A Memorial to the
Jewish Community of Turek, Poland

52°02' / 18°30'

Translation of
Turek Sefer Zikaron le-kehilat Turek ve-li-kedoshehah

Edited by Eliezer Esterin

Published by the Turek Organization in Israel, Tel Aviv 1982



Project Coordinator

Ada Holtzman z”l


Our sincere appreciation to Dr. Michael Seiffe, of the Turek Society in Israel,
for permission to put this material on the JewishGen web site.

This is a translation from: Turek Sefer Zikaron le-kehilat Turek ve-li-kedoshehah
(A Memorial to the Jewish Community of Turek, Poland), Edited by Eliezer Esterin,
Published by the Turek Organization in Israel, Tel Aviv 1982, Hebrew, Yiddish, English, 468 pages

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Front cover - tur000.jpg [25 KB]




Abraham Shlonsky

The Oath

 By these eyes that have seen the woe and the grief
Their outcries heaving to my hearts' embrace,
By this compassion which taught me:
Forgive till the time did come too awful for grace -
I have taken this oath: as I breathe and live,

To forget not a thing
Of that which took place
Till the tenth generation forget not,
Till each of my insults be completely assuaged,
Till the last of my lashes has chastened their lot
Cry heaven, if in vain passed that night of rage,
Cry heaven, if by morning I resume my trod,
not learning the lesson taught me by this age

The Oath - tur001.jpg [25 KB]


Translated by Ada Holtzman

Article Author Page
The Shtetl Turek (a Geographic and historic survey) Hebrew   14
From the history of the Polish Jewry   11
Turek during World War I (Yiddish) 31
The Jewish settlement from its beginning until the outbreak of World War II  According to Icchak Seiffe, Sz. Glube and A. Sz. Benkel 34
The occupations of Turek Jews Sz. Glube 40
The beginning of the Weaving Industry in Turek Abraham Szlomo Benkel (based on the stories of grandfather Eliezer Waks) 48
The Weaving Industry Israel Dawid Beth Halevi 50
The Turek Jews' way of life
  • The Melamdim in Turek (teachers)
  • The Yeshiva in Turek (Talmudical college)
  • The various activities of the Jewish community
  • Religious personnel (Hazanim - cantors, Shohatim - ritual slaughterers, shamashim - beadles)
  • Welfare and relief institutions
  • Parnasim & Dozores - supporters and Trustees of the community
  • Weddings and Kleizmerim (popular Jewish musicians)
Icchak Seiffe and Akiwa Shmueli 52
Entertainment and theater in Turek   66
The modern heder Yochanan Kriza 72
The Rabbis of Turek
  • R' Baruch Bendet Gliksman
  • R' Dawid-Haim Braun
  • R' Hersz Lajb Waksman
  • R' Pinchas Wengrow
Zeew Kibel and Icchak Seiffe 75
The world of Torah and good deeds which is gone
  • R' Mendel Szmul
  • R' Jakob Mas (Mordowicz)
  • R' Herszel Shochet (Zajler)
  • R' Alter Wajnrajch father of R' Eliezer Wajnrajch
  • R' Welwel Mozes
  • R' Israel Mosze Ziskind
  • R' Yehoshua Alter Glycenstein
  • R' Abraham Szubinski
R' Icchak Yedidya Frenkel 79
The Hassidim of Turek Icchak Seiffe 85
The enlightenment movement in Turek Icchak Seiffe 87
The Zionist Movement Icchak Seiffe 90
The “Turnverein” (Sport association)   98
The “Mizrachi” Movement in Turek Yehuda Aharon Widawski 100
From the “Hatsfira” newspaper   107
The boy scout pioneer movement (“Hashomer Haleumi”) Szlomo Szubinski 115
“Hanoar Hazioni” (the Zionist youth) Hachshara at the Szubinski House - preparation to immigration to Eretz Israel (memoirs) Nitza Katzir (Mekalisz) 124
“Agudath Israel” Rabbi Haim David Ojerbach 127
“Linath Zedek” Meir Jankelewicz 131
The Artisan Association and the Popular Bank Zeew Kibel 133
The Union of the Jewish Tailors Zeew Kibel 135
The “Bund” Y. Shachor 137
The Communist Movement in Turek Z. K. 141
In the Shtetl Turek (Hebrew) Kalman Hajszrek (from his book “in Fire and Blood”)   143
-"- (Yiddish) -"- 148
The alyia from Turek and its contribution to the erection of Eretz Israel Y. Shachor 153
The Pat Family Icchak Seiffe 159
The family Kriza Yochanan Kriza 162
Eliahu Stempa (“Elia”)   165
The unforgettable Jewish Turek
  • R' Aba Szajnyak
  • Righteous women
  • Father's home, the lithography
  • My friend Zalman from Siedlce
  • The effect of the Enlightenment Period and Zionism
Rafael Litmanowicz 167
I am a native of Turek Mosze Rozetti 176
The Shtetl Michael Kopel 179
Once Upon a Time... Szlomo Szubinski 182
Turek town of the spring of my life  Michael Lewi (Mendel) Ben Mordechai 188
Persons and images (memoirs)
  • Jakob KiwalaJakob Yah
  • The Rosz family
  • Hagar and her husband Hersz-Michael
  • Szlomo Treger (Goldstein)
  • Dawid-Lajbusz who had 6 fingers
  • The “Boidemete” beggar
  • Towards the Sabbath in Turek
Yona Mendelblat z”l 195
The shtetl Turek - “Hamatmid” school in Ramat Gan, Israel, has adopted and commemorated the shtetl Turek   200
The blind Gabriel - one of the typical person of the shtetl - written by a pupil in the 8th grade of “Hamatmid” Ramat Gan, Israel Hadasa Szubinski 201
The children's manner of life Hadasa Szubinski and Moti Rozenberg 202
Mosze Fajnkind (public activist, writer and historian) Icchak Seiffe 203
R' Yehoszua Alter (Glicenstein) Abraham Szlomo Benkel 207
Chanoch (Henrik, Enrico) Glicenstein (1870-1942), the great artist, biography; Translated poems   208
Chanoch Glicenstein Emanuel Romano (the artist's son) 217
The artist in his home birth (speech in the remembrance ceremony to Henrik Gilcenstein in Tel Aviv 1942) Yehuda Frenkel 217
Kalman Hajszrek Icchak Seiffe 221
Cwi Bikowski Icchak Seiffe 224
Cwi Bikowski (one of the foundation men) Cwi Livna 226
To the memory of Cwi Bikowski Yona Mendelblat z”l 227
We learned from him Rachel and Jakob Kohensztam 229
R' Abraham Piotrekowski and his family immigrate to Eretz Israel A. Kriza 230
Mosze Warszawski Icchak Seiffe 232
Icchak Warszawski   237
A truthful man - about the personality of Knesset (Israel Parliament) member: R' Szlomo Zalman Jankelewicz son of Jakob Meir Jankelewicz 241
The convincing speaker (following the death of R' Zalman Ben Jakob) A. Rivlin 244
Icchak Wartski, a great scholar Icchak Seiffe 247
Icchak Izidor Wartski
In memory of Icchak
George Weber 251
Eliezer Wajnrajch Yochanan Kriza 255
R' Jakob Rubinstein A. Spinka 256
R' Henoch Berfman Y. Kriza 258
R' Simcha Bunim Merber R' Szmuel (Semek) Rozenboim Vardi (grandson) 260
The members of the Zionist Committee in Turek Sz. Sz. 262
R' Zeew Wolf Mozes (Mozisz) (from the book “The History of Kalisz Jews”, 1961, pages 206-208) Israel Dawid Beit-Halewi 263
Israel Kohen (Kohan)   265
Israel Kiwala   267
Aharon Sztarkman   268
A distinguished person: Yehuda Tondowski Szraga Bar Sela (Stempa) 269
Icchak Bernstein (from the book “Plock”, page 407)   271
Eliahu Rozenboim (from a memorial booklet published by Kibbutz Usha 1945) Szlomo Szubinski 273

“Thy glory O Israel is slain upon thy high places: how are the mighty fallen!”
(II Samuel I;19) Sons of Turek who befell in battle during WWII,
the Jewish Brigade and Israel wars for independence

Gad son of Mordechai and Lea Ben-Shalom (née Tauba)
Chaim son of Abraham Goldys (of the Bykowski family)
Jakob son of Mosze and Bluma Noifeld
Yair son of Mosze and Towa Zys née Szubinski
Yosef son of Dawid and Regina Kopel
Jakob son of Mosze and Janina Szilah née Lewinski
Michal son of Jakob Izbicki
Miriam daughter of Meir and Melcia Binstok
Rafael son of Eliezer and Rachel Wajnrajch
Szlomo son of Yochanan and Cyla Kopel
Szlomo son of Abraham Deser Blessed be their memory!

The Holocaust 1939-1945
The history of the Holocaust A.A. 281
To remember or not to remember
  • At least 600 years
  • Poland is being conquered
  • Source of evil (a poem)
Jakob Beser son of Zalman 286
How it started Ajzik Rasz 291
The destruction of Turek Jewish community (according to testimonies of Ajzik Rasz, Miriam Zajdenberg and the author)
  • How it started - nomination of the Judenrat
  • The first persecutions
  • A ghetto erected
  • The synagogue set on fire
  • The abuse of the melamed (teacher)
  • From what did the Jews live of in the ghetto?
  • The big deceit (“Kolonie”)
  • Poznań force labour camp (Bar Sela)
  • In the “Kolonie”
  • The liquidation
Szraga Bar Sela (Stempa) 299
The suffering of the Turek girls Miriam Zajdenberg (née Graundes “di Wajse” (“the White") written by Szraga Bar Sela 309
In those dreadful days - testimonies of Eliezer and Icchak Orbach Akiwa Shmueli 315

The Ten Martyrs executed in the “Kolonie” Kowale Pańskie, in public hanging:
Zajman Mosze from Turek
Lewkowicz Chajmal from Turek
Noiman, son-in-law of Goldblum from Turek
Liek Icek Yudel from Uniejów
Jakobowicz Marian from Uniejów
Podchlebnik Machel from Dobra
Czoskola Szymon from Dobra
Gelbart from Tuliszków Klein from Koło
Polkowski from Pęczniew;
The two girls who were shot to death: Raur Bela and Krakocka Ester

The Jews of Turek during the Nazi occupation
  • 1st November 1939 The transfer to the “Kolonie” Heidemühle (Kowale Pańskie)
  • The liquidation of the “Kolonie”
  • Public hanging (told by Rafael Yachin (Yachimowicz)
  • Building the bunker
  • The last “Aktion” (akcja) before the final liquidation
  • Summer of 1943 in ghetto Łódż
  • The spring of 1944
  • The liquidation of ghetto Łódż
Szmuel Glube 320
-"- (Yiddish) -"- 341
Memoirs by Yochewet Rozencwajg (Podchlebnik) Michael Lewi 376
My sufferings during WWII Yona Fresajzen 380
My sufferings during WWII (Yiddish) Yona Fresajzen 391
In the ghetto and in the forests - Cypora Zomer (Tobiak) - interview by two pupils Eti Zomer and Mirit Radiwal
  • Introduction
  • The “Juden Kolonie”
  • Forced Labour camp in Poznań
  • The escape from Poznań
  • With the Polish family Blaszkowski and Aleksander and Juzefa Miliewo
  • The problems which occurred while I stayed at the Blaszkowski house
  • The end of the war
  • Searching my relatives
Michael Lewi 405
Władysławów (Russocice)   412
A document from Chełmno(Yiddish & Hebrew)   414
Chełmno - Death Camp Jakob Waldman (survived the Nazi Holocaust but was killed by Polish underground A.K. on 1.9.1945 416

Names of elderly men, sick and children who were shot on spot during the
deportation to Chełmno from the “Kolonie” on 27.7.1942:
Zamulek Stein, Lenczicki Szlomo from Uniejów who dug his own grave
and was shot there with his dumb deaf boy;
grandfather Lajb Czelnik with grandmother;
Warcki Luzer and his wife from Turek;
Lisak from Turek;
Szczeszynski Menachem from Turek;
Berkowicz Gitel from Turek;
Lubinski Chanoch from Turek;
Lewinowa from Turek;
Katar Mordechai from Turek;
Fajwisz Mendel from Turek;
Czoskola from Turek;
Berger Abraham from Uniejów;
Eliasz Szlomo from Turek;
Jakobowicz from Turek;
Deser Jakob from Turek;
Zalberg Issaschar from Turek;
Friedland Yeszaya from Brudzew;
Bild Josef from Turek;
Muchnicki from Turek;
Czoskola Szmuel from Turek;
Tauba Abraham from Tuliszków

Rychwal (Konin District)   422
Tuliszków (Konin District)   424
The speech of Rabbi Icchak Yedidia Frenkel (chief rabbi of Tel Aviv) in the annual Remembrance Assembly of Turek Jews year 5726 (1966)   425
Turek after the Holocaust Icchak Frenkel 428
Various speeches from the Remembrance Assemblies held in Tel Aviv for Turek Jews
  • 14 Av, 5628 (8.8.1968)
  • 13 Av, 5629 (28.7.1969)
  • 14 Av, 5630 (16.8.1970)
  • 13 Av, 5632 (24.7.1972)
  • 14 Av 5634 (1.8.1974)
Benjamin Seiffe 429
“You Will Tell It to Your Son...” Szraga Bar Sela (Stempa) 435
Remember! Do Not Forget! M. L. 439
Partial list of the Holocaust Martyrs of Turek, Rychwal & Tuliszkow
(Hebrew) The necrology list (translation to English)
The Vow Abraham Shlonski 451
Bibliography   452
Corrections of typos and mistakes   453
The English Part   I-XVIII
Photograph captions    

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