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[Unnumbered back of title page – א]

 

[Unnumbered back of title page – ב]

 

 

Printed in the Year 5720 – 1959

Tel-Aviv, State of Israel

“Arazi” Printers, Tel-Aviv Yafo, Tel. 83331

 

[Credits page – ג]

 

 

Editor: Ephraim Talmi (Wluka)

Collection of Information: I.M. Sidroni (Sendrowicz)

Proofreader and Print Supervision: Yitzhak Bergson

Material Written in Yiddish, Edited for Printing:

W. Yasni

Cover Artist: Avraham Meiron (Marantz)

 

[Page – ד]

*
* *

We have succeeded in concluding this momentous undertaking – preparing a memorial book for the Community of Sierpc.

We knew that there were differences of opinion as to the most proper way to honor the Community of Sierpc. There were some that objected to the very idea of publishing a book. Some argued for other forms of memorial, such as the planting of trees, etc. But the few comrades that were in Israel, who vigorously supported a memorial book, felt there was no better way to honor our ancient community than a literary, historic, and documentary monument for the generations to come. When, in the future, a historian will write the chronicles of the Jewish communities of Europe, he will not do it by consulting forests or cenotaphs and so forth; he will use the material collected in the memorial books as his important references.

This has not been an ordinary task. By its very nature, the preparation of this type of book presents many difficulties. We had to make a book out of ashes… But thanks to the stubbornness of a few, and their perseverance, our remembrance has reached its climax after six years. Important material had to be collected bit by bit, with the utmost patience, with unceasing love and great respect for the community and its Jews, for all our loved ones who were there and are no longer.

We know that we have not managed to collect all of the bricks necessary to erect a monument that would be fully worthy of a great and important community like Sierpc. Many who could have made an important contribution are no longer among the living, and some did not reply to our requests.

A compilation such as this one cannot be approached as just another book, as scientific or historical literature. The ways of life described in these pages will not be weighed by the balances of literature or the scales of scholarship. The historian Nachman Blumenthal states that the importance of a memorial book, even for scholarship, is that its authors are not academics. Sometimes there is certain charm in the primitive form of the book, with a language and style that are not faultless, not without grammatical error, but is evidence of the innocence and directness of the descriptions. And most important, these books contain an abundance of material for getting to know the spirit of the people, something that may be missing in more scholarly tomes.

We, the remaining townspeople of Sierpc, who by the grace of the Creator have been left the few out of many, have been privileged to be part of the builders of the fatherland in the Land of Israel. We felt that we have to fulfill a sacred obligation, to leave a testament to our community. We could not rest or stop until we finished our labors, this holy work of sorrow and pain.

We would like to thank all those who helped in preparing this remembrance book, who supported us in searching for material, with advice and guidance. Especially the members of the organization committee in Israel: Avraham Yerushalmi (Fried), chairman; Z. Arpa, secretary; Yosef Appelbaum, treasurer; Ephraim Panfil, Rivkah Tzipris, I.M. Sidroni, and B-Z Kempner. The members of the book committee in America were: Rivkah Arpa, Golda Goldman, Rasha and Leib Mintz, Chayim Pindek, and Sarah and Mordecai Rzeszotka.

Let us also acknowledge our comrades: Y.A. Liebson, M. Tzina, and A. Ben-David (Mlawa) for their help in getting the book published.

To all, thank you and bless you.
 
Tel-Aviv, 5720 (1959) The Editors

 

[Page – ה]

In Memorium (Yizkor)

Let us, the people of Israel, remember the holy communities of the lands of the Diaspora, that were uprooted, destroyed, and obliterated; their members who were killed, the victims of the kingdom of evil, that were brutalized by physical and spiritual torture in the death camps, who were deported to the cruelest land and left no trace. The multitudes that were murdered in the marketplaces and streets; that were brought to slaughter in freight cars; that were buried alive and incinerated in the holy tabernacle on Torah parchment. Those that were crushed, drowned, and strangled, whose honor was desecrated and whose blood was spilled by polluted hands martyrs of God.

Let us, the people of Israel, remember our innocent children, the purest of the pure, who were snatched from the bosoms of their parents by the most bestial of mankind and led to slaughter like sheep. That were decapitated and massacred by all means, and whose bodies were left exposed in the streets; toddlers and nurslings who were smashed against walls of stone. That were thrown from high ramparts and dropped alive into the depths of rivers; whose lives were cut off in the bud by the cruelest of hands the martyrs of God. Yizkor - In Memorium.

 

[Page – ו]

There Once Was…

There once was the Community of Sierpc. It was a city among cities, a community among communities, and is no more. Just as hundreds of Jewish communities in Poland that are no more. Gone like the six million of our brothers and sisters who perished in the awful Holocaust.

There once was…

The open wound keeps bleeding. The fountainhead of tears boils. And the frozen eye stares into the pits of time and sees everything up to the deepest depths, until the soul trembles… It clearly sees the town that squats on an essential crossroad. A town that was half Jewish, and where there are no more Jews… It sees the houses that are no longer there, and the Jews who lived there and are not there… It sees the lives that were lived in those houses, the private and the public lives, the life of a holy community that is not there… The eye sees everything, and the hand chronicles it with twisted fingers so that it will become history. So that we can remember and not forget! So we can merge our boiling tears for the loss of our community with the great reservoir of tears of the nation, in that enormous house of pain, that is like no other for any nation or tongue.

There once was…

It ascended to heaven in blood and fire… But it was in our hearts and will be in our memories for the generations. We have not forgotten and we will not forget and it is impossible to forget! In the silence! And in the eternal silence!

Yit'gadal v'yit'kadash” – may they be exalted and sanctified.

 

[Page – י]

 

No caption - [Rubber Stamps of Sierpc Jewish Organizations]

 

[Facing page – י]

 

sie003.jpg
Map of Pre-WWII Poland

 

sie004.jpg
View of Sierpc
[Facing page – י”א]

 

sie005.jpg
The Market

 

sie006.jpg
The Magistrat (Town Hall) and Shmiga's House

 

[Page – י”א]

In Memory of my Father Eliezer Sendrowicz (5630-5668) [1869-1907]
In Memory of my Mother Yocheved Sendrowicz (5631-5698) [1870-1937]
In Memory of my Sister Gitel Billa Karpa (5650-5683) [1889-1922]
 
Of Sacred Memory…
 
For Sierpc, my town Heavens wail and the earth is furious
My birthplace, my own Of the Holocaust inglorious
I bring my dirge, my grief By the polluted ones, the vicious
Of the Jews, their annihilation Our nation was decimated by their malice
Their destruction, obliteration Sierpc was also stricken
My mourning brings no relief And brought to total extinction
 
To their sacred memory
I dedicate my chronicles
I will pray Kadish
And invoke my supplications
I.M. Sidroni

 

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