|RADNICE: Rokycany, Bohemia|
"The synagogue in Radnice (ca 1780) is now owned by a nature preservation society." Source [February 2009]
photos. The Jewish settlement dates from the begining of the 16th century, probably because many Jews left Pilsen in 1504. The community ended in 1935. Most of the Jewish ghetto is preseved in its original houses. The Baroque 1781 synagogue is situated in the middle of the town. Several privileges for the Jews (including the construction of synagogue) were granted. A preserved women gallery in this synagogue exists because the building was saved at the last minute from a car repair service 1945-1992. The synagogue is associated with Rabbi Isak Mayer Weis- Wise (1819 in Lomnicka -1900 in Cincinnati), who lived here from 1843 to 1846 and later founded Reformed Judaism in America. He established the Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati. A Czech ecology group in Radnice supports the reconstruction and proper use of the synagogue that reopened in 2001. This group also is preparing a tourist route including a visit of the Jewish cemetery with tombstones from the 18th century. cemetery photos and contact information [February 2009]
US Commission No. CZCE000289
Alternate German name: Radnitz. Radnice is located in Bohemia, Rokycany at 49°51' N, 13°36' E, 12 km N of Rokycany and 13 miles ENE of Plzeň (Pilsen). Cemetery: 1700 meters ESE of square. Present town population is 1,000-5,000 with no Jews.
Earliest known Jewish community was 18th century. 1930 Jewish population was 24. Jewish congregation was established probably in mid-18th century or in second half of 18th century; 10 families were permitted in the town in first half of 19th century. 278 people were in area of congregation in 1890 when Jews moved to big towns. Independent congregation disbanded in 1935. Isaac Mayer Wise [originally Weis] (1818-1900 in Cincinnati), founder of American Reform Judaism, officiated as rabbi in Radnice from 1843-1846. The unlandmarked cemetery originated in 18th century with last known Conservative Jewish burial in 1930s. Between fields and woods, the isolated hillside has no sign or marker. Reached by turning directly off a public road, access is open to all via a broken masonry wall and non-locking gate. The pre- and post-WWII size of cemetery is 0.2093 ha.
20-100 stones, most in original location, date from 1763-20th century. The marble, granite and sandstone flat shaped stones, finely smoothed and inscribed stones, flat stones with carved relief decoration or multi-stone monuments have Hebrew, German and Czech inscriptions. Some have metal fences around graves. The cemetery contains no known mass graves or structures. Plzen Jewish community owns the Jewish cemetery. Adjacent properties are agricultural and forest. Frequently organized individual tours on marked tourist route and private visitors stop. Vandalism occurred probably occasionally in 1945-1991 with no maintenance. Moderate threat: weather erosion and vandalism.
Dr. Peter Braun, Komenskeho 43, 323 13 Plzen; tel. 019/52-15-58 and Rudolf Loewy, Jesenicka 33, 323 23 Plzen; tel. 019/52-06-84 and Jiri Fiedler, z"l, Brickova 1916, 155 00 Praha 5; tel. 02/55-33-40 completed survey on 2 November 1992. Documentation: censuses of 1724, 1750, 1830, and 1930; Jahrbuch fur die israelische Cultusgemeinden Bohemens (1894-1895); Jan Herman: Jewish Cemeteries of Bohemia and Moravia (1980); notes of Statni Zidovske Muzeum Praha; and Sefton Temkin: "I.M.Wise, A Biographical Sketch" in: The Papers of Isaac Mayer Wise 1981. The site was not visited. V. Wainar and Engineer M. Jaros in Radnice in 1992 were interviewed.
|Last Updated on Thursday, 26 February 2009 12:13|