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Jewish community dates from the early 18th century. The land was purchased in 1750. The cemetery at the edge of a forested slope and 500 m NE of the village is close to a path from the main road between Veselíčko and Zběšičky to Zavadil pond. 102 gravestones date from the founding to 1932. A mortuary at the entrance has been reconstructed based on preserved documents. anonymous source [February 2009]


US Commission No. CZCE000418

Alternate German name: Klein-Zbieschitz and Klein-Bieschitz. Zbesicky is located at 49º24 14º24 in Bohemia, Pisek, 16 km WSW of Tabor and 21 km ENE of Pisek. Cemetery: 450 meters NW of the chateau. Present town population is under 1,000 with no Jews.

  • Town: Obecni urad, 398 43 Bernartice u Milevska; tel. 0368/92391.
  • Regional: Jewish congregation: ZNO (Mrs. Jana Wolfova) Maislova 18, 110 01 Praha 1; tel. 02/2318664; and Pamatkovy ustav, jiznich Cech, nam. Premysla Otakara 34, 370 21 Ceske Budejovice; tel. 038/23792; and Zbynek Samsuk, Okresni Urad-Referat Kultury, ul.O.Sevcika 207, 397 01 Pisek; tel. 0362/4384 and Inspector for Care of Historical Monuments: Jiri Hladky at tel. 0362/2321.
  • Interested: Vaclav Bartos, Director, Prachenske Muzeum, Velke namesti 114, 397 24 Pisek; tel. 0362/4731 and 4732 and Statni Zidovske Muzeum, Jachymova 3, 110 01 Praha 1; tel. 02/231-06-34.

Earliest known Jewish community was second half of mid-18th century. 1930 Jewish population was 0 in Zbesicky, 9 in Bernartice, and 0 in Veselicko. Peak Jewish population was before mid-19th century, about 20 families. Later, Jews moved to big towns. Joint Zbesicky-Berartice-Veselick congregation existed after 1870 with synagogue in Veselick and cemetery in Zbesicky. Congregation disbanded after 1900. The Jewish cemetery originated in 1750 with last known Conservative Jewish burial in 1948. Veselick (Ger: Weselitschko) and Bernartice (Ger: Bernartitz), 5 km and 4 km away, used this landmarked cemetery between fields and woods, on an isolated hillside without 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 0.1029 ha.

About 100 stones date from 1750-20th century. The granite, limestone and sandstone flat shaped stones, finely smoothed and inscribed stones or multi-stone monuments have Hebrew, German and Czech inscriptions. Some have traces of painting on their surfaces. The cemetery contains no known mass graves but has a slightly damaged pre-burial house. Praha Jewish community owns cemetery. Adjacent properties are agricultural and forest. Occasionally, private visitors and local residents stop. Vandalism occurred occasionally 1945-1991. Restoration was done during 1990-1991. Now, there is occasional clearing or cleaning by individuals or occasional clearing or cleaning by authorities. Moderate threat: uncontrolled access and vandalism. Slight threat: weather erosion, pollution, vegetation, existing and proposed nearby development.

Ladislav Mertl, Mgr. of Geography, Kubanske namesti 1322/17, 100 00 Praha 10; tel. 02/743213 and Jiri Fiedler, z"l, Brdickova 1916, 155 00 Praha 5; tel. 02/55-33-40 completed survey on August 1992. Documentation: Jan Herman: Jewish Cemeteries of Bohemia and Moravia (1980) and Hugo Gold: Die Juden und die Judengemeinde... Bohemens 1934); Josef Kytka: Milevsko a jeho kraj 1940); Gustav A. Schimmer: Statistik des Judenthums 1873); 1983 letter of local mayor; and censuses of 1783, 1849, 1930, and 1991. Other documentation was inaccessible. The site was not visited. No interviews.

Last Updated on Saturday, 28 February 2009 01:58
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