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Coat of arms of Gmina WasilkówAlternate names: Wasilków [Pol], Vashilkova, װאשילקאװ [Yid], Vasil'kuv, Василькув [Rus], Vashilkuv. 53°12' N, 23°13' E, 5 miles NNE of Białystok. 1900 Jewish population: 1,470. Yizkor: Pinkes Vashilkover yisker-bukh; a spetsyele oysgabe vegn lebn mord un toyt fun a yidishn yishev (Melbourne, 1990) and Bóżnice Białostocczyzny (Białystok, 1992). Gmina Wasilków is an urban-rural administrative district in Białystok powiat, Podlaskie Voivodeship in NE Poland with its seat in the town of Wasilków. The gmina 2006 total population was 12,790 with 8,967 in the town of Wasilków. Normal 0 Wasilków received city rights in 1566. The first Jews arrived from a nearby Choroszczy in 1650. By 1714, Wasilkow had an independent kahal. At the end of the 19th century of 3,800 people, 1,470 were Jewish. Before WWII, about 1,000 Jews remained in Wasilkow. Normal 0 Wasilkow had three Jewish cemeteries. The one at the junction of ul. Polna and ul. Kościelnej was completely destroyed during WWII. A city sports stadium was built sports on the site. [June 2009]

Normal 0 CEMETERY: The only preserved Jewish cemetery of the three that existed is on Wasilkow Street and was established at the end of the 19th century. 25 matzevot are visible, but probably many more are buried. The old metal gate with Mogen David remained in the site neglected until June 2007 when restoration was complete. The lapidarium of gravestone fragments found in the village was dedicated. Video. ShtetLink 2007 description, directions, and photos: "53°12'N 23°13'E. Size: c.1 acre. Number of matzevoth: < 20 (16 counted; supports). Bagnowka.com: Wasilkow Gallery (1988, 1997).The cemetery seems to be situated within a (park) construction area, with a cobblestone path dividing the cemetery in two (Image 2) and leading to a back walkway and wall (noise buffer from highway?) (Image 3). 16 matzevoth were counted with inscriptions in varying degrees of legibility (Image 4-5). Some gravesites are sunken. A few bases and supports remain (Image 6). Some fragments were noted along with litter (Image 7). The greatest threats appear to be the ongoing construction and signs that the area is used for recreation (e.g. tree house, play house) (Images 8-9)." [April 2009]

Two years ago I visited Poland and the village of my mothers birth, Washilkov. I went to the cemetery and it was awful to see how it looks. I am very interested to do something about it. This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it (charny, katz) hadad. Yehood, Israel. [June 2009]

also used cemetery at Bialystok I, II

WASILKOW I:     US Commission No. POCE000128

Alternate Yiddish name: Wasilkowa. The town is located in region Bialostockie at 53º12 23º13, 5 km from Bialegostoku. The cemetery does not exist but was in center E part of the town, near the sports stadium. Town population was 7,272 in 1993 with no Jews.

  • Local: Urzad Miasti I Giminy, ul. Bialostocka 5, wojt., tel. 18-52-33.
  • Regional: Wojewodzki Konserwator Zabytkow, Bialystok, ul. Dojlidy Fabryczne 23, tel. 41- 23-32.
  • Interested: Leon Mendelewicz, 60 Celia Street, Burwood Victoria, 3125, Australia and Rudolf Anthony, 8 Oaks, Woodside Avenue, London, England.

The earliest known Jewish community dates from the 17th century. 1921 Jewish population was 950. Rabin Izrael Halper and Rabin Rafael Gordon lived here. The Jewish cemetery was established in the 18th (?) century with last known Orthodox or Conservative Jewish burial 1910. Surrounding villages from up to 10 km. away also used this unlandmarked cemetery. [no names given] The pre-WWII cemetery size was 0.6 ha; today, 0.0. No stones. The municipality owns the property, now part of a sports stadium. It was completely destroyed during World War II.

Tomasz Wisniewski, Bialystok, ul. Berna 95/99, tel. 212-46 completed survey on 26 September 1991. He visited the site in 1989.

WASILKOW II:     US Commission No. POCE00129

Location of cemetery: NE part of the town, on ul. Slowackiego. The Jewish cemetery was established in the 19th century with last known Orthodox, Conservative, or Progressive/Reform Jewish burial 1940. Surrounding communities within 10 km. away also used this unlandmarked cemetery. The suburban flat land, separate but near other cemeteries, has no sign or marker. Reached by turning directly off a public road, access is open to all with no wall, fence, or gate. The pre-WWII size was 0.7; and post-WWII cemetery size is 0.2 ha. 1-20 stones, some in original location with less than 25% broken or toppled, date from 1886. The 19th and 20th century granite, limestone, slate or beton [concrete] rough stones/boulders or flat- shaped stones are inscribed with Hebrew. Some have traces of painting on their surfaces. There are no known mass graves. The municipality owns the property used for storage and waste dumping. Adjacent property is agricultural and residential. New roads/highways, housing development, and agriculture reduced the cemetery size. Rarely, organized local residents stop. It was vandalized during World War II and frequently with no care or maintenance. Within the limits of the cemetery are no cemetery structures. Security and incompatible nearby incompatible development are serious threats. Adjacent lots are too close to the cemetery. The area is used for waste dumping. Vegetation is a constant problem, disturbing graves. Vandalism is a moderate threat.

Tomasz Wisniewski, Bialystok, ul. Berna 95 m 99, tel. 212-46 completed survey and site visit on 25 September 1991. Documentary photographs exists from Tomasz Wisniewski and Andrej Grajter in opracowali "Dokumnetacie ewidencyjna cmentara zydowskiego w Wasilkowie" BBID" Bialystok 1986 He visited the site in 1989 and 1991.

NOTE: In his 1998 book Jewish Bialystok , Wisniewski contradicts the above report by stating on p. 107 that the Jewish presence dates from 1653 and that the Jewish community was formed by 1714. The 1897 Jewish population was 1,470 out of 3,800. The pre-WWII Jewish population was about 1,000. Also, he states that only one of three Jewish cemeteries (Wasilkow II) remains with 13 gravestones and that it has a marker in the shape of a Mogen David. The location of the third cemetery is not noted.

Last Updated on Thursday, 23 July 2009 18:57
 
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