Monday, May 10, 2010

Polish villagers clean up Jewish cemetery

(hat tip: Eliyahu Hershfeld)

From the Jerusalem Post:

Krakow – A neglected Jewish cemetery in southeastern Poland got a much-needed clean-up last week when a dozen non-Jewish Polish villagers banded together to clear debris and rubbish that had accumulated at the site in recent years.

The burial ground is located in the village of Sokolow Malopolski, which lies some 24 kilometers north of Rzeszow. It dates back to the 18th century and was in use until the local Jewish community was destroyed by the Nazis in World War II.

The initiative was organized by a local civic group, the Sokolow Region Lovers Society, and was carried out in cooperation with the Foundation for the Preservation of Jewish Heritage in Poland, which is responsible for safeguarding thousands of Jewish cultural, historical and religious sites throughout the country.

Jews first settled in Sokolow Malopolski more than 300 years ago. At the end of the 19th century, a Jew served as mayor of the town, which was also home to prominent rabbis such as Meilech Weichselbaum and the hassidic rebbe Aba Hippler.

On the eve of the Holocaust, Sokolow Malopolski was home to more than 1,350 Jews, most of whom were murdered by the Germans in the Belzec death camp.

Click here to read the entire article.

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