|LEDEC NAD SAZAVOU: Havlichuv Brod, Vysocina Region, Bohemia|
Synagogue: "(1736) fragments of the original ornamental vault decoration and of the painted background to the aron ha-kodesh as well as some of the inscriptions on the west wall were revealed under numerous coats of later paintwork." Source [February 2009]
US Commission No. CZCE000244
Earliest known Jewish community was 17th century. 1935 Jewish population was 35. Jews moved to big towns in second half of 19th century. Native town of mother of composer Gustav Mahler (Marie Herrmann, born 1837); native town of Frank Steiner (b. 1919, resident of Florida-USA), collaborator in distribution of Czech Torahs of Westminster Synagogue of London to congregations all over the world. The landmarked Jewish cemetery originated in early 17th century with last known Conservative or Reform/Progressive Jewish burial before 1943. The suburban hillside by water, separate but near other cemeteries, has no sign. Reached by crossing public municipal cemetery property, access is open to all via a broken masonry wall and a broken fence and non-locking gate. Size of cemetery before and after WWII: 0.1778 ha.
100-500 gravestones, 20-100 not in original locations with more than 75% toppled or broken, dates from 17th-20th centuries. The marble, granite, limestone, and gneiss flat shaped stones, finely smoothed and inscribed stones, flat stones with carved relief decoration, or multi-stone monuments, some with metal fences around graves, have Hebrew, German, and/or Czech inscriptions. The cemetery contains no known mass graves, but there is a pre-burial house. Praha Jewish community owns the property used for Jewish cemetery only. Adjacent properties are residential and municipal cemetery. Occasionally, private visitors and local residents stop. Vandalism occurred between 1945 and ten years ago (after 1965) and occasionally in the last ten years. Individuals or groups of non-Jewish origin or Jewish groups within country cleared vegetation occasionally and fixing of roof of mortuary in 1980s. [Information provided by Mrs. Jana Wolfava] No current care. Vandalism and security (uncontrolled access) is a serious threat. Pollution and vegetation are moderate threats. Vegetation overgrowth seasonally prevents access. Water drainage at the cemetery is a constant problem.
Jiri Fiedler, z"l, Brdickova 1916, 155 00 Praha 5; tel. 02/55-33-40 completed survey on 9 June 1992. Documentation: 1. Jan Herman: Jewish Cemeteries in Bohemia and Moravia (1980); 2. Notes of Statni Zidovske Muzeum Praha (1965); and 3. Censuses of 1724 and 1930. Other documentation was inaccessible. Fiedler visited site in June 1992. No interviews.
|Last Updated on Thursday, 19 February 2009 13:16|