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Translation of Uchanie chapter from
Pinkas Hakehillot Polin
Published by Yad Vashem
Published in Jerusalem
Morris Gradel z"l
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This is a translation from:
Jewish Communities, Poland,
Volume VII, page 44, published by Yad Vashem, Jerusalem
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(District: Hrubieszow; Province: Lublin)
Uchanie (U) is first mentioned in 1485 as a settlement owned by a noble family. In that same year King Kazimir Jagiello granted it urban status and the right to hold a weekly market and annual fairs - privileges which were renewed in 1504 by King Alexander Jagiello. The town was also granted exemption from taxes for 16 years. In the 16th century U grew and was a commercial and crafts centre for its agricultural surroundings. In 1795, after the Third Partition of Poland, U came under Austrian rule; in 1807 it was incorporated into the Grand Duchy of Warsaw; and in 1815 and until the First World War it formed part of the Kingdom of Congress Poland. In 1915 the townlet was occupied by the Austrians until they retreated in 1918.
Jewish inhabitants of U who traded in grain are first mentioned in 1640, but it would seem that Jews had settled there before. The data available on the community and its way of life are sparse. We know only that the Jews formed a majority of the population, and that in the 19th and 20th centuries there was an organised community. On the outbreak of the First World War many of the Jews were expelled from U because of its proximity to the battlefront. Some moved to other places in Poland or to Russia, and others went overseas.
In the inter-war period the life of the community was stable, and there was a rabbi, R. Jehuda Zyndel Lipszyc.
At the end of September 1939 U was occupied by the Germans. The Jews there, as in other parts of Poland, were seized for slave labour, their property systematically confiscated, and they were subject to harsh restrictions - they had to wear a special sign on their clothing, they were forbidden to walk on the pavement, or to have any contact with non-Jews. During this period Jewish refugees from towns and villages in the vicinity arrived in U, including - in the spring of 1942 - 680 from Horodlo. In May of that year the Jews in U numbered 2,025 souls.
On June 10th, 1942, the Germans liquidated the community of U. The Jews were taken to the railway station at Miaczyn and sent in goods wagons to their deaths in Sobibor.
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