The Book of Dembitz
(Dębica, Poland)

50°03' / 21°25'

Translation of Sefer Dembitz

Edited by: D. Leibl, Association of former residents of Debica

Published in Tel Aviv, 1964 (Hebrew, 296 pages)



Project Coordinators

Marc Seidenfeld and


Our sincere appreciation to Mayer Goldman and Menachem Ofer, of the Dembica Landmanshaft in Israel,
for permission to put this material on the JewishGen web site.

This is a translation from: Sefer Dembitz (The Book of Dembitz), ed. by D. Leibl,
Association of former residents of Debica, Tel Aviv, 1964 (Hebrew, 296 page).

Note: The original book can be seen online at the NY Public Library site: Debica

Purchase details for a printed copy of this book can be found at

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The Book of Dembitz

{Page 4}

This book was published through the efforts of the organization of Dembitz emigres in Israel, which was founded in 5711 (1950-1951). The members are: Ruchama Bornstein, Yehuda Gruenspan, Fruma Grosman (Salomon), Pinchas Sommer, Aka (Rivka) Zilbershatz, Asher Salomon, Yitzchak Freiman, Rivka Shenker, Matilda Siedlisker, Reuven Siedlisker, Chaim Shneps organized by Daniel Leibel.

“The Book of Dembitz” attempts to portray the city as it was without any ideological censorship. It does not claim to exhaust the task, it is sufficient if it succeeds in establishing a memorial for our birthplace and for the Jewish life that was cut off by the enemy.

The essays and lists are in Hebrew or Yiddish, in whichever language they were originally written, with the exception of the chapter on the history of the community at the beginning, and the chapter on the Holocaust at the end, which appear both in Hebrew and Yiddish.

Published by “Achdut” company, Tel Aviv.




{Page 202}

Translation from English to Polish

Translated by Ireneusz Socha

Translated by Jerrold Landau

[Yiddish articles are marked with a star*]

Preface / Daniel Leibel 5
History of the Jews of Dembitz / Dr. N. M. Gelber 9
History of the Jews in Dembitz* / Dr. N. M. Gelber 15
Until the First World War 25
The city and its Rabbis 27
Enlightenment and Zionism 33
The Workers' Organization 36
Memories as Things Were 41
Jews in Local Government * 41
Parliamentary Elections * 42
Once upon a time there was… / Ruchama * 43
The Beginning / Naftali Shnier * 47
Dembitzer Jews / Mendel Wilner * 49
Reb Shlomo Mordkovitch* / Naftali Shnier 53
Jokers / N. Sh. * 53
The Jewish Heart * 55
Theater * 55
The Baking of Matza Shmura / Yehuda Pechter 56
Dembitz Cameos / Daniel Leibel * 57
In Szkoła * 58
Rabbi R. Ruvn's Sabbaths * 57
Skating * 59
Between Two Worlds * 60
The Barracks * 62
Nicknames * 62
Images (I) 64
Yitzchak Laufbahn 65
The Modest One / Yosef Shprintzak of blessed memory 66
Yehuda Bornstein 66
In the Path of Hashachar / Dov Sadan 68
Between Two World Wars 74
War and Exile 75
Destruction and Rebuilding * 75
The First Elections after the War 77
A Community under Government Scrutiny 78
Assistance and Charity 79
The Assistance of Poor and Sick 79
The Orphanage and Assistance for Brides 81
The Final Civic Elections 82
Images (II) 86
Bendet Fett / R. B. D. L. * 87
Dr. Pinchas Laufbahn / Yitzchak Freiman 88
Tzvi Wolf / R. B. * 89
Shemaya Widerspan 90
Ben-Tzion Widerspan / A. Haber 90
Shimon Grünspan / Y. Bar-Yitzchak 91
Rivka Diament / Henia Grin-Heistein 92
Youth Movements 94
Debora / Rivka Faust 95
Hanoar Hatzioni / Aka Zilbershatz, Pinchas Sommer 96
Young Mizrachi / Asher Salomon 105
The Shomer Hadati Youth Movement / Moshe Sarid, Siedlisker 108
“Gordonia” / Yehuda Grünspan 110
Young Borochov / Manya Grünspan 112
The “Bar Kochba” Sport Organization 114
The Field of Education 118
The Field of Education 119
The Hebrew School / Avraham Weinberg 119
My Hebrew Schools / Manya Grünspan 123
Meir Stieglitz of blessed memory 124
Beis Yaakov / P. Salomon-Grosman 124
Recognition of Awakenings 126
Awakenings in an Alien Land / Yehuda Grünspan 127
A) From the Early Days 127
B) In the Cheder 128
C) In School and Gymnasia 133
From My Memories / Edna Perelberg 137
The Holocaust 141
The Murder of the Jews of Dembitz / Reuven Siedlisker-Sarid 141
The Murder of the Jews of Dembitz * 148
Jumping off the Train to Belzec / Bronia Oling-Burg * 156
22 Months Hiding with the Gentiles / Perel Faust of blessed memory * 159
One Was Saved / Ben Steinhauer * 162
Thus were they Murdered / P. F. * 163
Reb Israel Leib Frankel / Moshe Unger (Jacob) * 165
A Bitter Lament / Yehuda Gruenspan 168
Jumping off the Train ... / Bronia Oling-Burg 170
22 Months Hiding with the Gentiles / Perel Faust 173
One Was Saved... / Ben Steinhauer 175
From Among the Righteous Gentiles 175
The Cradle of our Youth / Ruchama Bornstein * 177
The Terebinth of Weeping 183
List of Martyrs of Dembitz 185
Photographs 203
Holocaust Righteous Gentiles Recognized by Debica  

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