CIOLT: Maramures County Print


International Jewish Cemetery Project - Romania C US Commission Reference Number RO/MM/03

Alternate Hungarian name: Csolt. Located in Maramures County at 4729 2331, 21 km SSW of Baia Mare. This site is a bit of a challenge to locate as it is situated on the outskirts of a rural village. Upon entering the village of Ciolt, the cemetery is nestled into a small grove of evergreen trees across the valley to the right hand side of the village (as you come up the road). A dirt track leads to the right, off the main village road about where the pavement stops. The track ends at the river, which is easily fordable most of the year. A small stream joins the larger river; and a small fishpond is directly after the ford. The cemetery is located directly behind and to the left of the pond, which locals call the "lac", in a small grove of evergreen trees where the cemetery is nestled. Local residents refer to the main river valleys as "valea cioltului" and the smaller one with the stream as "valea scaritei".

The cemetery in Ciolt (Csolt) did not figure on any list but was located by means of asking local residents. Getting to the cemetery is not very easy, as it is located quite some distance from the village. At the time of our visit, there remained but a single stone and one concrete foundation. Our young guide recalls that within the past ten years at least two other stones have disappeared. To our knowledge, outside of a few local residents, this site has never been visited.
This was the only cemetery in the Lapus region that was located in a pine grove. The location is very peaceful and beautiful as the ground is covered with rich copper-colored pine needles and small streams gurgle away in the distance. Unfortunately, not much of this site remains. Possibly, the remaining stone could disappear at any time given the fact that the cemetery is isolated, unprotected, and virtually forgotten.

Quite some distance towards the south, though visible from the village, there is a hill that residents refer to as "jidodina" (Zsido, and Jido are Hungarian and Romanian words for 'Jew', but we have no accurate translation of the whole word 'jidodina'). The Jewish Community in Baia Mare was unaware of this cemetery at the time of the survey. It is not known if the Jewish Community in Bucuresti is aware of this site. The site is about 25 sq. meters with one limestone flat and smoothed gravestone inscribed in Hebrew. The owner of the site is unknown and is visited rarely by local residents. Adjacent properties to the forest are agricultural. No care. Weather erosion is the only threat.

John DeMetrick and Christina Crowder, (formerly of Cluj, they have no further information) , completed this survey on 22 April 2000 using a list of cemeteries known by the Jewish Community in Baia Mare. They visited the site on 13 April 2000 and interviewed elderly villagers.