PROSTEJOV: Moravia Print

Also see Olomouc. town website.

This city in the Olomouc Region is known for its fashion industry and special military forces based there. Situated on the northern edge of Hornomoravský úval basin at the foothill of Prostějovská pahorkatina upland in the eastern part of the Czech Republic, Prostejov sat on a key trade route connecting Europe's south with Europe's north and became an important center of culture, trade, and industry as a result. On its western side rises the Drahanská vrchovina highland. The town is flat with minimum elevation from 212 to 262 meters above sea level. The town began in 1141 as a small settlement of Prostějovice, deriving its name from Lord Prostěj. The first written records about the town, aka the Jerusalem of Hana, date from the first half of the 12th century. The landmarked historical town center has sites like 14th century Church of Holy Cross; the Prostějov Castle at Pernštýnské náměstí square completed in early 16th century in the Renaissance style and later reconstructed in early 20th century with a rich decorated portaland sgraffito decoration; Renaissance architecture of Italian builders of the 1520s and 1530s like the former town-hall completed in 1538 now housing the Museum of Prostějov; Art Nouveau Narodni dum (National House) built in 1905 -1907; and the new town-hall, erected in 1911 - 1914  with elements of Art Nouveau in the interior; a Plague Column; and many churches.

In the museum is a large permanent exhibition of clocks originally owned by the owner of a malt house, Bruno Winter, who feared persecution at the start of WWII. He donated his approximately 300 clocks to the museum. Little remains but a few dilapidated building of one of the biggest Jewish communities in the Olomouc region called the "Jerusalem of Hana". 1,400 Jewish residents in 1930 swelled to 1,650 in 1942 when the Nazis put the Jewish community on transports to Terezin. Only 84 returned, ten of them children. The Jewish community founding is unknown but in the mid-fifteenth century many Jews expelled from the royal towns were allowed to settle around the church, later annoying many Christian inhabitants. The Jewish quarter remained until 1990 when they demolished the buildings. The two synagogues remain: One owned by the Czechoslovak Hussite Church and the other owned by the Orthodox Church, bought tafter the War. (See New Synagogue) Of a number of other previously Jewish owned buildings, the Ehrenstein House was owned by the first factory owner in Prostejov. The Czech clothing industry is tightly connected with the history of town Prostejov and its Jews. The tailor's guild at Prostejov, founded in 1500, satisfied chiefly the needs of the town. The Jewish population could compete in acceptable prices to guild's masters whose clothes was relatively expansive. The first clothing factory founded in 1858 by the Mayer Mandl in Prostejov was the first big clothing factory in the entire Austria-Hungarian Empire. In the next decades, new clothing factories  prung up in Prostejov. with nearly 50 clothing factories registered at Prostejov just before WWI. In 1911 the clothing factories employed already 12,000 taylors. Rabbi Meir Eisenstadt, Rabbi Jonathan Eybeschutz, Rabbi Nathan Porges, Rabbi Moses Sofer, and Moritz Steinschneider (rabbi, bibliographer, orientalist), Edmund Husserl lived here. Scroll down to see photos of the ghetto. [February 2009]

"These acts of vandalism unfortunately occur all the time. Just yesterday [July 15, 2008] we got a report from the police about an attack by vandals on the cemetery in Prostějov. [photo] From my own experience, I can say that the vast majority of these cases are not anti-Semitic but rather just plain foolishness. The teenagers who do these things in most cases have never seen a Jew in their lives; they are just fools, stupid fools who need to express themselves. But I mentioned Prostějov where the situation is a little different. There it’s homeless and unemployed people who make some extra money for alcohol by stealing metal parts of the tombstones and selling them for a couple of crown in the nearest scrap metal depot.” Jaroslav Klenovský, the man in charge of South Moravian Jewish heritage [February 2009]

 

PROSTEJOV: (I) US Commission No. CZCE000165

Alternate names: Prostějov [Cz], Prossnitz [Ger], Prostich [Yid], Prościejów [Pol], Proßnitz, Prosznitz, Prosnitz. Prostejov: (I) is located in Morava-Prostejov at 49°28' N, 17°07' E , 15 km SW of Olomouc. Cemetery: old cemetery: 0.8 km SE, Chorazova Street. Present town population is 25,000-100,000 with than 10 Jews.

  • Town: Mayor Engineer Miroslav Zikmund, Mestsky Urad, Masarykovo namesti 797 46 Prostejov; tel. 0508/5713.
  • Local: Vlasta Kroupova, Mestsky Urad-Referat Kultury, Masarykovo namesti, 797 46 Prostejov; tel. 0508/4761.
  • Regional: PhDr. Yvona Vagnerova, Okresni Urad-Referat Kultury, 797 00 Prostejov; tel. 0508/4433.
  • Interested: Dr. Pavel Marek, director, Muzeum Prostejovska, Masarykovo nam, 797 00 Prostejov; tel. 0508/2286. Miloslav Peterka, Libusinka 14, 791 01 Prostejov; tel. 0 and Max Gross, Krizkovskeho 12, 797 00 Prostejov; tel. 0508/4792.

Earliest known Jewish community was 1445. 1900 Jewish population about 1,600. 1930 Jewish population was 1,442. Privilege was granted in 1584 to 1850-1919 self-standing political community. Max Fleischer (1841-1905), architect; Veit Ehrenstamm, factory owner; Edmund Husserl (1859-1938), philosopher; and family of writer Stefan Zweig lived here. The Jewish cemetery originated in 1801 with last known Conservative Jewish burial in 1908. Buried in the unlandmarked cemetery is Veit Ehrenstamm, factory owner. The flat urban cemetery has no sign or marker. Reached by turning directly off a public road, access is open to all via no wall, fence, or gate. The pre- and post-WWII size of cemetery is 0.7277 ha.

No stones, special memorial monuments, structures, or known mass graves. The municipality owns property used for recreation (park, playground, athletic field) and school. Adjacent properties are residential. Rarely, private visitors stop. Vandalism occurred during World War II. There is no maintenance.

Engineer-Arch Jaroslav Klenovsky, Zebetinska 13, 623 00 Brno; tel. 0 completed survey on 1 March 1992. Documentation: Hugo Gold: Die Juden und Judengemeinden Morava…(1928) and Jan Herman: Jewish Cemeteries in Bohemia and Moravia (1980). Other exisiting documentation was not used. No site visits or interviews occurred.
PROSTEJOV II:     US Commission No. CZCE000166

Cemetery: new cemetery: 0.8 km SE, Chorazova-Str. Caretaker with key is Jindriska Nabieralova, Brnenska 3130, 797 00 Prostejov; tel. 0. The unlandmarked Jewish cemetery originated in 1908 with last known Conservative Jewish burial in 1980s. The flat suburban, rural (agricultural) site, separate but near cemeteries, has a Czech sign or plaque mentioning the Holocaust and the Jewish community and inscriptions on pre-burial house. Reached by turning directly off a public road, access is open to all via a continuous masonry wall, a continuous fence, and locking gate surround. The approximate size of cemetery before WWII was 1.7581 and is now 0.6195 ha.

500-5000 stones in original location date from 20th century. The marble and granite flat shaped stones, finely smoothed and inscribed stones, multi-stone monuments or obelisks have Hebrew, German and Czech inscriptions. Some have iron decorations or lettering, with bronze decorations or lettering and/or metal fences around graves. The cemetery contains special memorial monuments to Holocaust victims and Jewish soldiers and a pre-burial house with wall inscriptions (custodian's house), but no known mass graves. Brno Jewish community owns the Jewish cemetery. Adjacent properties are agricultural. The boundaries are smaller than 1939 because of town cemetery. Occasionally, private visitors stop. Vandalism occurred occasionally 1945-1991. Regional/national authorities and Jewish groups within country do restoration annually. Brno Jewish congregation pays the regular caretaker. Slight threat: pollution, vegetation and vandalism.

Engineer-Arch Jaroslav Klenovsky, Zebetinska 13, 623 00 Brno; tel. 0 completed survey on 1 March 1992. Documentation: Hugo Gold: Die Juden und Juden Gemeinden Morava (1928) and Jan Herman: Jewish Cemeteries in Bohemia and Moravia (1980). Other exisiting documentation was not used. No site visits or interviews occurred.

Last Updated on Thursday, 26 February 2009 20:47