Alternate names: Gąbin [Pol], Gombin [Yid, Ger, Rus], Gambin, Russian: Гомбин. גאָמבין-Yiddish. 52°24' N, 19°44' E, 10 miles S of Płock (Plotzk). Yizkors: Gombin: dos lebn un umkum fun a yidish shtetl in Poyln (New York, 1969);Gombin Memories (Israel, 1999); and Pinkas ha-kehilot; entsiklopediya shel ha-yishuvim le-min hivasdam ve-ad le-aher shoat milhemet ha-olam ha-sheniya: Poland vol. 4: Warsaw and its region. [May 2009]
US Commission No. 000616: The US Commission is not finished rechecking this file .
Had been destroyed by the Germans in 1943. According to testimonies we found, the fence stones were used to build a road, a tank trench was built in the northern part of the graveyard, and most of the tombstones were removed for curbstones in the streets. They were dumped in cement in a bridge in the center of town. Some other matzevot are in Polish yards and houses. In cooperation with the local Polish Land Lovers Association, we are trying now to overcome the destruction, fence the cemetery, protect it from future possible development, redeem the matzevot from where they are and return them, making a memorial monument inside the holy place. We already managed to mark the boundaries of the cemetery in cooperation with the local Conservator in Plock. Also, more than 200 matzevot were removed from the streets of Browarna and are safe now in a local Contractor warehouse. The first steps have been taken towards completing the mission. We have support, both financially and logistically, from Zygmunt Nissenbaum's fund; and our project will be accomplished with its assistance. Jews from nearby small towns and villages, such as Dobrzykow, Ilowo, Sannicki and more were also buried here. Yizkor. [August 2003]
Jews were recorded first in the 1507 census in conjunction with the coronation of Sigismund I but probably lived there prior to that date. Most Jews was involved in small trade and crafts and some in buying and exporting skins. The increasing role of Jews in the economy worried Christian merchants and craftsmen. In 1576, the shoemakers petitioned Polish king Zygmunt III to prohibit Jews from buying skins from surrounding peasants. Jews could purchase them only at a town market at the end of morning Catholic mass. The decree held until 1582 when Stefan Batory forbade Jews from acquiring hides and tallow in the city or surrounds. During the Swedish war, Stefan Czarniecki's pogrom killed and injured many Jews including scholar Rabbi Abele Gombiner. As the city revived in the early 18th century, the local Jewish community developed, but the Jews only could reside in a separate part of the city. In 1710, a wooden synagogue was built. Jews continued in small trade and crafts, but several worked in agriculture, mainly orchards on land belonging to German colonists. In court documents in Warsaw, records reveal a complaint made in 1690 by the Christian merchants about the Jewi Jakub Gostynin and his son Yochama about surgery. From 1823 until 1862, a ghetto existed. The son of Abraham Abele Gombiner, Chaim ha-Levy, later rabbi of Kalisz, author of "Magen Abraham" ( "Shield of Abraham"), a commentary on the first part of the Shulchan Aruch, was born there. In 1914 Rabbi Gombiner founded a group of Jewish intellectuals and a library. In 1917, during the self-government election, Jewish candidates won twelve of the eighteen seats. During this time, chief rabbi was Jehuda Gąbin Goldsmith, visionary of the Zionist movement. In 1927, he was replaced by Rabbi Nutkowitza. The synagogue was built as a timber-framed rectangle. Over the entrance were two onion-shaped domed towers, each with a flag. On the truss was the dates 1710 and 1893, the years of construction and renewal of the synagogue. The album Old Jewish Art in Poland by Izabella Rejduch-Samków and Jan Samek estimates that the facade of the synagogue was inspired by the baroque architecture of churches. Anna Kubiak's study "Jewish historical architecture in Poland" (Jewish Bulletin of Institute History, 1953) states: "(....) structures in the contour Cerkiewne. The synagogue roof was originally covered with shingles and later with sheet iron. The sanctuary had a women's gallery supported on pillars called babińcem. Six steps led to the centrally located bimah decorated by a roof supported by four pillars. A Polish eagle topped the brass chandelier. Candlesticks were used before 1772. A baroque aron ha-kodesh, apparently carved by knife only was famous. The building avoided fires that occurred fro time to time in the city. The synagogue survived the bombing and fire during September 1939, but September 21, 1939 was its end. In the interwar period, Jews had clothing, leather, footwear and agricultural products shops and stalls. Among the 488 artisans 198 were Jews. In 1935 Jewish craftsmen included 65 tailors, 7 caps manufacturers, 28 shoemakers, locksmiths 5, 10 blacharzy, 4 carpenters producing furniture, 4 and 5 builders and hairdressers. Some Jews owning furmanki engaged in transport. Pine forests enjoyed visitors. Some Jews had guest houses and inns. Despite this, the financial situation of a large part of the Jewish community was poor. Many Jews were living in poverty, with the assistance of charity. Difficult living conditions forced many to emigrate. From 1920 to 1935, 47 Jewish families and 127 individuals left, three amilies and 31 people to Palestine. Despite the poverty, their cultural and political life was rich. In the 1930s, a boycott of Jewish shops and craft enterprises ensued. Consequently, the diminished kahal budget aid increased the suffering of the poorest. Soon after the Nazis occupied the city in 1939, Jews were put into forced labor in the trenches. On September 21, 1939, the Jewish population of gathered in the market. The Nazis brutalized the Jews; some were killed. The synagogue fire spread to a house of prayer and nearby buildings. The fire consumed the Torah, the prayer books and all synagogue equipment. Several Jews in the burning building miraculously escaped death. After this, the Nazis accused Jews of setting the fire, imposing forced contributions. Repression increased daily. Stopped during the night by a German soldier, a Jewess was raped and murdered in cruel ways. Her mother died shortly afterwards. In early October 1939, Jews were ordered to wear yellow Mogen Davids. All men had to sign up to work three days a week for the Third Reich. A Judenrat, headed by Moshe Want, was created. Initially, the ghetto was "open", allowing its 2,100 residents to purchase food from local farmers. Men and women were forced to work for the occupiers and German companies. Early in 194, the Jews were deported to labor camps in Konin, for many only a stage in the final trip to Auschwitz-Birkenau. The ghetto was finally dissolved May 12, 1942. Those who resisted, were shot on the spot. Before the outbreak of WWII, about 2,300 Jews lived in Gabin. Only 212 survived the war. Of those, approximately 180 persons had fled to the Soviet Union. The remaining thirty-two survived the war hiding in the "Aryan" side. After the war, most left Poland for the U.S. and Israel. photos. Also see Gombin The Jewish Historical & Genealogical Society; Gmina żydowska w Gąbinie The Jewish Community in Gąbinie; Gombin: The Life and Destruction of a Jewish Town in Poland Gombin: The Life and Destruction of a Jewish Town in Poland; and Gąbin - sztetl moich rodziców. Gąbin - my parents shtetl. Strona Ady Holtzman Page Ada Holtzman [May 2009]
Almost completely destroyed by the Nazis, Grziwacz Jacob wrote in his memoirsat www.zchor.org: "One day the Nazis gathered several hundred Jews and ordered them remove the gravestones to the nearby Catholic cemetery. Gravestones were used to reinforce the bridge and construct curbstones. Prior to the entry of Soviet troops into the city, the Nazis once again defiled the cemetery with tanks. Only a few dozen matzevot remain. Sam Rafel in 1937 made a short film about the city and its inhabitants. Courtesy of Ada Holtzman. More photos from the film. The site was a children's ball field and a garbage dump. The majority of graves were unknown until 1993 when torrential rains near the bridge revealed gravestones used in its construction. On July 23, 1993 for "Voice of the Morning" B. Buraczyński wrote: "During the maintenance of the bridge was an unusual discovery. Among river cross plates tombstones were found, originating from the local Jewish cemetery (... ). It turned out that the gravestones were used for the curbs placed along ul. Browarnej. In addition, more than 130 were found on ul. Pożarnej, the profanation of the Jewish cemetery by German occupiers, ... None of [the workers] returned after the war from the Ukraine. They were murdered. Matzevot fragments made of sandstone are also in the nearby forests and in private premises." Local peasants made a cottage industry of the sandstone. Some tombstones were used for other purposes. At the end of the 1990s, descendants of Gabin Jews, the Nissenbaum Family Foundation, Memorial Foundation Century, city authorities, and the Society of Lovers of the Earth Gąbińskiej, cleaned the cemetery area and recovered fragments of gravestones into a lapidarium. The unveiling of a monument took place on August 16, 1999. During the ceremony Maciejko Mary-Kaminska was honored for assisting Jews during the Holocaust. Ada Holtzman, a Gąbiń descendant, created the website especially for the ceremony. [May 2009]
Burial list and photos of gravestones [August 2014]
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