j. jidysz]; סוכצ'ב [j. hebrajski]; Сохачев [j. rosyjski]
52.2293° N / 20.2383° E
52°13'45" N / 20°14'17" E

Location /

Sochaczew – a city with county rights in central Poland, in the Mazowieckie Province. It lies 55 km west of Warsaw, by the Bzura River.




Tomasz Kawski

The first information about Jewish presence in Sochaczew comes from fifteenth century. In 1426 – 1455 Wladyslaw, Duke of Mazovia, granted to Sochaczew Jews privileges which rules the legal proceedings with their Christian indebted landowners. Perhaps, all Jews lived only in Sochaczew. The oldest written information about the Jewish presence in the town comes from 1463. A Jewish doctor Felix lived and worked there.

In 1507, Sochaczew Jews paid 5 zlotys of coronation tax. From the early sixteenth century comes the information about Jews – Moses and Michael, who were custom officers in Sochaczew and Kłodawa .

In 1564 and 1570, local Jews lived in eight houses, including the synagogue. In 1578, 24 Jews paid head tax. The local Jewish community expanded rapidly, and, in 1599, Jews lived in 20 houses, also 16 bailiffs lived there. In 1602, they had 20 houses, a hospital and a synagogue, and the number of bailiffs dropped to 4. Despite the relatively small population its members stand out resourcefulness and entrepreneurship.

The main occupation of the Sochaczew Jews was trade of leather, tallow and wool. They bought materials from people who comes to the town, and then exported it to major cities and sold with considerable profit. Sochaczew craftsmen protested against this practice because they had problems with procuring necessary products. Fights between Jewish and Christian communities took place all the time. In 1602, the Jews refused to pay municipal taxes on an equal conditions as other residents. In July 1617, the Sochaczew Jews were accused of murdering a Christian child. Many of them fled the town to save himself from persecution. These one who stayed were executed.

In 1618, a Jewish settlement burnt down. After this incident townspeople managed to obtain from the king the privilege which forbid Jews to settle in Sochaczew. However, it has been not implemented. Many Jews, whose houses burnt down, remained in the town. They had 20 houses in 1630. In 1633, Wladyslaw IV granted privilege allowing to own houses, squares, gardens, and to use the existing synagogue and cemetery .

In the second half of the sixteenth century, in Mazowsze region, increased the number of anti-Jewish instances. Their background, during Reformation and Counter-Reformation,


Local history

Tomasz Kawski

The castellan’s town was first mentioned in 1138. Bolesław Krzywousty, the King of Poland, died here. Sochaczew was a very important fortified town of Masovia at that time.

In 1286 it was besieged during the Lithuanian invasion. In 1294 the Duke Kazimierz II died in the battle against the Lithuanians here. From the 14th to 15th century the town seated the Dukes of Masovia. In 1368 Sochaczew obtained its town charter.

In 1410 the Polish Army heading for the Battle of Grunwald against Teutonic Knights crossed Sochaczew. In 1476 Sochaczew along with Masovia joined The Crown. In the 15th and 16th centuries the town was a very important centre of commerce and craft. 

In the mid-16th century Sochaczew was destroyed by the Swede and Rakoczy’s Army.

Since 1795 Sochaczew was under Prussian rule, since 1807 it transferred to the Duchy of Warsaw and since 1815, it belonged to the Kingdom of Poland (Congress Poland). During World War I , from December 1914 to July 1915 a German-Russian front line crossed Sochaczew. The town was deserted by its inhabitants and seriously damaged at that time. 

During World War II, in September 1939, there was a lot of heavy fighting between the Polish and German Armies near Sochaczew. It was the final stage of the battle of Bzura.

Polish guerrilla groups were active near Sochaczew at that time. In January 1945 Sochaczew was liberated by the Soviet Army.



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