GROJEC: Mazovia Print

Coat of arms of Grójec

Alternate names: Grójec [Pol], Gritze [Yid], Gruyets [Rus], Gritsa, Gritza, Grutse, Russian: Груец. גריצע - Yiddish. 51°52' N, 20°52' E, 27 miles SSW of Warszawa, 33 miles NNW of Radom. 1900 Jewish population: 3,723. Yizkors: Megilat Gritse (Tel Aviv, 1955) and Keynmol nisht fargesn (, 1972). Grójec is a town in the Masovian Voivodeship and is the capital of Grójec Gmina with about 14,875 inhabitants in 2004. It is the biggest apple producing center in Europe.  [May 2009]

Alternate names: Gritz [Yid]. The privilege granted to the town in 1744 prohibited Jewish settlement; howeer, Jews began to settle there in the 18th century and documented in 1754. Jewish population: 1,719 in 1856 (68.7%), 3,737 in 1897 (61.9%), and 4,922 in 1921 (56.3%). On the eve of WWII approximately 5,200 Jews lived in Grojec. At the end of the 18th century, the city was an independent municipality. The first wooden synagogue burned down in 1812 and only was rebuilt in 1850 with polychrome interior paint by known Jewish artist, David Friedlander. A fragment of the synagogue is described in an book entitled The Gates of Heaven. Wooden Synagogues by Maria and Kazimierz Piechotków: "The interior of the hall was the polychrome emphasizing the vault structure, painted with acanthus leaves, garlands, and trompe l'oeuil "windows". The aron ha-kodesh facade had a cartouche supported by lions and winged animals. The arc of the dome read: "How terrible the place, the gateway to heaven" in light rays from a sun (Gloria) adored by winged gryfons. Above the arch was a bird with outstretched wings. The lower area had a circle of stars from the zodiac and a upper semi-circular window." On the wall west, over the cheder gallery, was a vixen divided into three fields. On the door was a cartouche supported by a pair of lions, the left illustrating Psalm 137: Above the rivers of Babylon" and on the right a view of buildings, perhaps suggesting the Temple in Jerusalem." 1856 Jewish census: 1719 Jews (68.7%). 1921 Census: 4,922 Jews (58.8%) with a large number of Chassidim. Rabbi Szlaga Fajwel Danziger (died 1849), the son of Jehiel, of the powerful dynasty Aleksandrowie in Lodz, lived here. On September 12, 1939, all men ages 15 to 55 years were forced to leave town on foot for Rawy Mazowiecki about 37 mi. (60 km.) away during which many died. During the spring of 1940 about 500 Jews from Lodz and its surroundings were forced to settle in Grojec. In July 1940, with a ghetto established, the plight of the Jewish inhabitants deteriorated; they suffered from hunger, epidemics, and lack of fuel during the winter of 1940-41. About 1,000 fled to Bialobrzegi and were murdered there or deported to Treblinka in the fall of 1942. Liquidation of the ghetto took place on February 23 - 24, 1941 its inhabitants were deported to Warsaw and later to death camps. In summer 1943, 83 were deported to the slave labor camp near Smolensk where most were murdered. The last 250 Jews in Grojec were murdered in a forest near Gora Kalwaria. [May 2009]

CEMETERY: The Jewish cemetery in the vicinity of ul. Mogielnickiej next to the Catholic cemetery was founded in 1794 together with the Jewish community. The area was expanded in 1847 with an adjacent parcel. As a result of the devastation in WWII and after liberation, today only a few concrete foundations of tombstones remain. In 1992, Beata Jaworska in "Newspaper Grojecki" discussed the post-war fate of the cemetery: "The forgotten Jews, ... for years, the cemetery was regarded merely as a good place for sledging and asylum for hooligans. Some stolen gravestones apparently strengthen foundations or apparently were laid as pavement." The northern part of the cemetery was a gravel pit, also used by the military and militia as a shooting range. In 1989, the cemetery was officially landmarked, but unfortunately, the area of the cemetery is a questionable residential area with garbage left there. The monument to victims of the Holocaust serves as a place for throwing bottles. Traces of vandalism and anti-Semitic graffiti abound. satellite view and photos. [May 2009]

MASS GRAVE: From the gate decorated with Mogen David is narrow path leading to a paved mass grave of Jews from Grojec, murdered on 14 July 1943 in Gora Kalwaria and moved here iIn December 1948. A little further on is a stylized matzevot monument dedicated to the memory of the victims of the Holocaust, created several years ago by the former head of the Jewish community. The second is inscribed in Hebrew: "Memory of the saints. 5699-5705. Jakow son of my Father Elijah, Chaja mother of my daughter Sara Mordechaj Lega. My Sister Bina. Henoch Heniek my brothers and Joseph Chaim Kielmanzon. Lega Holckener Families. kahał the Holy Grójcu, men, women and infants. the rest of their son Moshe Meir Kielmanzona and his family in Israel. Words of farewell with tears in their eyes: "The main benefit of this knowledge and keep the Sabbath, the rest will come itself." In the vicinity of the monument, the grass covers destroyed tombs. Sign in English. [May 2009]

US Commission No. POCE 000069

Griza in Yiddish, Grojec, is in Radom at 51º53 20º52, 46 km from Warszawa. The cemetery is located on Mogielnicka Str. Present population is 5,000-25,000, with no Jews.

  • Town: Burmistrz Miasta, ul. Zw. Walki Mlodych, 59, tel. 2301 05-600 Grojec.
  • Regional: Wojewodski Konserwator Zabytkow, 26-600 Radom, ul. Moniuszki 5a, tel. 2-13-16.

The earliest known Jewish community was 1794. 1921 Jewish population was 4922 (58.8%). The unlandmarked Orthodox and Conservative Jewish cemetery was established in the 18th century. The urban hillside, separate but near other cemeteries, has a sign or plaque in a local language (Polish) and Yiddish mentioning the Holocaust. Access, directly off a public road, is open to all with no wall, fence, or gate. The approximate size of the cemetery is approximately 1.8 ha. 20 to 100 stones 19th and 20th century granite, limestone, and sandstone flat shaped stones remain in original location OR 100-500 are in original locations. [sic] The cemetery has no special sections. The cemetery contains special memorial monuments to Holocaust victims and marked mass graves but no structures. The municipality owns the property now for agriculture (animal grazing) and recreation (playground). Properties adjacent are recreational, commercial, industrial, agricultural, and residential. Compared to 1939, the cemetery size is the same [sic: form said earlier size was unknown]. Private Jewish visitors occasionally visit. The cemetery was vandalized during World War II. Individuals or groups of non-Jewish origin and by local/municipal authorities cleared vegetation in the last ten years. Now, occasionally, authorities clear or clean. Pollution and vegetation are slight threats. Weather erosion and incompatible nearby development (planned, proposed, and existing) are moderate threats.

Adam Penkulla, ul. Gagarina 9, m. 24, 26-600 Radom, tel. 48 - 366 35 34 completed this survey  on August 4, 1991 after a visit on July 13, 1991, using his personal documentation.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 27 May 2009 17:48