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[Pages 161-164]

Movements and Currents
in the Lives of Częstochowa Jews


From My Memories
of the Zionist Organization in Częstochowa

Dawid Koniecpoler

The World Zionist Organization started its days when its foundation was announced – at the first Zionist congress in Basel, which was named after its leader, T. Herzl z”l.

As early as 1898, it was represented in Częstochowa by the dedicated Zionist public figure, Natan Gerichter, who was relentless in his work to propagate the Zionist ideal among our townspeople, despite the many difficulties that hindered him.

His first working colleagues in the organisation were Mendel Horowicz, Welgrin, Zeew Gostynski, M. Mokraujer, the engineer Ratner, R. Fiszman, Szymszon Mass, M. Rozencwajg and others whose names I've forgotten.

With the foundation of “Keren Kayemeth Le'Israel“, Natan Gerichter was appointed its agent. He carried out his duties dedicatedly and excellently until the day of his death.

After his passing, his son Jechiel took his father's place and he, too, distinguished himself in his dedication to this National Fund until his last day (until the accursed Nazis put an end to his life, which he had always dedicated to Zionism and the revival of [the nation of] Israel in its land).

Although, over the years, other Zionist organizations from all the currents of this world movement were established in our city, ultimately, the other Zionist organisations saw in it a “mother“, which had laid the foundations from which they, too, had originated and branched out.


A memorial service for Dr. Ch. Herzl
on Tamuz 20th 5694 [July 3rd 1934]
Seated: Dr. Mering, Dr. Bram and Szmidt;
Standing: Turner, Szajnfeld and Orbach


In 1917, all the movements, with the World Zionist Organization at their head, began to widen the scope of their activities in all areas of public life.

The Hebrew high school in our city was established. It introduced new educational modes and [a new] learning system. The Hebrew language assumed its proper place. Young people began studying it with doubled enthusiasm and began reading its literature. The language became a living language among the young men and women who flocked to the youth movements, in which they also received instruction and training for their future in the land of Israel.

At that time, the Zionist Organization was headed by Dr. Arnold Bram, Jechiel Gerichter, Jechiel Jochimowicz, Abram Luzor Szajnfeld, Natan Dawid Berliner, Abram Gerszonowicz, Leon Kopinski, City Councilor Fiszel Szapira, Zeew Icek and others. All of them also saw to the infiltration of the Zionists into all municipal institutions – the City Council, the Kehilla and financial and public institutions. They took central positions in them, thanks to the high level of responsibility and the commitment to public affairs in which they always excelled.

Naturally, they were helped in their work by the aid they received from central Zionist institutions and by the frequent visits from the Zionist leaders to our city.

Among those leaders who visited Częstochowa, the names of Izaak Grünbaum, Dr. Yehoshua Tahun, the Sejm deputy Hartglas, Dr. Zalman Bychowski, Dr. Yehoshua Gottlieb and Dr. Izaak [Ignacy] Schipper should be mentioned.

One special chapter in the life of the Zionist Organization in our city, which is noteworthy, is its trusty and almost predominant participation in organising receptions for important guests from the land of Israel. These included visits by the national poet Ch. N. Bialik, Yitzhak Ben–Zvi, Dr. Shmaryahu Levin, Leib Yaffe, Rabbi Gold, Rabbi Dr. M. Nurock and many others who came in the name of other Zionist organizations and for whom the Zionist Organization provided exemplary hospitality.

The Zionist Organization also imparted its spirit to different financial organisations, which supported the Zionist cause. It especially helped to found the “Ha'Chalutz–Craftsmen“ at the head of which stood Jakob Lewkowicz, Abram Gotlib and the writer of these lines.

(The cup of sorrows from which Polish Jewry drank also harmed the Zionist Organisation and only [a few] individuals were saved from annihilation by Hitler's troops, may his name be obliterated).

[Pages 163-174]

Documents on the History
of Zionism in Częstochowa

W. H.

We have been able to extract, from the depths of the Central Zionist Archives in Jerusalem, a number of documents whose contents bear witness to the fact that Zionism sprouted roots in our city from the beginning of its creation – still during the life of the movement's creator, Dr. T. Herzl z”l.

We publish in our book several photographs of those documents which have historical value.


Szlojme Bromberg Writes to Dr. Herzl z”l

We publish here a print of that letter in its entirety, seeing as how it is relevant to the research of the history of Zionism in our city.

We have found it appropriate to note the quite particular way the author fixed the date of his writing (which is Tuesday of the [weekly section] Parshas Bechukosai [Leviticus 26:3–27:34], 5658–1898). At the beginning of the letter, he only wrote the year, which is 1898, and after his signature, Szlojme Bromberg wrote the words: “Częstochowa, Tuesday of the parsha and to the detail [sum; number] ‘And all thy estimations shall be according to the shekel of the sanctuary’ [Leviticus 27:25]” and the [Hebrew] letters marked with dots equal [in gematria] the aforementioned date.

To our great sorrow, we found no other documents about the activities of the “Mevakshei Zion” [Seekers of Zion] association or the Zionist public figure Szlojme Bromberg, whose privilege it was to correspond with Dr. Herzl.

However, we are also able to publish a second letter by the same author (in German), in which it is not stated to whom it was written. However, we assume that Mr. Bromberg attached a German translation as well to his Hebrew letter[1]. We also publish a print of this note, which is marked with the number 1027.

The city elders – who are still with us in Israel – remember that on ulica Ogrodowa stood a house belonging to Mr. Lajchter, where a man named M. Feigenblatt lived, but they know nothing of Bromberg himself or the Zionist association mentioned in his letter.

The Central Zionist Archives in Jerusalem also has a letter that was sent by the renowned public figure Mojsze Mokraujer (who immigrated to Israel and died there) that was written on 24th June 1896 to the Zionist Congress' office in Basel regarding the shekels[2] sold and a list of the contributors.

From the same source ( i.e. the Central Zionist Archives in Jerusalem), we have also received a copy of a letter by the renowned Zionist public figure Mr. Natan Gerichter z”l, which was written on 4th Tevet 5670 [16th December 1909] (received at the Central Zionist Bureau on 21st December 1909 and listed under the number 8296). The letter is signed by him and by the secretary Mr. Jakob Kaplanski, on behalf of the Zionist council in Częstochowa. In it, they inform the Zionist General Council in Köln that the local shekel buyers, who numbered 65, joined the Zionist union in the neighbouring Będzin and chose Mr. Berisz Freger as their delegate for the ninth Zionist congress. We publish the print of this letter below.

It should be mentioned that the said Reb Berisz Freger was one of the most important Gerer Chassidim[3] in Będzin and sat at the “table” of the Gerer Rebbes[4] and, despite this, he had the courage (in those days!) to openly join the Zionist movement and create souls for it even from amongst the extremist Chassidic circles.

(The published documents bear testimony to what Częstochowa was for the Zionist movement from its beginning until the destruction of the city by the troops of Hitler, may his name be obliterated!).










The Book Committee hereby expresses its deep gratitude to the management of the Central Zionist Archives in Jerusalem for having put at its disposal the documents, the prints of which are published in our book and [which] prove that already, during the life of the creator of the Zionist movement, Dr. Benjamin Ze'ev Herzl z”l – in 5658–1898 – there were, in Częstochowa, Zionist public figures, active in the Zionist movement.

The Committee also expresses its satisfaction that by this it was also given the opportunity to commemorate, in the Memorial Book for the Community of Częstochowa, the names of the contemporaneous Zionist public figures Szlojme Bromberg, Mojsze Mokraujer (who emigrated to Israel and died there), Natan Gerichter and Jakob Kaplanski z”l.


Jewish Częstochowa's Response to the British Mandate's Approval of the Land of Israel

We publish below the proclamation, in Hebrew and Yiddish[5], “To Our Jewish brothers in Częstochowa” regarding the collection of funds for the “Relief Fund”, that was arranged by the committees of the Zionist Organization and “HaMizrachi” union in Częstochowa (which was published on the eve of Shavuos 5680 (1920).


To Our Jewish brothers in Częstochowa!

The long–awaited hour has arrived! The rejected and exiled people, who have no counterpart in world history with their tribulations and suffering, the people who have already wandered for two thousand years without a home and a resting place, will now be given back their ancient homeland, the holy Land of Israel.

Our generation is given a privilege not had for thousands of years, but the great fortune that has found us lays upon us great obligations that we must fulfill in order to realise our home in the land of Israel. By a decision of the World Zionist Organization, in order to commence the practical building work in the land of Israel, 25 million pounds sterling (close to 20 billion marks) is required. This is indeed a large sum and we must, with all force and vigour, with all our energy, approach this exalted cause [and] dedicate ourselves completely to it.

To this purpose, a temporary relief fund committee has been established in Częstochowa whose task is to collect contributions donated for the building of our land.

The members of the committee are:

Józef Szymon Koblenz Izrail Mendel Zilberberg Mojsze Rozencwajg
Szmul Goldsztajn Mojsze Mokraujer Szaja Windman
Mojsze Zandsztajn Jechiel Hamburger Mojsze Stroz
Anczel Warszawski Hersz Wajselfisz Perec Tenenbaum
Chaim Majtlis Abram Chenoch Finkelsztajn Wolf Icek
Natan Gerichter Jakob Majer Grinfeld Luzor Plocker
Mojsze Halter Gerszon Freger Jakob Leslau


The week after Shavuot has been designated as a relief week. Respected persons will go around to the rest of our brothers to collect their donations for the building of our land. Also, anyone wishing to donate, may bring his contribution to “Mizrachi”, Ogrodowa 14, or to the Union of Zionists, Dojazdowa 13, any day between 6 and 8 p.m.

We are convinced that, in this important historical moment for which we have already been waiting two thousand years, every Jew will give much more than he can, for this great holy cause.

The gabayim of the [different] prayer–houses are [hereby] requested to bring to the committee the lists of contributions of money and goods made when ascending to the Torah.


The Zionist Organization Committee in Częstochowa   The “Mizrachi” Organization Committee Częstochowa

Shavuos Eve, 5680 [1920]

From the 21 members of the organisation committee for the said action, alive today in Israel are, thanks God, Mr. Jakob Leslau, Chairman of the Book Committee and Manager of the “Hapoel Ha'Mizrachi” Bank in Tel–Aviv and Mr. Mojsze Rozencwajg.

(We have taken this proclamation from Mr. J. Leslau's private archive in order to publish it in our book).

Translator's footnotes:

  1. This is not the same letter mentioned above which was sent to Herzl. Return
  2. The Zionist shekel was a membership fee paid by adherents to the movement. Return
  3. Ger is a Chassidic dynasty based in Góra Kalwaria, some 16 miles southeast of Warsaw. Return
  4. This is a very great honor and a distinct mark of deference; the “table” is when the Rebbe takes his Shabbes or holiday meal together with his public and only the most important people sit with him while everyone else stands. Before the Holocaust, Gerer Chassidim were estimated to number in excess of 100,000, making it one of the largest and most influential Chassidic groups in Poland. Return
  5. Although some small differences exist in the wording between the Hebrew and Yiddish texts, the gist is the same. I have therefore brought here one amalgamated version, comprised of both. Return

[Pages 175-184]

On the First Steps
of the Zionist Movement in Our City

Excerpts From the Press

In order to provide some concept of the first steps of the Zionist Movement in our city, we publish here several segments from articles printed in “Ha'Tzfira” [The Siren] in 5677 (1917), regarding Zionist activity in the city in those days.

Additionally, we also publish a list of the city's residents who, at that time, contributed to the fund for the settlement of the Land of Israel, who prayed in diverse synagogues and at the “shtieblech” [Chassidic prayer–houses].

This constitutes further proof that the Zionist ideal had, by then, already infiltrated different circles and strata and had sprouted deep roots amongst the Jewish population in our city.


On Zionist Activity in Częstochowa

From the report read at the general assembly, held some weeks ago by the Częstochowa Zionist Union, we see that this union, which was founded eight months ago, has now two hundred members. The number of those buying shekels is over three hundred. In these eight months, 742 rubles have been collected for the “National Fund”. The income for the local Zionist Organisation reached 667 rubles and its expenses were 695 rubles, including 168 rubles for the needs of the library and the reading room.

The library houses 700 volumes in Yiddish, 280 volumes in Hebrew and 180 volumes in other languages as well. The number of readers reaches up to eighty.

In the five Hebrew language study–groups, there are now 145 students.

The Zionists in this city are now engaged in the foundation of a Jewish high school as well. The general assembly decided to establish a commission for Zionistic propaganda, to establish a “Daughters of Zion” union, to hold debate–evenings on Hebrew literature and science, to open two tea–rooms for the local Jewish poor [and] also to establish, through the Zionist Council, a special “Relief Committee” which will engage in easing the material situation of poor Jewish residents.

Many young men and women have given a hand to the Zionist council to aid it in all these works.

Ha'Tzfira” #4 (dated 23/03/1917)


A Great Popular Assembly for the Acknowledgement of our National Rights in Poland and in the Land of Israel

During chol hamoed Pesach [weekdays of the Passover Festival], a great popular assembly was held in Częstochowa in which about six hundred people participated. Messrs. M. Mokraujer, A. Ickowicz, Ch. L. Librowicz, Sz. Horowicz, J. Gancwajg and J. Windman gave speeches. At the conclusion, Mr. Zandsztajn proposed two resolutions regarding the national rights of Jews in Poland and the future of [the people of] Israel in its ancestral land. Both resolutions were unanimously approved by all those gathered with great enthusiasm.

Ha'Tzfira” #8 (dated 19/04/1917)


The “Ha'Mizrachi” Union in Częstochowa

In Częstochowa, too, a “Mizrachi” union was founded by Mr. I. L. Szczarański. Many important persons joined the union, including the local head of court, the Rabbi [and] prodigy Reb Nachum Asz. At the opening assembly, more than one hundred shekels were sold and [enough] money was collected to purchase one dunam [1000 m2; one–tenth of a hectare] in the Land of Israel as well. A committee was chosen, comprising Reb Józef Chaim Koblenz, Reb Sz. Goldsztajn, Reb A.H. Finkelsztajn, Reb I. Plocker, Reb I. M. Grinfeld, Reb G. Turner and Reb Ch. Weksler.

Ha'Tzfira” #16 (dated 14/06/1917)


Shekel Days in Częstochowa

On the week of parshas Korach [Numbers 16:1–18:32; usually read in June or July], “shekel days” were held here. Besides the proclamations issued by the Municipal Council to our city's residents regarding the value of the shekel, a large popular assembly was held at the “Harmonia” hall as well. Excellent speeches were given by Messrs. N. Gerichter, M. Mokraujer, Messer, the “Mizrachi” Windman, Ickowicz and Zandsztajn. Those gathered unanimously accepted the resolution that was agreed upon at the shekel buyers' assembly in Warsaw.

This great assembly was concluded by singing the “Hatikvah” [Zionistic hymn, later to become the Israeli National Anthem].

HaTzfira” #15 [should say #19] (dated 07/05/1917)


Dr Yehoshua Gottlieb in Częstochowa

Dr Yehoshua Gottlieb has, in the past few days, given two important speeches here, which made a great impression on the multitude of listeners, who filled the hall each time.

Ha'Tzfira” #19 (dated 07/05/1917)


The Election of Seven Delegates to the Zionist Council

On the first day of chol hamoed Pesach, a general assembly of the shekel buyers was held at the “Harmonia” hall in our city, regarding the election of delegates for the coming Zionist Council. At the start of the assembly, the Chairman Mr. Mokraujer announced that our city could choose seven delegates. Mr. Zandsztajn, a member of the Central Council, delivered a short report on the activities of the Central Council in Zionist issues, Hebrew politics and culture and explained the importance of the coming Council. A few members of “Tzeirei Zion” [Youth of Zion] criticised the Central Council's attitude towards Yiddish in the schools. One criticised the Council for no longer taking an interest in the “Scouting” Movement. Messrs. Horowicz and Zandsztajn responded to these critics' words. Following debates, elections were held and, as delegates for the Council, these gentlemen were chosen: [Messrs.] Koblenz, Mokraujer, Gerichter, Finkelsztajn, Zandsztajn, Ickowicz and Szajewicz.

Ha'Tzfira” #32 (dated 10/17/1917)


Preparations for the Elections for the Community Management

On the second day of chol hamoed Pesach, a public assembly was called by the Municipal Zionist Council regarding the elections for the management of the community. The assembly was opened with a short speech by Mr. Gerichter, in which he explained that the goal of this assembly is to unite the scattered forces and to choose a national committee, which will be engaged energetically with these elections' affairs. Mr. Zandsztajn lectured on the new regulations concerning community arrangements and their value for the organisation of the communities in Poland and pointed out the main fault in the matter – that they regard us only as a “general religious” [group] when in reality we are a Nation with national needs like all live nations and he explained the situation in our city, that in the beginning, they wished to divide our residents too into two curiae [Lat. groupings of the citizenry] but the nationalists succeeded in averting this danger and here there will only be one curia. Mr. Librowicz delivered a historical overview of the development of the kehilla in Poland. Mr. Aronowicz expounded the workers' point of view, that the workers' attitude towards the new kehilla was positive because it was engaged not only in religious matters, but in national ones as well. Messrs. D. and Sz. Horowicz also spoke. The assembly decided not to elect an “Elections Committee”, but to allow the Zionist Council to call a larger assembly on this subject.

Ha'Tzfira” #33 (from 10/11/1917)


Conference of Jewish Athletes

During two days, a conference of the “Scouts” in Poland was held in our city. Mr. Z. Wajcman from Warsaw gave a lecture entitled “The World View of Jewish Scouts” which provoked passionate debates. All the orators, almost all of whom spoke in Polish, share the opinion that the “Scouts” need to be nationalist Jews, but they disagree on the issues of political involvement, the attitude towards religion, culture and other principal matters.

The question as to whether this conference would elect a Central Council to stand at the head of the General Jewish Scouts Organisation in Poland or if, temporarily, just a Central Commission to manage the work until the next conference, provoked lengthy debates. It was decided to appoint a five–member commission to which were chosen Messrs. W. Wajcman and Nartenstein from Warsaw, Mr. Lewi from Łódź, Mr. Szajewicz from Częstochowa and Mr. Ellencwajg from Kielce. It was proposed that the “Scouts” be named “Ha'Shomer Ha'Tzair” [The Young Guard] and that the greeting between two members should be the word “shmor” [Heb. guard, IMP].

Mr. Wajcman delivered the closing address of the assembly in which he called the delegates and the youth to diligent national work and finished his emphatic speech with the acclamation “Chazak Ve'ematz”! [Be strong and of a good courage (Joshua 1:6)] – “Shmor!”, answered all those gathered, very enthusiastically. Mr. Mirowski, from Kraków, gave a short speech in which he announced that he would send regards from the “Scouts” in Poland to those in Galicia and finished his words with the call: “Long live the Hebrew people, long live the Hebrew guard!” – “Shmor!”, again the congregation's response reverberated. And while singing “Hatikvah”, the assembled exited the conference hall.

This conference has laid the foundation for the General Jewish Scouts Organisation in Poland. At the forthcoming General Zionist Council, Mr. Wajcman will give a special lecture about this movement and organisation and, doubtlessly, regiments of “Ha'Shomer Ha'Tzair” will arise everywhere and raise us strong–bodied and brave–spirited Hebrews.

Ha'Tzfira” #33 (dated 10/11/1917)


Ha'Mizrachi's” Contributions to Buying a Dunam of Ground in the Land of Israel

The “Ha'Mizrachi” Union has donated one dunam of ground to commemorate the Union's foundation. The contributors: Reb Anczel Warszawski, Reb Szmul Goldsztajn, Reb A. Finkelsztajn, M. Wajnsztok, J. Sz. Koblenz, I. M. Grinfeld – each one 5 [marks]; M. Sudowicz 4 marks; Reb Nuta Turner, Reb Izrail Plocker – 3 marks each.

Ha'Tzfira” #33 (dated 10/11/1917)


Opening Ceremony of the Hebrew High School

Last Sunday, the opening ceremony for the Hebrew High School was celebrated here. The celebration was held at the Main Synagogue, with the attendance of a large crowd of men and women, the latter – in the women's section.

The local Chief Rabbi, Rabbi Nachum Asz, gave an important Hebrew speech on the subject of “Torah and Derech Eretz [common decency]”. Following the Rabbi, the Inspector of Public Schools, Herr Mikuła, spoke on behalf of the civil German government. The Zionist Mokraujer and the High School's Director, Dr Berysz, also spoke. The cantor sang various melodies. The celebration made a very great impression on all the townspeople.

Ha'Tzfira” #34 (dated 10/18/1917)


The Second Assembly Regarding Preparations for the Community Council Elections

Last Motzei Shabbes [the evening immediately following Shabbes, i.e., Saturday night], the second assembly of the Zionist Council, regarding elections to the management of our Jewish community, was held. Mr. Mokraujer opened the assembly and the floor was given to Mr. Zandsztajn, who lectured on the state of this issue in our city. After various debates, a committee of thirty persons was chosen to manage the elections in our city. Among the members of the committee are the leaders of the Zionists.

Ha'Tzfira” #35 (dated 10/25/1917)


Rabbi Y.L. Zlotnik's visit in Częstochowa

These forthcoming days, the Rabbi [and] prodigy, Reb Y.L. Zlotnik, head of court at Gąbin, will deliver a lecture on “Our Task in This Hour”, which was arranged by “HaMizrachi”.

HaTzfira” #35 (from 10/25/1917)


The General Assembly of “Tzeirei Zion

On Cheshvan 12th [October 28th], the first General Assembly of the “Tzeirei Zion” Union, which was founded not long ago in our city, was held on the Zionist Union's premises.

Mr. Dawid Kon opened the assembly with a short speech and suggested nominating Mr. Izaak Mordka Finkelsztajn as chairman of the conference. Mr. Finkelsztajn thanked the assembled for the honour they had given him and invited the members Abram Niemiec and Michał Ajdelman to the Presidential Board and member Szlojme Fiszman as Secretary.

Member Izrail Gancwajch was given the floor. He lectured on the Zionist movement in general and in particular about the attitude of youth towards it.

Member Luzor Plocker read a report, from which it is seen that the Union already has around seventy members, has held two lectures for its members and has sent a special delegate to the Zionist Council.

Afterwards, Member Plocker read the regulations, which were approved unanimously after heated debates and then they went on to members' suggestions.

Member Gancwajch demanded that members, who know the Hebrew language, be nominated to the Council of Members to manage the Union's activities in its spirit.

Member Messer spoke about democracy in Zionism and ended with a plea to the members to work together for the Zionist cause.

Member Plocker spoke about Zionism in the past century and its present status, on the changes Zionism went through in favour of working in the present, on the Zionist ideal coming close to the masses and, at the end, he noted the spirit of democracy that has permeated Zionism lately and voiced his opinion that one the main activities of the “Tzeirei Zion” Union must be learning the Hebrew and Yiddish languages and their literature [and to] strengthen and propagate the Zionist cause through idealisation of Zionism and Nationalism amongst youth, in general, and among the Union's members in particular.

A few members were opposed to Member Plocker's plan. Member Wierzbicki noted that he considers Yiddish a “jargon”.

Member Gancwajch recommended protesting against Member Plocker, who wished to turn our Union into a new type “proletariat”.

Member Markowicz voiced his opinion in favour of the Hebrew language as the teaching language.

At the end, Member Plocker responded to the debaters and they proceeded to the elections. To the Committee were chosen the Members Luzor Plocker, Jakob Turner, Zelig Rapoport, Izaak Mordka Finkelsztajn, Michał Ajdelman, Abram Niemiec, Abram Wierzbicki, Abram Szczekacz [and] Izrail Gancwajch. As deputies, Members Henoch Lewenhof, Chaim Jakob Messer and Szlojme Fiszman were chosen. The Supervising Commission will be members Jonatan Krakowski, Mojsze Rozencwajg and Henoch Laks.

Ha'Tzfira” #41 (dated 12/06/1917)


On the Hebrew High School

The Jewish High School, which opened here at the beginning of the scholastic year, for adolescent boys and girls in two special buildings, is developing in a very desirable manner. For the time being, [two sets of] four preparatory classes and [two sets of] three elementary classes have been opened and there are also parallel preparatory classes and grades. The number of male and female pupils already reaches 360, the number of teachers is twenty and of those, for Hebrew studies – five. The majority of the students are sons of Orthodox Jews and those in the fourth grade have already studied the Talmud and have good knowledge, especially of Rashi[1] on the Pentateuch, with all the midrashim [ancient commentaries] that he quotes. The school is fitted out with all the most appropriate learning equipment and also already has a wealthy library of different languages. This school has quite a good future in our city, as long as its directors and teachers, with the honourable Director Dr Berysz at the head, pay proper attention to the pupils' parents' valid demands, the majority of whom, as mentioned, are Orthodox Jews and their children were and are being educated in their homes in the spirit of Jewish tradition.

Ha'Tzfira” #43 (dated 20/12/1917)


Zionist Activities

– The Zionist idea is increasingly securing adherents in all social strata of our people; “Ha'Mizrachi” has rented a large complex and is proceeding towards fruitful work. It has founded the “ Tzeirei Ha'Mizrachi” Union, which has established Talmud and Judaism lessons and a Hebrew library. The “Tzeirei Zion” organisation was founded and a new community council will soon be elected and attempts are made that proponents of all the Zionist tendencies be admitted to this council, so that it will serve as a “central committee” for all the work in the city.

– Last week, “Ha'Mizrachi” organised two lectures by Mr. I. Nisenbaum from Warsaw on “Zionism and Orthodoxy” and “The People and the Land”. On both evenings, the hall was full of listeners, who paid special attention to the orator's words, and “Ha'Mizrachi” acquired many sympathisers.


County Zionist Conference

– In the forthcoming days, a conference of Zionists from the county cities will be held here.

Ha'Tzfira” #43 (dated 20/12/1917)


On the Collection of Funds, in Częstochowa, for the Settlement of the Land of Israel

In “HaTzfira”, dated 31st December 1917, a general list was published of the funds raised, in different cities with Częstochowa among them, for the settlement of the Land of Israel.

We have found it necessary to list the names of the prayer–houses in our city, and they are:

The “Maggid's” synagogue; Czortków Chassidim; “Agudas Achim” [Union of Brothers]; “Ohel Yaakov” [Tent of Jacob]; Krumlov Chassidim; “Kruk's” synagogue; The New Synagogue; Aleksander Chassidim; “Machzikei HaDas” [Upholders of Religion]; “Radomsker shtiebel” [prayer–house of the Radomsko (in Łódź) Chassidim]; the Pilica Chassidim's synagogue and others.

This list proves how much the Zionist ideal had been propagated among our city's Jews that at prayer–houses of the Chassidim, such as Czortków, Radomsko, Aleksander, Pilica and even “Machzikei HaDas”, it was possible to collect funds for the settlement of the Land of Israel, which was unfeasible in most Jewish towns in Poland.


Częstochowa's Participation in an Action for “Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael” in 5677 (1917)

In “Ha'Tzfira” #19 from 15th Tamuz [5th July] 5677, the proceedings for “Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael” between 13th Elul 5676 [11th September 1916] and 1st Nisan 5677 [24th March1917] are published as follows [n German marks]:

For Herzl's Forest M90
From the “Blue Box” M4.16
For war victims M 272.66
For “diverse donations” M 103.40
Total: M 470.22


In “Ha'Tzfira” #38 from 30th Cheshvan 5678 (15/11/1917), the proceedings for “Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael” between 1st Nisan 5677 [24th March 1917] and 1st Tishrei 5678 [17th September 1917] are published as follows [n German marks]:

For the redemption of the land M303
Vouchers and telegrams M32
War victims M311.21
Herzl's forest M31.70
From the Blue Box M58.27
Diverse donations M204.96
Total: M941.14


Original footnote:

  1. Segments from the newspapers (from Y. Leslau's archive) that were gathered and copied verbatim by Ezriel Ben–Moshe. Return

Translator's footnote:

  1. Rashi is an acronym for Rabbi Shlomo Yitzchaki, a medieval French rabbi who wrote the most widely spread commentary on the Pentateuch, the Talmud and many other books. Return


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