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Jewish-Polish Relationships in Kutno 40 Years Ago
(Jewish Action in the Kutno City Council)

by David SZTOKFISZ, Ramat Gan

We have before us some documents and newspapers, dating from 1925: transcripts of interpellations to the Kutno city council by the Jewish councilors![1] Two posters with an anti-Semitic content; Issues 1 to 12 of the weekly “Głos Kutnowski[2] – “Independent Edition for All”, from 23 August to 8 November 1925; 3 issues (36, 40 and 46) of the “Tygodnik Kutnowski[3] – “Socio-economic and literary body dedicated mainly to local affairs and the immediate area”, dated from 6/9/25 to 15/11/25, with the heading overhead from the newspaper “We only accept ads from Christian companies” and two issues of the Warsaw Daily Polish newspaper “Gazeta Poranna – Dwa Grosze”, from 3/9/1925 and 19/9/1925.

The above-mentioned materials have been carefully preserved over the course of 40 years by Mr. Mendelewicz – and only thanks to this is it possible for us to reconstruct and create a certain picture of the prevailing relations between the Polish and Jewish population – in general seven years after Poland became an independent country and 14 years before the outbreak of World War II.

Immersing myself in all the papers, I came up with the story of Dr. Nahum Nir, Vice-Speaker of the Knesset and veteran of Poalei-Tzion, about a discussion he had before the war in Eretz-Israel with a Zionist leader. The latter told him that “a calf born in a kibbutz has a greater meaning for the Jewish people than a speech given

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by a Zionist in the Kutno City Council…” N. Nir replied that both are important for Jews: both the kibbutz calf and the speech of a Jewish representative in the Kutno City Council…

Some newspapers do tell, albeit with antisemitic poison and antisemitic ridicule, about the courageous and stubborn action of the Kutno Jewish public representatives in the city council – the Zionists, Orthodox, Populists and Bundists, who knew how to show a united front, in particular in the face of sharp anti-Jewish actions on the part of the city's carers, coming out against the antisemitic plague and anti-Jewish propaganda, which in 1925 took such sharp forms in the city and even had a wide resonance outside of it.

The author of these lines is not from Kutno, nor does he dispose of too much material in order to better unravel the fabric of Jewish-Polish relations between the two world wars. But the minor material of some newspapers, although it refers to only 2-3 months of the year 1925, is like the drop of water that reflects off the sea – and can help us a great deal to understand the further shape of these relations, until the tragic destruction of Kutno Jewry in ghetto Konstancja and in the graves and crematoria of Chelmno.

* * *

Let us begin the story of an interpellation by the six Jewish councilors in Kutner city council about the past evils of the local school authorities regarding the Jewish population.

Urgent motion

As the city council has decided several times, the school building now under construction should first house School No. 3, which is located in an unfitting building on Podrzechna Street – the Jewish population is concerned about the aspirations and will of the school authorities, i.e., the inspectorate and in part by the school board of trustees, and sees in it a violation of its elementary needs. The undersigned councilors cannot allow the desire of the representatives of the Jewish population to be violated in such an unheard-of way.

For the above reasons, the city council must decide whether to call upon the municipality and city council, within the framework of the school self-government, to make every effort to move School No. 3 from Podrzechna into the new school building. In case of failure to comply with the above decision, the city council and the municipality would remove their representatives from the school board,

The members of the City Council:

Aharon Mendelewicz   Hersh Wajnsztajn
Yaakov Bromberg   Nathan Wajnsztajn
Abraham Ajzman   Herman Kirszbaum

4 July 1925

 

‘Jewish peril’ – That was the theme of an antisemitic lecture given on 30 August 1925.
Left – anti-Jewish announcement

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Demand to punish the inciters

Again, an interpellation, dated 14/7/25:

Urgent proposal to the municipality

On the 7th of this month, on the streets of the city and on poles, appeared printouts from Celkowski's Printing House, signed by the executive committee of the “Stowarzyszenie Samopomocy Społecznej[4] in Kutno, whose seat is in the premises of the editorial office of “Tygodnik Kutnowski”, regarding the impending agricultural strike.

In this appeal, the authors incite the Polish population against the Jews. The following excerpts from the above excerpt may serve as illustrations:

1- “A whole host of paid agitators from the Jewish-Bolshevik robbers scattered all over Poland, are calling for a strike. In their incitement to strike, these criminals exploit the suffering of the masses, wasting people's time with promises” and so on.

2- “Poles, as in 1920 when we repelled the Red invasion that flooded Poland, let us exert all our forces so that we will, at this no least critical moment, repel the knife of the Jewish-Bolshevik murderers, which is directed to our breast” and so on.

This appeal seeks to persuade the suffering masses of the Polish population of things that the authors themselves do not believe, namely, that the Jews are allegedly the organizers of the agrarian strike, along with the Bolsheviks. And the second quote really incites the Polish population and calls for active revolts against the Jewish population (… “as in 1920 when we repelled the Red invasion”…).

Considering the above, the city council should request the municipality to call the appropriate administrative authority and eventually the judicial authorities, on behalf of the city administration, with the aim of:

1- duly punish the authors and all culprits in the publishing, printing and distributing of the aforementioned appeal,

2- prevent in the future the distribution and issue of similar calls.

We enclose a copy of the appeal.

The members of the City Council:

Aharon Mendelewicz   Yaakov Bromberg Abraham Ajzman   Hersh Wajnsztajn Nathan Wajnsztajn   Zundel Comber

It is a pity that there were no documents regarding the course of the city council meeting, the decisions and reactions, such as the speeches of the special councilors. It is believed that the city council did not respond as demanded by the Jewish leaders, as Kutno continued to be an arena for antisemitic attacks.

* * *

We shall next quote the full text of a poster that appeared in town six weeks after the interpellation. The “father” of the poster is the well-known Jews-eater organization “Rozwój”[5].

Poles from all parties – unite!
Polish-Christians,

On Sunday 30 August 1925 at 1 pm, in the hall of the city theater on Theater Street of Kutno, there will be a lecture on the theme of “The Jewish Peril”, by the director of “Rozwój”, E. Zajączek.

Poles! Whoever of you wants an anti-Jewish Poland and thereby assumes that Poland should have bread for the Poles in the first place, should come to the lecture and become conscious. The Jewish peril is high, the roof is burning over our heads, let's save ourselves while there is still time. Anti-Jewish Poland is our sacred duty.

Swój do swego po swoje i tylko po swoje[6]

* * *

For Kutno antisemites, there was either the small activity of the “Rozwój” association, or one weekly newspaper in Polish language “Tygodnik Kutnowski”, which began to appear 8 years ago. On 23 August 1925, the first issue of a second weekly magazine, “Głos Kutnowski”, appeared as an “independent magazine for all”. Interestingly, in the address to the readers, published on the entire front page, the newspaper does not mention in a single word that it intends to fight against Jews and their institutions and organizations. There is a whole “program” in their address, but without any mention of Jews. On the second page, however, there is an article which immediately proves the antisemitic face of the newspaper…

Emigration of Jews from Poland to Palestine

The emigration of Jews has been growing lately, albeit slowly. This year, Jews emigrated from Poland to Palestine: in January – 943 persons, March – 1409, May – 1416, in July – 1451. In total, 8413 Jews emigrated to Palestine for the entire period, of which 50% as agricultural workers, 20%-30% on the basis of certificates from relatives in Palestine and the rest have received visas from the British authorities, after proving that they have a capital of at least 500 pounds sterling.

Good riddance and nice trip! And go faster.

We may love each other in the future – but from the other side of the seas.

* * *

And from a general Jewish story, with a poisonous antisemitic commentary, the newspaper goes on (on page

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3 of the same first issue) to a local, Kutner issue. The target of their attack – a Polish veterinarian Antoni Garlicki, who praised Jews and… criticized Poles.

To the pillory of shame!

Dr. Garlicki's meat tax: a Jew is worth 2,000 złotys, a Polish man is worth 2 złotys. 1000 to 1!

The editors of our newspaper have received a letter that, due to the unbelievable fact of defaming the nation's honor, we are bringing “in extenso”, as a whole:

”Dr. Garlicki, veterinarian at the Kutno municipal slaughterhouse, offended the feelings of Poles, because he told the Jewish butcher Fast of Kutno that the Poles were thieves, swindlers, that he personally, Garlicki, did not trust any Pole, butchers as well as others; that they were not worth lending money, and because he totally trusted every single Jew, he would rather lend a Jew 2,000 złotys rather than 2 złotys to a Pole. Therefore, we, as Poles, feel deeply affected that Mr. Garlicki, such a high-ranking official, dared to offend Polish feelings for the benefit of Jews, the eternal enemy, who lurks awaiting the destruction of his Polish kingdom.

Can the city council, the municipality, hold such a man as Dr. Garlicki, a man who breathes with hatred towards Poles and humiliate them about everything, while he exalts the Jewry and that even when the aforementioned Jew Fast drew his attention “that there are good Poles too,” Mr. Garlicki replied “that out of every 1,000 Poles one might find a decent one”?

With regards:

Ignacy Luczak
Władysław Wiewiórowski

And the editors added their comment to the letter:

We rubbed our eyes in astonishment and the natural indignation simply knocked our breath out. The letter with the signatures, which lies before us, speaks of the sad reality. What can Mr. Garlicki say about this question? Certainly nothing. Polish public opinion, smeared to the benefit of Jews by the “Pole” Mr. Garlicki, will surely hand down a just verdict on him.

Will the appeal of the undersigned to the city council, eventually to the municipality, find any resonance? Allow us to doubt, due to the well-known composition of the “national-minority” [of course “national-majority”, comment of the typesetter] of the representative body of our city. The “majority of the national minority” who plays the first violin in the city council, will not tolerate such a scandal as the dismissal of such a “loyal” Pole.

Our newspaper, however, defending the insulted national-Polish honor, gives the public opinion on the fact, condemns the sad public outburst of a Pole and places him at the public pillory of shame.

The editors of “Głos Kutnowski”.

* * *

In issue 2 of “Głos Kutnowski” (dated 30/8/1925) is printed the following letter from Dr. Garlicki:

The article “To the pillory of shame” is generally and in its details, incorrect. The opposite is true, that on more than one occasion in the city slaughterhouse, I have called the Polish butchers to a solidarity, which is generally characteristic of Jews. The truth is that I always do all my shopping in Polish shops, except for the articles that are not available there. It is true that I drew the attention of the butchers that Poles should observe the precepts to which most butchers have become accustomed. It is true that I often chastised Polish butchers when they came drunk to the slaughterhouse and gave an example that I had never seen a Jewish butcher drunk in a slaughterhouse. It is true that one of the authors of the letter, Mr. Władysław Wiewiórowski, while drunk caused a commotion in the slaughterhouse and was held criminally responsible.

It is true that my insistence for the butchers to respect the neglected sanitary precepts displeased a few of them and they have more than once gone to the municipality with complaints against me. One of them even publicly stated that even if it costed him a thousand złotys, I would not enter the slaughterhouse anymore. It is also true that I warned the stubborn butchers who did not comply with the rules that I would stop referring their cases to the courts but publish them in the local press.

Antoni Garlicki, Veterinary Doctor, Municipal Slaughterhouse Manager.

* * *

Now, we must return to Zajączek's announced lecture on the “Jewish peril in Kutno,” which has led to subsequent serious events. The “Głos Kutnowski” No. 2 of 30/8/25 tells:

The Jew Mendelewicz “forbids” to stick up posters of “Rozwój” – “At my command, tear down the posters” – Two rulers of Kutno!

Recently, a fact has happened in Kutno that sheds a characteristic light on the prevailing relations in the Kutner city council. On Sunday, the 30th of this month, there will be a lecture by Mr. Zajączek, organized by “Rozwój”, on the theme “The Jewish Peril”, that has received permission from the local Staroste. The editor of “Tygodnik Kutnowski”, Mr. Holc, who wanted to pay the municipality for the sticking of the posters, bumped into the municipality's “secretary,” the Jew Mendelewicz, who in an arrogant, categorical manner explained: on behalf

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of the city council, I do not authorize you to post any of the “Rozwój” posters.

On such sharp words from the angry little Jew, Mr. Holc went to the highest municipality instance, to Mayor Klepa.

Here again, however, a characteristic case occurred. The mayor also did not allow the sticking of the posters, covering up his weak position due to the large number of Jewish councilors in the city council, which in turn could lead to a no-confidence vote and his resignation.

H. Holc informed about this the craftsmen's representative, Gradowski Bolesław, who went to the mayor to clarify the matter. The mayor then gave permission, not even mentioning any fee for the municipality.

In the meantime, when the posters were stuck, Mendelewicz sent the municipality usher to tear down the posters by himself. The alerted police, however, were helpless, not having any instructions from Staroste, because the vice-staroste, Mr. Klamborowski, found no way out of the extremely difficult situation for him. Therefore, the ripping of the posters continued in front of the passive-looking police and ironically-smiling Jews.

After describing this event, let's think: where did that happen? In Poland! And in Poland, a Jew, a municipal official, well-paid with Polish money, dares to forbid “in the name of the municipality” from sticking up posters of a Polish association, legalized by the government for a number of years. From where did the Jew Mendelewicz dare to speak on behalf of the municipality? Is he so confident in the municipality? If this is already the case, what will happen next? Do we, with the patience of a little sheep, have to watch the municipality's usurping-ruler pushing himself with his elbows?

Since when does a Jew have the right, despite the permission of the mayor to stick up the posters, to send a municipality usher to rip the posters? Did the mayor know about his secretary's appeal to the usher, although it is difficult to grasp for any human being accustomed to normal conditions, even in the most primitive self-governments?

If not, will Mr. Mayor not be inclined, after Mr. Mendelewicz's scandalous outburst, to declare categorically and openly to him: Out, Jew, from a Polish municipality, that you must respect and in which, actually, you shouldn't even be. This is what the entire Polish population of Kutno expects.

* * *

It appears that the actions of Jewish lay judge Mendelewicz did not calm the antisemitic editors of “Głos Kutnowski”, who dedicated to the Jewish representative nearly the whole second page in their issue 3 of the weekly of 6 September 1925. First, a “poem” “On a Heroic Jewish Guy and His Sad End” (a tragic epic), in which the Jews are ridiculed in awkward rhymes and Mendelewicz is attacked in the most heinous way. In a pamphlet articles “Crumbles”, dedicated to the Kutno city official, Mendelewicz is referred to at the beginning as a “kosher Napoleon”. We read there:

For what do Jews need Palestine? Seeing that here, in Kutno, they have it better than Abraham behind the oven. Such a czupulnik[7], such a pale Niko[8], such a Jewish Napoleon, rules City Hall like the genuine general-governor.

He won't even give a kosher grin, but like the wild sultan of Morocco, or like another Arab sheikh, he turns his neck every which way, and everywhere sticks in his “snout” – where it belongs and where it doesn't.

He dominates quite alone in the municipal mud, “satisfied and pleased,” smacks his lips and enjoys himself, while none of this deters the mayor from starting up communal projects, in flying systems, gas, and others, travelling by air, eating, drinking, swimming from one wave to the next both wet and dry.

Against the kosher “Napoleon” the village elder is a nothing, the police are nothing, and the city council – two nothings in the laneway of his Talmudic wisdom.

So, for what really do the Jews need Palestine? Seeing that here they have everything that their hearts can ask, as is well-known to every doubting Thomas.

* * *

The Mendelewicz case – to the staroste

Under this heading, the following piece of news is printed in the same newspaper:

The scandalous public appearance of the angry Jewish municipality secretary Mendelewicz over the “Rozwój” posters will find his solution at the Staroste, where the matter has been referred by the police.

The police, as is well known, after receiving the news of Mendelewicz's “order” to remove the posters, did nothing about it and contented themselves with compiling a summons with Messrs. Holc, Gradowski, Mendelewicz and Mayor Klepa. All the material was handed over to the police, in order to hold Mendelewicz accountable. It is to be hoped that the outbreak of this arrogant Jewish “Philip of Hemp”[9] will receive a deserved punishment.

Returning to that historic day in the chronicles of Kutno, we will bring up one more characteristic detail. When the municipal usher received the “order” from “Governor” Mendelewicz to tear down the posters, he (probably not believing his own ears) went to

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the Mayor. And Mr. Klepa, after having accepted, added that in case the posters will not be torn down, then other posters have to be glued over them. Hasn't such “official” rigor carried away the Mr. Mayor? Truly moving.

* * *

The same newspaper also reports briefly (long report is said to be submitted in the second week) on the upcoming meeting of “Rozwój”. The adopted resolution is as follows:

The assembled members and sympathizers of “Rozwój “, numbering 1,000 men, after hearing the speeches of editor Holc and director E. Zajączek, expressed the energetic protest by the Polish people against this shameful deal of the administration with the Jews.

The meeting at the rally categorically demanded the removal of municipality's lay judge Mendelewicz, who insulted Polish sentiments with his arrogant behavior towards the delegate of the “Rozwój” division.

* * *

The “Głos Kutnowski” No. 4 keeps its word and on the front page it publishes a full report of the “Rozwój” rally, under the heading “The Jewish Peril.” This is not enough for the newspaper – it printed on page 2 a short, but basic news about the Town Hall officials, who buy newspapers in Jewish kiosks:

The assimilation of Town Hall

Swój do swego po swoje” – according to the poster of “Rozwój”. We do not support our own, and therefore buy at “our own”[10].

Let's take an example, such as buying newspapers every day at the kiosks of Pole Plazewski and Moshe Witkowski – and we'll see how our own municipality officials walk to the Jewish kiosk for a newspaper. Although the Christian kiosk is closer, it's always better to be loyal to “governor” Mendelewicz, since “he” is so powerful…

Meanwhile, the official feels a “moral” duty to support the Jews. It is possible that they will soon be ordered to wear colorful clothing and real yarmulkes, to the great satisfaction of our dear fellow citizens to whom the goyim assimilate so quickly.

* * *

In the following issues, again insinuations, feuilletons and poems with a pronounced antisemitic content. They are now attacking several Jewish hotels near the Kutno train station, presenting them as nests of prostitution and venereal diseases – demanding that the authorities close them, and with a similar motive that they do not take up a newly-arrived guest for Friday-night and Saturday… Here they describe a case in Łódź, where Jewish students were supposed to have taken down the sacred crucifix from the wall, trampled it with their feet – to prove that even in Kutno, Jewish impudence is great. And again, a reminder of the issue with the “Rozwój” posters, the interpellations of the Jewish councilors and so on.

* * *

Although the number 6 “Głos Kutnowski” was free from antisemitism, the number 7 “caught up” for the silence of previous week. There is a larger notice in the newspaper titled “Refined Jewish Extortion”, with subtitles like: “Jewish boycott of celebrations,” “Palestinian[11] heroes of the business week,” “A flick of the nose to loyalty and decent courtesy”. We bring the note without shortening, as it also refers to the reception for Shalom Asz, who visited Kutno in 1925:

… An as arrogant, cynical and deceitful Jewry as in Kutno, does not seem to exist in any part of Poland.

The provocative Jewish tribe in the city council, which gives the tune the municipality's rule in Kutno; which presumptuously throws itself into the meetings of the same council on the left and on the right, with farcical interpellations, resolutions, and urgent propositions; next, the arrogant, farcical Jewish municipality secretary Mendelewicz, with autocratic instincts, sends a touching letter from the Jewish councilors to the mayor, whom he recommends to take part in the official reception in honor of the Zionist writer Shalom Asz who came with a lecture in Kutno to awaken the Jewish-national spirit. This shows that the Jews in Kutno are increasingly pushing their elbows and feeling more secure than in first-class Palestine, where the English certainly know better than to curb their racial temperament. Recently, a fact has reappeared in Kutno that demonstrates to a sufficient degree what insolence the Jews are capable of towards Polish society.

The committee that conducts the “Week of the Police” in Kutno, has decided to invite all societies, organizations, unions and groups to take part in the celebrations. The secretary of the committee, Mayor Klepa, also did not forget the Jews, sending an invitation on behalf of the committee to the administration of the Jewish community. The Jews, however, as is well known, did not take part in the celebration, as well as in the street manifestation, or in the lottery, strictly boycotting the celebrations in which all strata and classes of our society took part. Therefore, they sent an arrogant, impudent, and refined letter to the committee, full of pretensions --- and the following content:

The management of the Jewish religious community in Kutno to the committee to celebrate the tenth anniversary of the Polish Security Service

”We have received your invitation. The day of the celebrations falls on the second day of our Rosh HaShana (New Year). Due to the above, we are unable to participate in the celebrations

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scheduled for this day. We are very surprised that you did not take this into account for the date of the celebration, which is not a fixed one[12]. We emphasize that the local Jewish population materially and morally supported the committees of the Civil Guard, which were organized in moments of upheaval. Our brothers were then in the ranks of the watch.”

The communiqué of the religious administration was signed by all the members, and it is surprising that after reading it, the dozors did not get an apoplexy.

On the one hand, it is a painful slap in the face to the entire local Polish population, on the other hand, it has once again rubbed the nose of the mayor, who, with his exaggerated loyalty and courtesy, exposed his colleagues from the committee to a compromising refusal from this unruly Jewry.

The Jews boast, convincing us at the same time, that “morally and materially, in moments of upheaval, they supported the committees of the Civil Guard.” We are well aware of their “moral support” during the Peace Congress in Paris, when Poland was besieged on all sides; We know their “support” during the Polish-Ukrainian fighting in Lviv, where they poured boiling water on Polish soldiers and fired from shelters. We can finally show their support for the Bolshevik invasion of Poland in 1920, when, by spying, by creating communist committees in the cities and towns, they established a Communist paradise on the only occupied areas, in which even significant rabbis took part, as evidenced by the unforgettable famous rabbi-spy Szapiro of Płock[13], shot by a court-martial for giving instructions to the Bolshevik army that had invaded the city.

This is – refined Jews – what your “moral and material support” for us in times of crisis looked like.

And today they call us, Polish-Catholics, to adapt to their Jewish, Beit-Midrash Shabbats, to observe and reckon with the dates of Sukkot, Yom Kippur, at a time when the Jews allow themselves the best deals and combinations during our solemn Christian celebrations, because they are totally not involved in our holidays and national celebrations. This spoilt Jewry feels so safe and certainly considers the Polish people so insensitive and perplexed that they allow themselves to be even more arrogant when they address us. Indeed, the arrogance and self-confidence is still premature and they will not live to see their hour of triumph, because Poland is not Bolshevik Russia. They do not take into account that the Polish spirit, which awaited hundreds of years of lethargy, is writing for the Jews the first letters of their “Writing on the Wall”[14].

* * *

The same letter was printed in the second weekly, “Tygodnik Kutnowski” (No. 40, dated 6/10/1925), but with the addition of the signatures of the members of the administration: Rabbi Trunk, Y. Majranc, A. Ajzman.

And the “Tygodnik” gives his comment:

The Kutner Jews are therefore surprised that the committee does not take into account the date of the Jewish holiday. In their opinion, the committee needs to adapt to the terms that they, or their rabbis, will determine. Comments are over!

This fact must be a guide for all Poles, that the Jewish element must be eliminated not only from the private but also from the social life of the Christians.

* * *

The editors of “Głos Kutnowski” did not satisfy themselves with a poisonous comment and an attack on the community. Th paper came out with no more than four pages and despite that, in the same issue, they gave place for a large serial novel with awkward rhymes about a Jewish dentist in Kutno, who was said to have committed fraud with the consent of local rabbi – and an article entitled “Trade on the Benches”, which states:

All the stone benches on Sienkiewicz Street are occupied by baskets of fruits, which are sold by Jewish vendors. People who rush to the train with luggage or get off the train, burdened and tired, do not have the opportunity to relax, because the benches designated for this purpose are occupied from early in the morning until in the evening by the merchants, who moreover hook the travelers. Wouldn't the police be satisfied to clean up the benches of the Jewish vendors who shove them with their bags, pollute the place and the surrounding area with waste of rotten fruit, and hand over the benches to the public, according to their intended use?

* * *

On page 3 again, a small note about the city clock and Shabbat-goyim from the tax office, which again gives an opportunity to attack Jews.

The Town Hall's clock

The “director” winding up the municipal clock is a Jew. Therefore, every year, during the Jewish Holidays, the clock stops. This year, the clock stopped last Sunday, because it fell on the Jewish New Year. To tell the truth, isn't it a scandal that in Kutno a Pole cannot be hired to wind up the clock, which would obviously solve the philosophical issue? Should the municipality, in whole or in part, stink of Jews?[15]

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Shabbat-goyim of the tax office

Certain officials of the tax office in Kutno subscribed regularly to the Jew for the “Gazeta Poranna” and “Courier Warszawski”, although not far away was the kiosk of the Christian Plazewski.

As we have learned, the aforementioned officials had to buy challot for Shabbat and now they have been invited for Sukkot, where they will be in the sukkah, together with payot-wearing curlylocks, eating fish with carrots and onions and drinking a drop of Passover brandy.

* * *

“Anti-Jewish Poland is our sacred duty” – writes an announcement on the first page of No. 8 “Głos Kutnowski”. And on the same page, a larger article titled “Self-defense”, dedicated to the Jewish question in Poland. And on the whole width of the page, at the very best place, a report on a lecture “Poland and the Jews”, which must take place in the “Polonia” hall. Lecturer – M. Lachowicz of Warsaw.

In the same issue (on p. 2) is reprinted in its entirety this article of E. Zajączek, which appeared in the Warsaw weekly “Rozwój”. This is the same one who had his lecture in Kutno and the mayor forbade hanging out his posters. The “Głos Kutnowski” clarifies that after a two-day visit to Kutno, E. Zajączek came to the conclusion that “the Jewish question in Kutno poses a serious and difficult problem.” His article is entitled: “Jewish-Municipality's Problem in Kutno”:

At the head of the city stands the president. Klepa, ostensibly a nationalist and, unfortunately, a member of the National Party's board member, whose influence in Kutno, thanks to the awkward darling, is diminishing day by day with damage to the national cause.

The following document illustrates to what extent Mr. Klepa is under the influence of Jews and gives them more at every step. We publish this document word-for-word, as a curiosity in our high 6-year activity, so that it should enter without change in the history of the difficult struggle on the way to defilement on one side, and on the other with its victims:

Municipality of the city of Kutno, Warsaw Voivodeship.
29/8/1925, No. 1/1-3843.
To Mr. Holc.

Please note that due to the fact that Mr. Zajączek's poster contains an appeal against one part of the population inhabiting our city, the Kutno municipality could not allow this report to be hung on the four city advertising columns, considering the municipality represents the interests of all strata of the local population,

Klepa, Mayor

Mr. Klepa, who sent a letter with the above content to the representative of “Rozwój”, probably wanted to be famous and go down in history. And he shot well. He will go down in history – because there has not been a case in our work where a policeman, a representative of a municipality, forbade the hanging of posters, the contents of which have been accepted by the government. We hope that Mr. Klepa will earn great honor in the Jewish community. With this fame, children of those who think Polish will not be jealous of him. Mr. Klepa's credo is no more than a very interesting contribution to recognizing the Jewish danger in the field of perpetuating the Polish spirit. The society will deeply remember the name of Mr. Klepa and other Klepas. We will designate as good citizens only those who, even as ordinary soldiers, will join the ranks of those fighting for Poland's Polishness and not those who are licking the partly strong and influential members of the anonymous great power. Mr. President Klepa! Only one Lord can be worshiped. These are the negative sides of Kutno, which I considered simply an official duty to condemn.

In addition, it is worth noting that the actions of factors, eventually from national groups, to anti-Jewish successes, are being paralyzed by individuals at the helm of municipal power. We mean, of course, Mr. Klepa, which is a paradoxical creation of a nationalist philosemite. Elsewhere, in larger centers, the question of whether the municipality is more or less perplexed would perhaps be lost. In Kutno however the municipality issue is dominant over all others. “The neighbors know where it's sitting,” says a proverb. The simple, the slightest, even the least “intelligent” know, therefore, that Mendelewicz was not born in a municipality, but that he was placed there. They are well aware that Mayor Klepa immediately gave Mendelewicz a salary such that a government official receives only after ten years of exemplary service, namely – 8th category, point H.

People now also know – and they don't let it out through clenched teeth – that Mendelewicz was imposed by the Jews to the mayor, who would want to get rid of him every minute, but he could not do so because it was legally and physically impossible. They know this because, as can be deduced from the minutes of city council meetings, there were instances when even the Socialists, along with the right, came out against Mendelewicz, so that he could be expelled from the municipality's office, but then the mayor alone stood boldly in his protection and defended him like a lion. Therefore, this Jew, feeling on the one hand the support of the Jews, whose

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confidant he is in the municipality, and on the other hand, having as a defender the mayor who wants to remain in office at all costs, this Jew has become so impertinent and arrogant that he allowed himself to act provocatively against the Polish people.

It is well known that the second “adjutant-lion” of the mayor is the municipality usher, the Jew Gurker[16]. Everyone who comes to the town hall, he gives right on the doorstep a picture of the Judaization of the municipality, especially when such a person hears the jargonish gabble of that usher-Jew in the interests of his brothers in faith. Every true local Pole who goes to the mayor with a matter must first present himself to such a little Jew with an official hat with eagle badge – first grinding his teeth in regret that even the post of usher in a Polish town hall is not available for a Pole.

No wonder then that all matters and orders, even the smallest, as for example buying newspapers, this usher, whether on the explicit command of his fellow-believer secretary Mendelewicz or on his own initiative and for the sake of Jewish solidarity – he will deal with Jews. Finally, it is also known that the guard in the city slaughterhouse is the Jew Hersh Lewkowicz, and the masonry work in the municipality is also carried out by the Jew Shmuel Wolsztajn. In a word – a Jew for a Jew and with a Jew drives on.

Such a mayor, who sits on two benches at the same time, the Polish and the Jewish, has caused the Polish thing to crumble in Kutno. In particular, the mayor enjoys the support of individuals who support the national camp in the city and the province, who do not see any harm to the national cause, tolerate such a member, make it impossible to consolidate the divided Polish forces to fight the common enemy, as the Kutno Jewry does with its solidarity.

It is difficult to know when everyone will see and understand that.

But one has to wish that this would happen as soon as possible, because, truly, there is peril in delay. We, wasting time and energy on nonsense, complaints, whining and excuses, only facilitate the mobilization of the Jewish forces for the future and not distant elections, which gives them the opportunity to confront us shabby and confused.

* * *

It is believed that even in Warsaw, the accusations made by Mayor Klepa were too harsh, exaggerated and his philosemitism, as the local and central Jew-haters accused him, was not so great:

The Warsaw “Gazeta Poranna–Dwa Grosze”, dated 19 September 1925, therefore published the following correspondence from Kutno:

What is true and what is not true

About the relations in Kutno

After reprinting in No. 242 of the “Gazeta Poranna” of the 3rd of this month, the correspondence of Kutno, which casted a shadow over the good name of the local mayor as citizen and Pole, we have gathered more information about the fact itself, as well as about the personality of Mayor Klepa.

It turned out that it was true that the Jewish lay judge Mendelewicz had behaved impertinently and arrogantly, as was underlined in the correspondence, but in regards to Mayor Klepa, he did not forbid to stick the posters in town: he only requested that the municipal usher and four municipal billboards should not be used to stick up the posters.

We also learn that Mr. Klepa is one of the most prolific workers in the city's social institutions, in many of them he holds the office of chairman and in general he belongs to the few representatives of the younger generation, who do not spare time and effort to do good deeds.

Mr. Klepa also deserves recognition outside of Kutno, he is the elected board member of the Union of Cities and chairman of the Mayors' Union of Small Cities.

We learn that in the office of Mayor of Kutno, Mr. Klepa has a very difficult and ungrateful task to fulfill. He is only the executive, completely dependent on the decisions of the city council, whose majority consists of elements that are at times hostile to the Polish interests of the city. The decisions of the city council are often degrading from the point of view of Polish feelings, but the mayor is not to blame, only the inhabitants who have chosen such council and tolerated it.

* * *

Now again about the school issue. The “Głos Kutnowski” No. 9, of Sunday 28 October 1925, begins with:

An unnerving rumor

Kutner's society was alarmed by the strange news that the new school building had to be used by Jews as well. At the moment, it is difficult to believe that Polish children should be deprived of their schools and replaced by Jews. Many Polish children cannot attend school because of a lack of premises – will Jewish children be superior to Poles? We are waiting for an explanation as to whether the rumor is correct.

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But if it was confirmed, it would provoke a great deal of bitterness among the local people. Isn't the incident in the Łódź school not enough for rejecting such idea?

We ask the inspector of the school: is the information correct and what does he intend to do to calm the inhabitants of Kutno?

A Kutner.

In his letter – informed the newspaper – the inspector gave the following explanation:

”The newly completed new school building marked with number 2 will be handed over for school purposes in about 10 days. In this large enough building, there will be a significant number of children, which will make it possible to relieve the overcrowded classes of other schools, apart from school No. 3, scattered throughout the city. During the transfer to the new school, the inspector had in mind the Jewish department on Podrzeczna Street. Therefore, a new Jewish class will emerge subordinated, truth to tell, to the administration of the new building. But with the exception that the Jewish students will not study on Shabbat. About whether the new school has other privileges and rights to the new school – it is not even to be spoken of. Even Jewish subjects will not be taught in class.”

This is how the school inspector feels. On the other hand, about the Jewish pretensions to the new school – we will elaborate in the next issue.

* * *

In the “Current News” column, the newspaper has informed its readers – using the poisonous language – about such incidents in Kutno:

The Red Mordke

Kutno, like all other cities in Poland, was preparing for the police holiday on September 20th of this year. All strata and groups of the organized and unorganized population, prepared for the most attractive demonstrations, to honor the Polish policemen. Our home-grown Bolsheviks also prepared, already working actively on the issue. Understandably, in their quiet manner, like moles, conspiratorial, by throwing and sticking-up flyers at night.

On the eve of the police holiday, one of the Kutner residents, passing the old market, noticed a Jew sticking on the walls one of the communist calls. He approached him, grabbed his hand and wanted to hand him over to the police. The Jew, however, escaped and fled. When he was quarreling with the Jew, the citizen looked into the face of the Jewish Bolsheviks and remembered them. Reporting this to the police, he also gave the appearance of the fugitive.

For several weeks the police searched energetically for the described Bolshevik, looking at many detainees at the police post – but the Kutner citizen, the “seer and not seen”, did not recognize in any of them the one that he had grabbed.

Finally, police searches yielded results. With the arrest and detention at the police post of a Jewish guy named Mordechai-Peretz Prync, the Kutner resident recognized the previously detained colporteur of the Communist blotting paper, whose characteristic “snout” was etched in his memory.

Mordechai Peretz, a 20-year-old merchant, brazenly denied any wrongdoing and was caught red-handed.

It is to be expected that Mordechai will abandon the tactic of denying everything and admit his guilt, while at the same time lifting the veil behind which the Communists are active. At the same time, we want proof of the extent to which the Jewish element fills the cadres of our native Bolsheviks. Then, will our darlings of Kutno City Council, the Mendelewiczes and other Combers, still have the nerve to be indignant at the use the S.S.S.[17] term “Jewish-Bolshevik bandits” and ask for criminal charges against the authors?

A happy alley

Strange things can be noticed on the Podrzeczna street, which is famous for its great “abundance” of drunks, although officially there is no single nightclub… No one broke his head to find out where the drunks come from, as they answer to the posed question with different curses.

Coincidentally, one of the hard liquor's supporters pointed to a bar on the same street, led by the well-known thief “The Black Harrow”. There were several characters completely forgotten, who danced with prostitutes under the sounds of a harmonica. The aforementioned “Black Harrow” is a Jewish woman who is in prison for her crimes and her younger sister Feiga runs the thriving business.

Perhaps the police would be preoccupied with the tickling question, because at night the inhabitants of Podrzeczna street are really exposed to the adventures of the various wasted drunks and vagrants.

* * *

Number 12 of “Głos Kutnowski” is extremely rich with Jew-eating material. Apart from the series of town council meetings (about which we will write later), in which the Jewish councilors are ridiculed and people shout at them, there are some notes, a serial-novel against Kutno municipal assembly, an article “On the Necessity of Fighting Jews” and a reader's account of how, during

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a minute of silence in honor of the descent into the tomb of unknown soldiers, he saw two people in a group not taking off their hats during the ceremony. After the minute of silence, the antisemitic reader did not hesitate to even chase the two Jews standing with their hats, triumphantly told that he has discovered the name of one of them and announced to the public:

The name of the kike, the Palestinian, the representative of the majority minority who, when all concentrated their thought and solemnly bent their uncovered head to pay homage to the bones of unknown soldiers, dared not take off their hat is – Majranc, owner of a hardware store on the New Market and a coal storehouse on Łęczyca street.

* * *

A second reader, the Polish merchant W. Lelewski, narrated:

A beautiful example

On Saturday 24th of this month, someone came into my shop and asked where Lewin lived. At first, I thought he was probably mistaken that he asked me, but after informing myself about what he wanted from Lewin, he replied that he wanted to buy paint.

I took him to the nearest pharmacy of Mr. Starzinski. The man, however, was insisting and did not want to enter a Polish business, explaining:

”Mr. Count Moszyński told me to buy only from Lewin. By the way, we buy everything there…”

* * *

How the Shabbat-goyim understand the slogan “Swój do swego po swoje

We have already written at the time that some municipality and tax officials were buying newspapers from the Jew Witkowski, avoiding the nearby newspaper kiosk of Pole Plazewski. One of the persons understood our appeal, but the others continued to support the Jew and boycott a Pole, because one could not call the action of these people other than a boycott. Anyway, at some point in the future we will have to dedicate a special section to this, where we will publish the names of the persecuted Polish souls.

It is very sad that those boycotting Poles include some Polish teachers – one working at Mrs. Yelska's pension and the other at the Men's Gymnasium. They constantly crawl to the Jew and buy newspapers.

These persons give a nice example of pedagogy to their students, as it is really difficult to demand an understanding of the Jewish peril from the simple and the unconscious, while intelligent people act in this way.

* * *

We will conclude our work with larger excerpts and detailed reports from public city council meetings in Kutno, which took place in late October and early November 1925, which are published with great precision, albeit with the usual antisemitic poison, in the two Kutno Polish weekly newspapers.

It is only here that the dignified and national attitude of all Jewish counselors, without exception, is expressed, their struggle they have had to stand from the Jew-eating representatives and the concern for the well-being of the Jewish population among our public representatives:

City Council Meeting – Monday, 26/10/25, 8:15 pm

The meeting was opened by Chairman, Mayor Klepa.

Agenda:

1) Read the minutes of the previous meetings. 2) Report to the council. 3) Report of realizing the budget for the year 1924. 4) Determining the municipal tax of the municipal workers, according to the decree of President of the State. 5) Opinion on the granting of Polish citizenship by Chana-Rivka Benenson, who lives in Kutno, at 115 Krośniewice Street, near Mr. Turbowicz. 6) Proposal from the Budget Commission to transfer Kutno to a higher category, in the area of wages for the municipal workers.

After reading the minutes of the previous meetings, the chairman told the city council that November 2 would be celebrated throughout Poland as a holiday of unknown soldiers, whose bones will be buried in a tomb in Warsaw that day. The city of Kutno will, at the initiative of the military, also celebrate this day and the city council is invited to take part in the demonstration.

The chairman then opened the discussion on the protocols he has read.

Councilor Comber points out that an urgent proposal has been made for dentist Masłowski, hired for the common public schools by the mayor. The proponent, Mr. Comber, in a horrible Polish, broadly substantiated his proposition, using during his speech his innate impudence, boisterous noise and occasional pounding of the fist on the table, terrorizing literally the entire council.

Mr. Comber first warned the mayor that, without any agreement and consultation with the other members of the district council, he had hired as high school dentist Mr. Masłowski for the general schools, giving him a greater allowance from those who were requested by other dentists in their offers.

After that, Mr. Comber again attacked Masłowski, dismissing him from all qualifications as a school dentist, because according to him, Masłowski is cruel – he beats the children with a whip that he carries with him constantly, is unfair, treats differently children of the poor

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parents and otherwise poor children. Masłowski does not have a dental office, and he takes the children to the public bath where he lives. For these reasons, no one is pleased with Mr. Masłowski – not the parents, not the children, not the school principals, on whom Masłowski complained before the school board.

”For what are we paying?” exclaimed with pathos councilor Comber, proposing to select a special commission of three councilors to look into the matter.

Councilor Fudałowicz[18] (“Bund”) supports Comber, considering it inappropriate for the mayor to act on his own to engage the dentist.

The chairman clarified that on behalf of the municipality he had the right to engage Masłowski, which is also in accordance with the decision of the city council. The city council should not be bothered either: if it is not happy with the dentist, it should ask him to be removed.

He also denies that Masłowski did not have the proper qualifications because he had a long experience, was a military dentist, now he is a dentist in the gymnasiums. In addition, he has been recommended by the principals, and this alone is the best attestation of his qualifications as a school dentist.

Concerning the blames for the incorrect fulfillment of duties by Mr. Masłowski, the chairman believes that once the proper work regulations are approved, they will be removed.

Finally, he supports Comber's proposal to select a special commission, provided that the commission conducts its work in consultation with school principals.

Councilor Comber opposes an agreement with the principals, as this would have a negative effect on the commission's independence.

The chairman put Comber's proposal on the commission to a vote. The proposal is unanimously accepted by the city council. The commission includes: Kostro, Piaskowski and Comber.

In the minutes it was written, with the consent of the town council, that the commission should conduct its activities in agreement with the school principals.

Afterwards, was read the interpellation of the Jewish councilors regarding the sanitary-exam point for examining prostitutes, which is found in the Jewish bath (mikveh), near the synagogue.[19]

The chairman clarified that at the time, he was intervening on the Jewish interpellation in the question at the Staroste, to whose competencies the matter belongs because the above is precisely dealt by the county sanitary authorities. The Staroste then agreed to release the building if the municipality provided another unoccupied premises.

Councilor Ajzman (Orthodox) complains about keeping the nurse just to treat prostitutes in the synagogue's neighborhood, seeing in it a profanation of the Jewish religious sentiments. He suggests that the municipality should turn to Staroste again in the question (councilor Comber shakes his head ironically, and laughs).

Mr. Comber suggests that the city buy the premises and, regarding Ajzman's offer to contact the Staroste, he thinks that this is his own way of referring to Dr. Troczewski[20] (Comber's analogy between the Staroste and Dr. Troczewski certainly refers to the equality of their feelings towards Jews).

Comber's proposal to buy corresponding premises in the city, the chairman considers too expensive and even unfeasible, because it is doubtful that any private landlord would agree in a house with tenants to arrange such an exam point.

Comber is therefore launching an open proposal to relocate the sanitary-exam point to the newly-built city bathroom, where “the women will come for examinations”.

Lay judge Mendelewicz, not wanting to be left behind by Comber, proposes an idiotic-stupid and joking proposal to put the point for 10 years in Jewish baths and for the next 10 years in the city baths.

Once the distinguished councilors had spoken their fill on the subject – and the clever little Jews had spat their gall on it – it took more than an hour to smooth out the petty issue, the capital decision was made that the municipality be authorized to negotiate it with the Staroste.

That's the same thing that happened months ago, or even a year ago.

According to the second item on the agenda, it was agreed to implement the 1924 budget. The chairman proposed that the council take note of the report. Comber is categorically against the proposal. He says the report needs to be submitted later in March of this year and if the matter has dragged on for more than half a year, it is the mayor who has obstructed the activity of the revision commission. In an unspeakable nervousness, the speaker still throws the mayor various things, revealing to the public all his affairs and incidents with the mayor, and with genuine hysteria he describes the mayor's action towards him as “disgusting” and “vulgar”.

It is astonishing that the chairman, for such remarks, not only did not remove the floor from Comber on the spot, who had already exceeded the measure, but even did not call him to order and waited until the bewildered councilor had finished his hysteria in order to “explain himself”, as he put it, from the blames.

Comber also mentioned the provincial commission, which investigated the communal economy and did not know from the investigation what was good and what was bad. The municipality does not write reports for this, while knowing it is necessary, but does it only when pressured from above.

The Council did not take note of the budget report,

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as it was not compiled in accordance with the books, an “ad hoc” commission was selected to deal with the matter. For a long time, the issue of selecting a commission has been debated. After a long and hard pain, the following councilors were persuaded to take part in the commission: Szymański, Wiśniewski and Bromberg.

As all councilors do not have proper accounting information, it was necessary to hire a certified accountant.

… We set out to address the following point of the agenda: to present an opinion on the granting of Polish citizenship to the Jewish Chaya-Rivka Benenson[21] of Kutno.

Her cause was well supported by councilors Comber, Ajzman, Piaskowski and Vice-Mayor Pągowski.

* * *

The extended issue number 12 of “Głos Kutnowski” (actually in 6 pages), half of the newspaper dedicated to the following report of the city council meeting, which occurred in continuations - the 25/10/25 and the 3/11/25. We take out of there the most important excerpts, especially those where the Jewish councilors came to express themselves.

… The question of buying Zawadzki's park for the city, which figured on the agenda of the meeting, aroused a significant interest and brought to light a relatively large plenum of councilors, as well as a full gallery.

… The meeting opened with the chairman, Mr. Klepa, and before he entered the agenda, he shared with the city council that a memorial had been erected on Kutner's cemetery in memory of the unknown soldier. The city needs to participate effectively in the construction, covering half, even three-quarters of the expenses. The corresponding amount must be determined for this purpose. As no one spoke for or against, the proposal was unanimously accepted.

After correcting a word in the minutes of the previous meeting, people approached the question of buying Zawadzki's park, introduced by the councilor Fudałowicz (“Bund”), and supported by Comber. The chairman controls the number of attendees, because according to the rules, when deciding to buy or buy municipal property, a qualified majority of two-thirds of councilors must be present. The chairman informed that the park owner Mr. Zawadzki demanded for the entire complex 250,000 złotys, of which 100,000 must be paid this year, and the remaining 150,000 split on installments over several years, at a proper percentage.

This evaluation of the buildings in the park was carried out by Eng. Kłonowski, and the condition of the trees by the forest ranger of the city forests in Gostynin whom the mayor brought here, and they said that the price for the park is not an exaggeration. Finally, the chairman thinks that buying the park is a great deal for the city, an opportunity.

Councilor Fudałowicz points out that the issue of buying Zawadzki's park has already been dealt with by the budget commission, but its report is unknown.

Councilor Comber states that the matter was settled by the budget commission, which decided it. 1) Consult a specialist whether the place i.e., the park, is appropriate from a health point of view, and if yes – 2) Contact a specialist to evaluate the value of the object. 3) The municipality will indicate the sources to cover the expenditure.

The speaker suggested that the matter be referred back to the Commission for treatment. The chairman replied that doctors had determined that the park was malarial, but Gostynin's forest inspector, Mr. Girzyński, stated that with proper chopping of the trees and clearing of the soil, the now humid area would be replaced by a perfectly healthy park, without any difficulty.

Councilor Kostro is opposed to buying the park, saying he believes it is important to carry out some investments.

Lay judge Nowakowski reiterates that the park is an opportunity and a bargain for the city, and should be bought.

Councilor Fudałowicz is of the opinion that it is better to build several schools [naturally, Jewish, comment from the young typesetter] and proposes to move over the matter to the agenda.

Councilor Jozef Szymański favors buying the park.

Lay judge Mendelewicz estimates that a spending of 30,000 złotys for the city, with a budget of 400,000 złotys, is not much. The rest will be paid to H. Zawadzki if he agrees that the debt will be paid off over 6 years.

Coucillor Ajzman corrects Mendelewicz, who talks about 30,000 złotys and does not see the obligation to Zawadzki for the 70,000 złotys that the city has and must already pay. The city cannot bear such a burden, especially since it is not able to buy, for example, a power plant, which is more useful for the city.

Lay judge Nowakowski is opposed to discussing the matter in public, only in a closed session.

Councilor Szymański (from the Left) votes to buy the park.

The debate was adjourned to a motion by the chairman, who ordered a closed-door meeting.

The chairman then suggested that in addition to the agenda, he gives the floor to official Gradowski, who would publicly answer Mr. Comber's objections to him at the last city council meeting.

Councilor Fudałowicz proposes a recess because the Comber-Gradowski incident took place during the meeting and was not recorded.

Comber's performance

After the recess, Mr Gradowski replied to the open accusation (denunciation) from Comber, that with all his work he finished

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at most three matters a day – taking a broad view of his work for the municipality.

Councilor Comber, naturally, did not accept the blame. He takes the floor – at first forlornly, since despite his inborn chutzpah and truly Jewish arrogance – he was nailed by Gradowski's declaration. He went back and forth like a fish, tangling his answer, getting neither here nor there. But he soon came to himself, and right then it was possible to see the performance-style of the perfidious, evasive, and sophistic eloquence of the Jew, who suggests and controls all Poland with his characteristic haughtiness. The accused took over the role of an accuser, bit by bit raising his voice, pounding with his fist on the table and ranting in his guttural Polish-Yiddish jargon, angrily designated Gradowski's intervention as an “attack” on him, in his capacity as a city councilor, an attack on personal grounds, since Gradowski feels hurt by him, etc. etc. Finally, the haughty Jewish sovereign declared that to answer Gradowski was… not worthwhile.

* * *

After the breakup, people agreed to consider the last item on the agenda – the issue of selling the so-called town-gate booth.

The chairman clarified that the town-gate booth (in Polish – “celbuda”), was a cottage on Kurniwiecke[22] Street, which was used to collect the barrier fee, as the booth is not located in urban areas, just close to Mr. Holcman's land, the municipality considers the building to be a remnant and plans to sell it to Holcman, who will take it over. As the house is occupied by a laborer, the buyer is obliged to provide him with a suitable dwelling.

As a result, there was no opposition, and the city council authorized the municipality to sell the booth, only with the caveat that Holcman would demolish the building by the deadline.

* * *

He joined the debate on the urgent proposal of Messrs. Kirszbaum, Fudałowicz, Piaskowski and colleagues, to prevent the increase of apartment rents and declare a moratorium for the unemployed.

Lay judge Nowakowski considers the proposal illogical, because in the event of it being accepted, it would have the effect of blocking the construction of houses. He proposes to move to the agenda and forward the item to the Sejm (laughter on the Jewish bench).

Councilor Fudałowicz: “I really want that…” She is not surprised that lay judge Nowakowski defends the class to which he belongs, the owner class, and therefore he can easily move on to the agenda. Today the rent is 44% above of pre-war and by January 1926 it will reach 50%, representing a quarter of the budget of an average worker. She holds that with such a resolution, it is necessary to go to the Sejm.

Councilor Szymański considers the resolution too short-sighted, as it will make it impossible to build houses. Only an abundance of apartments and competition will make the price of housing cheaper. Such a decision is questionable, it will not help the worker at all, because the homeowners will in any case draw a line.

Councilor Comber accuses in a sharper form lay judge Nowakowski's and Szymański's position, calling them by their names, for which the chairman calls him to order. He asks how many houses have been built since the law on development was introduced (the chairman: two houses this year!). The speaker further pointed out that the resolution has no impact on the energy invested in building new homes, which are free of tenant protection as the resolution only applies to old homes.

Councilor Szymański wants privileges to be granted only for one-room dwellings.

The chairman points out that there are fewer expulsions in Poland than in other countries. The limited amount of rent and several years of tenant protection would have hampered construction, which had only begun with the granting of loans for construction purposes. In Kutno, 15 such loans were issued.

After introducing several amendments by various councilors, the following decision was adopted by a majority of votes:

The city council authorizes the municipality to address the relevant authorities on behalf of the council and to refrain from raising the rent for the unemployed due to the general critical financial situation.

The meeting was closed.

* * *

Meeting of the City Council – 3/11/25

On the agenda – the issue of buying Zawadzki's park.

The chairman stated at the outset that today's meeting was devoted exclusively to the question of purchasing the park --- and now needs to finalize the decision, after which he announced that on Friday, October 30, the councilors and members of the budget committee, the Messrs. Y. Szymański, Chlebos, Mrs. Szymański and Ajzman, as well as the municipality members: Klepa, Nowakowski and Mendelewicz, were in the park, inspected the trees and buildings. After the visit, a protocol was drawn up.

The protocol states that the purchase of the park is a great business for the city and in this spirit the city council must decide. The first speaker, Councilor Kostro, spoke at the previous meeting, opposing the transaction. Lay judge Nowakowski was for it. The same for Councilor Lorzinski. Councilor Fudałowicz was against and proposed to build schools instead. Councilor Szymański considered the transaction a good opportunity, which would not be seen in many years.

The Jewish school bomb

Lay judge Mendelewicz stands up solemnly and takes the floor. One can see that he has a “bomb” on his chest, which irritates him and leads him to a “solemn doubt”, which

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is expressed in the nervous fidgeting of the papers in front of him.

In a total silence, he says:

– Last night, a group of councilors met for a consultation about the newly built school building. According to the city budget, 125,000 złotys were spent on the school building and the money was mainly coming from Jewish taxpayers, which means that the school was mostly built with Jewish money. The school must therefore, if not for half at least to a great extent, also be used by Jewish children. Nevertheless, Jewish children will not enjoy this school.

As it is possible that a similar story could happen to the park in the future, the Jewish group decided not to buy the park.

The chairman: The current issue of the park needs to be presented clearly, openly and definitively. Let the city know who is in charge of purchasing this much-needed park and who is against it, and at the same time let it know if anyone can take revenge on the city for an issue that has nothing to do with the park. The school matter is still an open and unfinished one. There will never be enough schools in Kutno and there will always be friction on the matter.

Afterwards, the chairman turned to lay judge Mendelewicz and asked him not to operate on his speeches with generalizations, moreover unfounded, such as for example, who pays more taxes, Poles or Jews, because such generalizations are based only on hypotheses, simply because the municipality does not keep any tax statistics.

About buying the park, explains the chairman, lay judge Mendelewicz himself who was for it until the last minute and now stands out so sharply against it. Doing so, he relied on Councilor Ajzman, who was not long ago an opponent to the buying of the park, but since last Friday he quickly changed his mind after, as a commissioner, he inspected the park both as an expert and as a merchant and concluded that the park would be a good deal for the city. He stands up clearly on the financial side of the transaction and requires that the city council confirms the purchase.

Councilor Comber explains that he does not trust the calculation made by the chairman at all, because many times the Finance and Budget Commission dealt with various investments, such as for example laying sidewalks from the train station to the gymnasium, or through the entire city, or the drainage canal, and the municipality repeatedly stated that it had no money.

Now, when it comes to buying the park, the representative of the municipality explains that for this purpose there is 30,000 złotys in cash. Where did the money suddenly come from? And when City Hall declares now that aside from that, it will provision another 70,000 złotys, it has absolutely no basis for that – and these are all speculations.

As for our revenge, which the mayor was talking about, it's something completely different. This is not about revenge. First and foremost, we need to make sure that all the inhabitants of our city, regardless of nationality or religion, are well-off, and that some are not disrespected. All are equal before the law, in particular to the city council. Then, the speaker moves on to the question of the newly built school-building, exposing to it his pretensions in the name of the Jews. He spoke on the subject for a long time, although it had no relevance to the agenda, without the slightest remark from the chairman.

Then the speaker switches to the park issue and the flaming Palestinian thunders with his voice:

– We doubt that at the moment of buying the park, a new evil will not happen to us Jews. Because there is a general opinion among the native Jews of our city that as soon as the park becomes the property of the city, none of us doubts that while we stay in the park, we will be offended by some “Get out of here faster, kike!…”

It seems to me that I am not mistaken. Yesterday I had a conversation on the subject with a serious person from the Endek party who also said the same thing.

Not having confidence in the whole issue - we will vote against it.

Councilor Ajzman explains to the astonishment of the municipality members that in his opinion, the rating of the park is too high. “The rating is paper”, jokes the speaker, “and paper is patient, very patient. One has to consider carefully which trees can be cut down, because if one does that with everyone, there will be no park. There is certainly no money remaining in the coffers, and we should not put a load on the city.”

Lay judge Mendelewicz: The chairman made me apologize for using generalizations, saying that Jews pay more taxes than the Poles. I can prove it. But even if Jews do not have to pay a single penny in taxes, they are entitled to equal rights!

J. Szymański: But no privileges! In the school board of trustees, the municipality is represented by Pągowski, Aumerski and me. Speaking at a hearing on the issue of handing over the new school to Jews, Aumerski dared to say, “I will rather be stoned here than let the Jews enter the school.” Mr. Pągowski also voted against me on this matter. The one and only mayor, although not a member of the commission, has questioned whether we should pass. But the school inspector, when I told him that Jewish children would not enjoy the school, told me: “Just as you guessed. But not entirely, because according to the elaborated plan, the children of Sieciechów, Kościuszków[23] and the surrounding villages will learn in the new school.” I replied that the school would be for children from further areas, and that the children from the Podrzeczna, Kolejowa and Królewska streets will not have access to it.

The chairman rebuked the speaker for not addressing the issue correctly. These are all stories and not facts. Children outside the city will be educated in a school, but first there must be a place for the children of the city. The school question needs to be treated calmly, moderately and not indulge in one's own maliciousness and wickedness. He is careful

[Page 130]

not to deviate from the topic and stick to the facts.

Councilor Comber: One of the counselors said earlier that we Jews demand privileges.

Lay judge Nowakowski: Privileges are for the residents…

Councilor Comber: If for the residents, as you say, neither the mayor nor Mr. director can be here.

The chairman called the speaker to order.

Councilor Comber: The representative of the municipality in the board of trustees must take into account the decision of the city council. The Messrs. Aumerski and Pągowski need to do this, and if they do not want to, they should resign.

Lay judge Aumerski: I did not vote for a Jewish school.

Councilor Lorzinski: The park has been appraised by experts, among them councilor Ajzman, who was simply taken aback by the condition of the trees, stating that the issue could cost very serious sums of money. Now Mr. Ajzman has changed his mind. I think this happened under the influence of the unfortunate school issue, about which the Jewish councilors decided on Monday for their consultation.

Councilor F. Szymański (from the left) is for buying the park, he's just scared the price! 250,000 złotys. Perhaps Mr. Zawadzki could reduce it a bit. The speaker is surprised that instead of talking about the park, the Jewish councilors only talk about the school. He is amazed by the Jewish pretensions that the school's language of instruction should also be Yiddish, which is not present in any country, in Europe or in America (Councilor Comber: “Are you a white…”). You want to learn Yiddish and can't speak Polish properly – you cannot. You do not have such rights anywhere in the world, that's why you do not have them with us either.

Mr Kostro points out that one has to stick to the agenda, otherwise one will not speak until the next morning.

The chairman stated at the outset, about Comber's rejection, that he will answer only about the park, avoiding the school issue, because it has nothing to do with the agenda. Before the vote, he ordered a five-minute interruption.

The councilors slowly rise from their places. There is a noticeable hatred among the Jewish councilors, who at the moment, regardless of their political convictions, are huddled in a group. Among the passionate Palestinians, young and old, there were two activists: Comber and Mendelewicz. A strange harmony of the two Jews, who sit at opposite sides. Mendelewicz even bows to the extreme Bolshevik left-wing group (“Bund”) in the person of councilor Fudałowicz and to the other Jew, gesturing passionately, he clarifies something in haste. The serious ones, in long orthodox robes, Ajzman and Bromberg, shake their beards and blink cunningly with their eyes. They are already “on the same page” with the progressives without sidelocks, beards and coats.

The five minutes go by and one sees the wall of unified Jewish solidarity. There are rumors circulating that the proposal to postpone the purchase will be put to the vote. Therefore, a capitulation of the municipality. This can be read from the chairman's face, who comes out of his office and sits down heavily at the presidium table.

The municipality's calculation now begins, to figure out the eventual majority. No result is certain, as it is up to Councilor Szymański who proposes to postpone the question of buying the park and select a commission, which should better consider the question.

R. Comber considers the offer out of date, as the chairman has explicitly stated that the purchase must be finalized today. He believes that at the current meeting, one must in principle decide: buy or not buy.

Chairman: We are aware that Mr. Comber wants to dispose of the issue. We however seize on the last life-buoy. We put aside the municipality's principled proposal to continue negotiations, keeping the purchase as desired, or… (he counts attentively), this will not be possible – he finally explains.

Lay judge Mendelewicz: You have to decide on a municipality's offer, whether to buy…

Chairman (to Mendelewicz): Therefore – opposition?

After recounting the votes, he declared:

– In case the municipality's proposal is rejected, it would not receive the required two-thirds of the votes, but it would have a majority.

Lay judge Mendelewicz: The proposal will never get a qualified majority without the support of the Jews.

Following an exchange of words, Szymański's proposal was put to the vote. All without exception, the Jewish councilors voted against, wanting to take revenge, according to their reached agreement between themselves – for the sake of the school…

* * *

Regarding the aforementioned town council meetings, the other Kutner weekly “Głos Kutnowski” writes (No. 46, 15/11/25):

Jewish obstruction

The Jewish councilors in the city council said they were constantly obstructing and warned that no decision would be passed without their votes. The reason for this is the disappointment that befell the Jews in the newly built school building. Recently, the city council made an unreasonable decision that require Jewish children to study at the new school. It is understood that the school authorities did not carry out this decision. Hence the anger of the Jews, who think that they are being ostracized, that they are paying the biggest taxes, so they have the biggest right to the school etc. They even demand separate Jewish schools, with Yiddish as the language of instruction.

Let's take a look at what wrong the Kutner Jews did. There are no separate schools for Polish children. The Jews, on the other hand, have a Jewish school for their children, in which no Christian is

[Page 131]

accepted. In addition, Jewish children are admitted to general schools where Polish children are educated. We can therefore see that the Jews enjoy special privileges and that their virtue is an imaginary one. The government does not have an obligation to set up separate schools for them, because first of all a general school system must be introduced, that is, schools for all. True, there is a regulation about this, that Jews can have schools in which one does not learn on Shabbat, meaning, schools for Jewish children, where there will be an appropriate cost. But this is their right and the duty of the government. This is a right of a national minority and Jews need not forget that they are a minority.

We have heard that one of the Jewish councilors allowed himself to compare the most obvious atrocities against the Jews in Poland with those from which the Poles suffered under Russian rule. This is an error. The Poles, even under the tsarist regime, did not cease to be a majority in Poland, did not cease to be the owners of their Polish land and, even among the Moskals[24], never were a national minority or a minority of the majority. They fought for a Polish school, to which they had a right, and striving for certain achievements, they had to support the Polish school alone, because the Russian government did not give a damn about it. In the fight for the Polish school, Jews did not participate, on the contrary, they filled the Russian state gymnasiums, boycotting the Polish schools. In Poland, the Jews have Jewish schools, about which there is no struggle although they think in an insufficient number. Are there as many public (general) schools for Christians as schools for Jewish children?

In this Kutno, the Jews now allow themselves to make very untenable and literally provocative pretensions and demands, because they feel that they are present in a relatively large number. But they are a minority and need to understand that this minority can be further diminished. The time is not far off when there will be 10,000 railway workers, Christians. Then the ratios will change. The threats of the reckless Jews can be applied against themselves.

* * *

This is what Jewish-Polish relations in Kutno looked like 40 years ago. With changes, highs and lows, the coexistence of both peoples took shape. Until the bloody flood came and wiped everything out - including the dream of the local anti-Semites to turn the Polish minority into a majority, by bringing down 10,000 railway workers to Kutno. In 1940, Kutno was incorporated into the “Third Reich” and the Germans began to colonize and germanize the area, so that, again, the Poles were transformed into a minority…

History, with its whims, disasters, and transformations, has repeated itself. But Kutno Jews were already not a factor in the struggle. They shared the tragic fate of the cut off 3 million Polish Jews…

 

Translator's footnotes:
  1. Mendelewicz and H. Wajnsztajn – Zionists, Ajzman and Bromberg – Agudat Israel, N. Wajnsztajn – Merchants' Union, Z. Comber – Populists; Kirszbaum and Ewa Pudlowicz-Kirszbaum – “Bund”. Return
  2. Polish, “Voice of Kutno”. Return
  3. Polish, “Kutno Weekly”, an antisemitic newspaper. Return
  4. Polish, “Social Help Association”. Return
  5. Polish, can mean “Development”, “Growth”, “Progress”… Return
  6. Polish slogan, calling for boycott of non-Polish businesses, originally the Germans at the beginning of the 20th century, but later directed at Jewish businesses in-between the World Wars. Return
  7. word unknown to us, but looking like a Polish word, unknown to the dictionary. Obviously pejorative. Return
  8. maybe a “Nikolay”, a common Russian name, meaning a Russian soldier. Pejorative in Poland, especially in the aftermath of the Polish-Soviet war of 1920. Return
  9. Polish expression for someone who speaks without thinking and subject to laughter. The expression originally meant someone easily scared. Return
  10. in Yiddish “unzerike” meaning “our own”, i.e., “Jews”, that they consider their real own. Return
  11. pejorative, as it means someone who would leave Poland for Palestine, making other people think that Jews are not happy there. Return
  12. the translation of this sentence was confused: it was probably talking about the Police Week celebrations, for which the day can be set to any day of that week and therefore avoid happening during the Jewish holidays. Return
  13. Rabbi Chaim Szapiro was executed on a false accusation of spying for the Bolsheviks, in 1920. Return
  14. in Aramaic in the original text, “ mene, mene, tekel, upharsin”, lit. “numbered, numbered, weighed, and divided”. Interpreted by Daniel to be the divine warning of the destruction of the kingdom of Babylon. In other words, the author of this article announces that the Poles will destroy the Polish Jewish community. Return
  15. by the Jewish watchmaker Yaakov-Shalom Haller (David Sztokfisz). Return
  16. see article on page 292 of this book. Return
  17. abbreviation of the Polish antisemitic boycott slogan “Swój do Swego po Swoje”. Return
  18. Ewa Fudałowicz, spouse of Bund leader Herman Kirszbaum. Return
  19. The “point” was created in 1915 by the Germans, who had occupied Kutno. Return
  20. Dr. Antoni Troczewski (1 June 1861, Łomża – 22 September 1928, Kutno), was one of the founders of the antisemitic weekly newspaper “Tygodnik Kutnowski”. Return
  21. previously named “Chana-Rivka Benenson”. Return
  22. maybe a wrong spelling of “Krośniewicka”. Return
  23. Kościuszków is today inside the city limits but Sieciechów is still one kilometer north of these. It is therefore doubtful that there were many Jews, if any in those places. Return
  24. pejorative, “Russians”. Return

 

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