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Coat of arms of Bílina

also used cemetery at Most before 1891. Thieves dug up graves looking for gold they believed was there leaving open graves with bones strewn about. [February 2009]

BILINA: US Comm. no. CZCE000296

Alternate German name: Bilin. Bilina is in Teplice, Bohemia at 50÷33 13÷46, 11 km SSW of Teplice and 22 km SW of Usti nad Labem. Location of cemetery: 600 meters WSW of the main square. Present town population is 5,000 to 25,000 with probably under 10 Jews.

  • Town: Mestsky urad, 418 01 Bilina, tel. 0417/92-57-03. Local government, offices responsible for site: Mestsky urad, oddeleni kultury, 418 01 Bilina.
  • Regional: 1. Okresni urad, referat kultury, (comp: dr. Zamrazil), Husitska 2, 415 00 Teplice, tel. 0417/6421 and 2. Zidovska nabozenska obec, Lipova 25, 415 01 Teplice, telephone at home of Chaim Klein is 0417/265- 80.
  • Interested: Statni Zidovske muzeum, Jacymova 3, 110 01 Praha 1, tel. 02/231-06-34 or 231-07-85 and Oblastni muzeum, Zamecke namesti 14, 415 01 Teplice, tel. 0417/2135 or 5179.
  • Caretaker is the keeper of the horticultural farm beside the cemetery and holds the key.

D

ate of earliest known Jewish community in town: 1860's, "as modern community." 1930 Jewish population (census): 74. Bilina allegedly was the seat of notable Jewish community in the 16th century (absence of records about that time). Scanty Jewish population (about 5 families) in the 18th century. Only one family was permitted in the first half of the 19th century. New settling of Jews after 1848. The first prayer-room was the 1860's; independent congregation was established in 1872. Expulsion of Jews by the Nazis occurred in 1938. The Jewish cemetery was established in 1892 with last known Conservative or Reform Jewish burial before 1939 but in 1942-1945 Soviet prisoners of war were buried. The cemetery is not protected. The suburban hillside, separate but near other cemeteries, has no sign. The cemetery is reached by turning crossing a private horticultural farm. Access to the cemetery is open with permission via a broken masonry wall and a displaced gate that does not lock. Size of cemetery before and after WWII is 0.27 hectares.

About 100 gravestones are 1-20 gravestones in original location and 20- 100 not in original location. 25-50% of surviving stones are toppled or broken. Stones removed from the cemetery were "stolen". The cemetery has a separate section for the WWII Soviet prisoners of war. The oldest known gravestone is 1890s plus one sandstone-gravestone of "old types", perhaps transferred from another cemetery. Tombstones date from the 19th and 20th centuries. The cemetery has one sandstone tombstone and otherwise all granite tombstones and memorial markers that are finely smoothed and inscribed stones, multi-stone monuments, and obelisks, some with bronze decorations and/or lettering and/or metal fences around graves. Inscriptions are in Hebrew and/or German. The cemetery probably contains Soviet prisoner-of-war unmarked mass graves. The municipality probably owns the property now used for Jewish cemetery purposes and crops. Properties adjacent are agricultural and a municipal cemetery. Rarely, private visitors stop. The cemetery was vandalized during World War II. No maintenance or care. Within the limits of the cemetery is a pre-burial with a gilded Star of David on the ceiling. Security (uncontrolled access) and vandalism are very serious threats; there are open graves with bones lying about. Weather erosion, pollution, vegetation and incompatible development are moderate threats. Vegetation overgrowth is a constant problem, disturbing graves.

Jan Marek, Na hranici 208, 405 05 Decin, for messages, tel., and fax: 0412/23-662 or 28- 090 and Jiri Fiedler, z"l, Brdickova 1916, 155 00 Praha 5, tel. 02/55-33-40 completed the survey on 29 November 1992 using the following documentation: 1. Censuses of 1793, 1830, and 1930; 2. Die Juden and Judengemeinden Bohmens (1934); and 3. V. Pesak: article in: Rocenka Spolecnosti pro dejiny Zidu...year 7, 1935. Other documentation exists but was inaccessible for the survey: exact record numbers 35, 36 in town archives in Bilina. J. Marek visited in April 1992 and interviewed Mr. and Mrs. Chaim Klein from the Jewish Congregation [see above] and the gardener/neighbor in Bilina in 1992.

Last Updated on Saturday, 28 February 2009 16:37
 
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