Gombin Yizkor Book

Project Name: Gombin, the life and destruction of a Jewish town in Poland - Memorial Book

Project Coordinators: Leon Zamosc and Ada Holtzman z”l

JewishGen Yizkor Book Project Manager: Lance Ackerfeld


Project Description

This project will complete the translation of the Yiddish sections of the memorial book Gombin: the life and destruction of a Jewish town in Poland, edited by Jack Zicklin et al. and published by the Gombiner Landsmanshaft of America, New York, 1969. Some of the book's Yiddish chapters have already been translated and appear online at, however, considerable portions of the Yiddish sections of the book still remain to be translated. The original book is available online at the NY Public Library:

Since many Shoah victims from Gombin were not memorialized in the original book, the English translation will include a postscript with an updated Gombin Holocaust Necrology, giving Gombiner families the opportunity to enshrine the memory of their lost relatives. Gombiner descendants interested in this option should contact the project coordinator directly: Leon Zamosc .

Key Audiences

The primary audience for the material includes Jewish genealogists seeking to trace their roots in Gombin, Jewish and Polish amateur researchers interested in the Jewish heritage of the town and its surrounding region, and specialized scholars investigating the history, life and destruction of the Jewish communities of Central Poland.

Project Importance

On the eve of the Second World War, Gombin was a town of about 6.000 inhabitants, 43% of whom were Jewish. The Gombin Yizkor book, written by émigrés and Shoah survivors, is a unique source of information on the town's vanished Jewish community. It contains narratives of the history of the town, details of daily life, religious and political figures and movements, religious and secular education, and testimonies on the oppression and destruction of the town's Jewish community during the German occupation. The names mentioned in the book and its necrology chapters are of exceptional genealogical and historical value because many historical personalities and individual Shoah victims are not documented elsewhere. The complete translation of the Gombin memorial book into English will make available all this information to interested researchers and scholars all over the world.

Project Details

Of the 41 chapters in the Yiddish sections, 14 can be now read in English (7 were included in the English sections of the original book, and another 7 were translated as part of a previous JewishGen project). This new JewishGen project will complete the work, rendering into English the 27 Yiddish chapters that remain untranslated. The coordinator of the previous project, Ada Holtzman z”l, was a distinguished researcher of the history and genealogy of the Gombin and Polish Jews. Leon Zamosc, coordinator of the new project, was a founder of the Gombin Society in the 1990s and led the initiatives to restore the Gombin Jewish cemetery and erect a Gombin memorial monument at Chelmno extermination camp.

The work will be completed following the standard guidelines of the JewishGen Yizkor Book Project. The project coordinator will select the order in which the chapters will be rendered, working closely with professional translators hired by JewishGen. In the final stage, he will proofread, edit, and prepare the definitive text for approval by the JewishGen Yizkor Book project and electronic publication on its website.

Estimated Cost


Donations are welcome at any level. Donors at the level of $300 and above will receive a complimentary hardback copy of the translated Gombin memorial book. While the material will be available on the JewishGen website, we are sure that donors will treasure a professionally printed version they can hold in their hands and show to relatives and other Gombiner descendants.


Project start date is mid December 2019 and completion will be within 6 months.


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Updated 13 Dec 2019 by LA