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Polska / śląskie

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


Province:śląskie / krakowskie (before 1939)
County:żywiecki / żywiecki (before 1939)
Community:Żywiec / Żywiec (before 1939)
Other names:Zhivitz [j. jidysz]; Saybusch [j. niemiecki]
49.6905° N / 19.1840° E
49°41'25" N / 19°11'02" E


Izrael badacz

Żywiec is the capital of Żywiec County in Silesia. It is inhabited by 32,000 people, according to data provided in 2004. Being situated in the picturesque Żywiec Valley, the city is surrounded by mountain ranges: in the west – the Silesian Beskids (Beskid Śląski), in the north – the Little Beskids (Beskid Mały), in the east and south by the Żywiecki Beskids (Beskid Żywiecki). Żywiec lies upon the Soła at the mouth of the Koszarawa and upon the Żywieckie Lake (Jezioro Żywieckie).



Adam Marczewski /


In 1626, Queen Konstancja banned Jews from settling down in Żywiec ("de non tolerandis Iudaeis"). Consequently, Jews started to settle down in districts of Isep, Sporysz, and Zabłocie. An influx of Jews to Żywiec started again at the end of the 17th century. Most of them ran inns in the town and local villages. 

In 1797, emperor Francis II renewed the ban on the Jewish settlement in Żywiec, emphasizing that Jews already born in the town could live there if they wanted. For this reason, the Jewish settlement concentrated mostly in a suburban village called Zabłocie. The inhabitants of  Żywiec took so much care of not letting any Jew be born in the town that even a railway station was built in Zabłocie, so that no Jewish baby was born in Żywiec during journey.

In 1820, Zabłocie was inhabited by 32 Jews. Following establishing  an autonomous Jewish community  in Żywec-Zabłocie in 1864,  an elementary school for both Jewish and Christian children was opened in 1874. In 1891 another Jewish community was established in Milówka. The Jewish population in Zabłocie in 1914 numbered 500. .


Local history

Adam Marczewski

Żywiec, widok z wieży konkatedry na Łyskę, koniec XIX - początek XX wieku | T. Zamojski

Żywiec was founded by 1327, near an old market settlement in Stary Żywiec. From 1420 to1428 there were Hussites in Żywiec. The town initially belonged to Dukes of Cieszyn, then to Dukes of Oświęcim, and since 1456 to King Kazimierz IV Jagielonczyk. It was later granted to P.Komorowski and since 1624 it belonged to the Vasa dynasty and since 1673 to the Wielopolscy dynasty. In the 16th-18th centuries Żywiec was an important center of both craft (brewing, distilling industry, and cloth-making) and trade (of copper, lead, salt, wood). Since 1772 Żywiec was under Austrian rule. In 1822 the family of Charles Habsburg came into ownership of Żywiec. In 1856 the famous brewery was established as the biggest and the most modern brewery in Poland.



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