D.Sz. Kamiński zl
Reb Srul Kaminski was counted among the most prominent Aleksander Chassidim. He was a righteous man, both in his deeds and his morals. All who knew him honoured him for the uprightness of his heart. The love for the Land of Israel nestled deep inside his heart and he implanted it in the hearts of his sons and daughters from the dawn of their childhood.
In 1924, when my brother and I decide to emigrate to the Land of Israel, his heart was filled with joy. When one Chassid who opposed Zionism inquired of him why he had agreed to our emigration, he replied that he, too, yearned to live in the Land of Israel but that, due to his age, he had no chance of achieving this. But, if his sons were there, there was no doubt that, in time, they would enable him to emigrate as well.
Affairs reached such a state, that the Aleksander Rebbe was informed of our plans for emigration. I was summoned to him. Before my journey, a cherished and respected Jew from Częstochowa, Reb Awigdor, asked me in the studyhall as why I was forcing the End [of Days] and not waiting for The Messiah to arrive [first] although he had no doubt that I had faith [and waited] every day for him to come. I answered him that there was no prohibition to await the coming of the Redeemer in the Holy Land and I mentioned to him the words of the Sages:
A person should always reside in the Land of Israel, even in a city that is mostly populated by gentiles, and he should not reside outside the Land of Israel, even in a city that is mostly populated by Jews, [for] anyone who resides in the Land of Israel resembles one who has a God, and anyone who resides outside the Land of Israel resembles one who has no God. [Talmud Bavli, K'tubot, 110b].
He was convinced by my responses and said to me that had he been my age, he would not hesitate, for an instant, to do the same as I.
When I travelled with my father to the Aleksander Rebbe, my father told him what I had said to Reb Awigdor. The Rebbe told my father that, several days earlier, a Jew had come to him to receive his approval [before] departing for America. The Rebbe said to the Jew that in all the lands of the gentiles, the curse of exile crouches upon us and God's glory fills the entire earth. [Thus] there is absolutely no difference between America, Poland or any other country. But, when a Jew comes to me asking whether to ascend to the Land of Israel, added the Rebbe, I never hesitate an instant to agree to it. The Rebbe [then] turned to me, and entreated me not to stray from the path of the Torah and [its] precepts.
My father was ecstatic that the Rebbe had given his approval. My brother and I made Aliyah, as the family's pioneers. Before long, my father and mother and the rest of our family [also] emigrated to the Land [of Israel].
Before my father passed away in 1947, he comforted himself with the fact that he had been privileged to see, with his own eyes, the portents of the approaching Redemption. Thanks to their devotion to the Land of Israel, my parents were saved from the Holocaust.
The Book Committee
[He was] a Częstochower, a vestige of the Polish Jewry's old generation, a Stryków Chassid [and] one of the exceptional characters among simple Jews.
His heart was always acutely aware of anyone in need or suffering. Reb Duwid was one of a rare type with absolute faith, an elevated figure who carried out good deeds [and treated them] as [if they were] his work, who joyfully served God and Man.
As such, he was popular and familiar amongst the common Jews in his hometown of Częstochowa. He also carried on in this same manner after emigrating to the Land of Israel and settling in the Holy City of Jerusalem, where he continued doing good deeds.
For family reasons, he later moved to TelAviv. There too, many became attached to him with admiration and affection and saw in him the Jewish Knight of Justice, one of the anonymous and prolific philanthropists, whose work is done secretly and modestly. He was available to everyone who needed him and was willing to serve any Jewish person, in any season of the year, and at any hour of the day.
Much was told of his hidden good deeds, but he conducted himself humbly and simply, without the slightest loftiness. For him, everything was in Heaven's name.
He did not omit to attend public prayer and he never absented himself from the Third [Shabbes] Meal.
Reb Duwid Majer, son of Reb Abram Granek, passed away on 26th Elul 5706 [22nd September 1946]. He died at the age of 73 and, by his own request, was laid to rest on The Mount of Olives in Jerusalem.
Already in his youngest years, Judl Dancyger joined the Zionist workers movement Poalei Zion in Częstochowa and became one of its most active members. For his revolutionary activism, he was sent by the Tzarist government to Siberia. Upon his return to Częstochowa in 1913, he was called up to serve in the military and participated in the First World War.
After the War, he returned to Częstochowa, where he found his party fully flourishing. With great vigour, he again applied himself to his party's work and actively took part in all its fruitful undertakings, such as the establishment of children's homes, workers' cooperatives, etc.
He was also nominated and elected a representative of Poalei Zion on the Częstochowa City Council.
He realised his true Zionist dream, together with his wife Rywcza, when they arrived as pioneers in Haifa in 1925. There, he toiled very arduously but, with his extraordinary perseverance, he managed to attain status and built himself a beautiful house in the city centre.
In Haifa, too, Judl Dancyger was active as a community identity and was also elected as Chairman of The Association of Czestochowa Jews [in Israel]. Both he and his wife dedicated much time and effort to the newlyarrived Częstochower immigrants, whom they were always prepared to aid. It is not for nothing that Dancyger was crowned with the title The Ambassador of Częstochowa.
But, alas, cruel Death tore him from us in the midst of his selfsacrificing activity for the benefit of his landsleit. In recognition of his dedicated and selfless work, The Association of Czestochowa Jews in Haifa decided to immortalise his memory by naming the Charity Fund after Juda Dancyger zl.
Perec Lasker was born in 1910 in Chmielnik. His parents moved to Częstochowa when he was still a boy. At the Jewish high school in Częstochowa, Perec distinguished himself with his sharpness of mind and was became one of its best pupils.
At home, he received a Zionist upbringing and joined the Ha'Shomer Ha'Tzair movement. However, his ebullient spirit forever sought new ways to realise Zionism and, eventually, he joined the Revisionist Movement. Perec founded a Betar cell in Częstochowa and managed to organise the best of the city's youth within the ranks of his new movement. After some time, Perec moved to Warsaw, where he continued his studies at university and became one of the leaders of Betar. Eventually, he even became Commissioner of Betar.
During the Nazi occupation, Perec Lasker was one of the organisers of the Betar squads in Warsaw. From there, he meandered, until ending up in the HASAG camp in Częstochowa.
Prior to his emigration to Palestine, he was an activist in the Ha'Bricha [The Escape] organisation, which acted to rescue Jews from the Diaspora and to transport them, in various ways, to the homeland.
Following his Aliyah, he temporarily ceased his political activity and continued his studies at the university in Jerusalem. Later, he engaged in pedagogy and worked as a clerk for the Bureau of Commerce and Industry, but without relinquishing his studies. Sadly for all who knew him, he suddenly fell ill and died an untimely death.
Perec was modest and introverted. He was a man of honesty and truth, who remained true to his dreams and devoted to his struggle. He was loved by all and was admired by all those who came into contact with him.
Blessed be his memory.
In his youth, he joined Betar in Poland and, after the War, was among those who lay the foundations of Betar and Ha'Tzohar in the displaced persons camps in Germany. He served as the first General Secretary of the Ha'Tzohar Alliance among the survivors and organised its offices and determined its procedures. Indeed, if this movement conquered for itself the first place in the refugee camps until becoming the largest movement there Dr Zvi Kantor's place is among those to whose merit these achievements should be accredited.
His activity within his movement's framework did not mar his personal relations with his [political] opponents and he aspired for his movement to participate in the Central Committee of the Liberated Jews. It is, therefore, only natural that, once the Revisionists joined this Central Committee, Dr Kantor led their representatives, as the one in charge of the Health Department of the Liberated Jews.
He was endowed with many, excellent traits. He was charismatic, welldressed and handsome, with an engaging, cultured disposition. [He was] placid towards people and willingly responded to those who turned to him. He aided the unfortunate and was meticulously strict regarding order and discipline in his work. Thanks to these attributes and his talents, he completed his studies at quite an older age and emigrated to the Land [of Israel] as a physician. There, too, he continues to treat people he treats their bodies as a doctor and the Hebrew Child in particular. At the same time, he has not abandoned his activity for society and its institutions.
It may be that, in his various activities, he found alleviation and encouragement in his pains and sorrows, for Destiny had been very cruel to him.
Together with his family members, multitudes marched after the coffin of a man and a friend, a comrade and a colleague, of a public figure and a healer of the sick with a silent prayer on their lips: Would that the bones of this victim of Fate now find the peace and repose for which he yearned all his life.
From the Book Committee:
Dr Zvi Kantor was a member of the Sefer Częstochowa Book Committee and he had intended to set forth his memories of Częstochowa and the Holocaust that caused its annihilation. But death snatched him [from us] before his time.
This book [col.352] contains an article of his, in Yiddish, which he wrote while still in Germany, from which emerges his affection for the city of his birth, as well as his productive public activity, which he was unable to extend in this commemorative project Sefer Częstochowa.
The Book Committee
He emigrated to Palestine in 1926 as a pioneer and was a member of the Ha'Chalutz Ha'Mizrachipioneers' group in Rehovot. Due to the harsh climate and the backbreaking work, he fell ill (he was 17 at the time) and, on his doctors' orders, he was forced to leave the country.
He returned to Częstochowa and, ten years later, made Aliyah for the second time and renewed his pioneering work, with full commitment, taking part in the Hebrew Labour Conquest [Movement's] campaigns.
A disaster took place during his work, at which he met his death on 20th Cheshvan 5698 (1938) [sic; 25th October 1937], when he was only thirty years of age.
Izrael Tyberg's tragic death shocked the entire Częstochowa Jewry, who knew and respected him as an active man and a dedicated Zionist.
May his soul be bound in the Bond of Life!
The Book Committee
Jakub Tyberg, the son of [Dawid] Berek Tyberg and Fajga Laja [née Szterling], was born in Częstochowa on Yom Kippur of 5670 (1909). He died on 9th Tevet 5720 (1959) [sic; 9th January 1960] and was buried in Petah Tikva.
He emigrated to Palestine in 1936 and worked in agriculture and construction in Rehovot. In 1938, he answered the call of the [Jewish] Settlement's institutions and enlisted with the Notrim, when the bloody events [viz. the Arab Revolt] were at their worst. With a unit of guards, he was sent to Lod, which was surrounded by Arabs. It was their duty to escort, to TelAviv, the passengers who had arrived on aeroplanes at the Lod airport. Usually, the Notrim would transport the passengers in armoured vehicles, accompanied by a British officer. Most times, the officer would relinquish joining the group, because they would be shot at when they passed through an Arab area.
Jakub Tyberg also worked in Rosh Ha'Ayin, guarding the water plant for Jerusalem. Due to the night time guard duty, he contracted a bronchial infection, which became a chronic illness. A heart attack, which came upon him in this weakened health condition, brought an untimely end to his life, when he was only fifty years old.
He represented the Notrim in national institutions and fought for their rights. He completed his service in 1945 and began working for the Tnuva Company in Petah Tikva. He was among the founders of [the] Neve Oz [neighbourhood] next to Petah Tikva and acted extensively in aid of the first settlers. He was also a board member of the Ha'Poalim Bank in Petah Tikva.
He was extremely devoted to his family and was careful in the observance of the precept to honour one's parents. He left a wife, a son, and a daughter.
The Book Committee
He is the son of Reb Szyja Srebrnik zl, whom the Chassidim called Szyja Błaszker [i.e. of Błaszki]. Reb Szyja was the son of Reb Szlojme Srebrnik zl, who served as Rabbi of Nowy Dwór and, later, of Wieluń.
Reb Szyja had a pleasing voice [and was] a pious and Godfearing man, as befitted a man of sacred origins a descendant of the righteous man, Rabbi Jakób [sic] Szymszon ztzl of Ostropol.
Due to these merits, he was made prayerleader at the house of the Rebbe Reb Pinches Menachem Justman ztzl of Pilica, where he was the cantor on Shabbes, as well as lead singer at the Rebbe's table. Also, during his visits to the Gerer Rebbe, of whom he was a follower, he was honoured with singing Zmires Shabbes [(viz. traditional songs) at the Rebbe's table].
His son, Juda Aryje, who was born in Częstochowa in 1909, was already in childhood gifted with a musical talent and was considered a wunderkind in the world of song and melody.
The liturgy of the prayers, as well as the Chassidic tone and spirit, he had absorbed from his father zl.
Although Srebrnik was engaged in commerce, he also extensively broadened his musical knowledge, with which he graced the young song and music lovers, who gathered at the Lira Association in Częstochowa and, later, at the conservatory in Katowice.
During the days of the Holocaust, Srebrnik was transported to the Auschwitz death camp and, later, to Dachau and only by a miracle did he survive. The wife of his youth, Dina (the daughter of the renowned cantor Reb Izrael Winer zl of Kielce) and his son Szyja hyd perished in the Holocaust.
When he was in the Częstochowa ghetto, he organised a mixed choir, under the auspices of TOZ. While he was being held at Auschwitz, he composed a melody for the prayer Gaze down from heaven and see [old Jewish song], which became like a silent prayer for the tortured Jews in their ordeals.
In 1946, Srebrnik emigrated to Palestine, where he built his home anew. His musical talent as a composer of melodies for Jewish prayers in the traditional style, while incorporating all the novelties of modern music, placed this new immigrant in the first row of composers and conductors of the country's most important choirs. There is practically no glamorous, public, festive ceremony in which our modest Częstochowa landsman Juda Srebrnik does not hold the respected position of the choir's conductor.
Thus, on 1st Nisan 5723 [26th March 1963], we saw him at
What should be particularly noted was the great contribution of his performance in the magnificent album that was released in Elul of 5724 [August 1964] in commemoration of the Chassidic composer Reb Yankel Talmud zl. As is known, this great Chassidic composer did not know how to write or even read music and always rendered his melodies from memory.
Juda Srebrnik, appreciating the importance of Reb Yankel Talmud's tunes and finding them fit to conserve for [future] generations, wrote down the notes [he heard] from his mouth, which were published in [the book] The Composer of the House of Ger and, thus, he greatly aided in the immortalisation of Reb Yankel Talmud's Chassidic music for generations [to come]!
Emigration to the Land of Israel had, from the beginning and onwards, entailed idealism and a readiness for sacrifice.
The very first immigrants were, therefore, great idealists, who desired to assist, with their young strength, to develop the land so that, over time, it would be able to also take in a massAliyah.
The first Częstochowa PoaleiZionist to travel to the Land of Israel was the printer Józef Kaluszynski zl (later Arieli).
In the years 19111921, larger groups had already travelled, among whom were the Finkler brothers, Handelsman, Gerszon Ickowicz, Heber and others.
The First World War interrupted the Aliyah but, in 1919, a new group of Częstochowa pioneers arrived, who gleefully took upon themselves all the pains of immigration.
In the 1920's, bourgeois elements also began to come to the Land of Israel. Among them were entire Częstochowa families, such as [that of] Aba Kiwkowicz, Pinkus Wajszenblad, Chaim Herszlikowicz [and] Majorczyk.
Częstochowa Relief Association
The Częstochowers lived in different cities, kibbutzim and settlements, but the majority settled in TelAviv. The compatriots would meet often and, at one such meeting in 1925, the idea emerged of establishing a mutual relief association. Among the founders at that time were Juda Oszer, Gomulinski [and] Godl Frajtag. Rabbi Jszajewicz zl was chosen as the Association's first chairman.
The Częstochowers made efforts to stick together and, as far as possible, to help one another.
In the Histadrut, also, a group from Częstochowa was organised, under the leadership of Godl Frajtag (an assiduous Poalei Zion activist in Częstochowa) and it was called The Frajtag Group.
The Częstochowa Association was also very much involved with the Union of Polish Immigrants [in Israel] and, for many years, our Chairman Dr E. Horowicz was also Chairman of the Union.
Up to the outbreak of the Second World War, the Częstochowa Association carried out its modest work which, even in the prevailing conditions at the time, had major significance.
Following the onset of the War, when the first teary news arrived from Poland, the Union of Polish Immigrants created a special committee under the name The United Council in which the following Częstochowers were active: Dr E. Horowicz, Faitel Szmulewicz zl, Sz. Efraim, Juda Nir (Wajdenfeld) zl, Cohen [Kohn], Z. Szpaltyn, Godl Frajtag, J. Yaskil, A. Gotlib, D. Gruszka and Jakób Lewit.
Sitting: Yaskil, Szpaltyn, Frajtag.
The Jewish Agency sent our landsman Moshe Yishai to Tehran, Persia, to put himself in contact with the Soviet government. He obtained permission for aid to be sent to the Polish Jews in Russia.
Our members managed to find the addresses of eightyfive Częstochowers in the Soviet Union and the Association sent them packages of food and clothing. The members Karp, G. Frajtag, J. Yaskil, Abram Gotlib, Aron Mass, the Cohen brothers and their father Chaim, [all] donated higher sums [than the Association had stipulated] to this cause.
In March 1946, the Association held a massmeeting of Częstochowa landsleit in TelAviv. Speeches were given by Dr Hirszberg, formerly rabbi of the German Synagogue, and by Dr Józef Kruk. They called for support of the fundraiser that was being conducted to aid the surviving Częstochowa brethren. Last to speak was a volunteer from the Jewish Brigade, Ezriel Jakubowicz (today E. benMoshe), who had visited Częstochowa in December 1945.
Aid from Australia
At the start of the 1950's, material aid also came, for our landsleit in Israel, from the Częstochowers in Australia. In order to distribute the packages, with various foodstuffs, that had been received, the countrywide committee appointed an intercity secretariat comprising the following members: Abram Gotlib and Zvi Lewkowicz (Lavi) from TelAviv, Juda Dancyger (zl) from Haifa and Fajwel Zuzowski from Jerusalem. As General Secretary, Abram Gotlib was selected, the duties of which he carries out to this day.
The support received, as well as the local collections, made it possible to widen the scope of the Charity Fund's activity. With our modest means and possibilities, we granted our members loans for constructive purposes.
The Association organises the annual meetings of mourning, in commemoration of the Częstochowa martyrs. We have also put up a memorial slab at the Chamber of the Holocaust on Mount Zion, in Jerusalem. Each year, in the week after Sukkos, when the Great Deportation of the Częstochowa Jews took place, memorial gatherings are held in TelAviv, Jerusalem, and Haifa.
Dr Horowicz, Gerichter, Wajszenblad, Gomulinski, Rajchman, Horonczyk, Faktor, Mrs Wajszenblad, Mrs Gomulinski [and] Mrs Rajchman
In February 1960, with the aid of the Częstochowa landsleit in Toronto, Canada, a polyclinic for Histadrut's HMO was built, in which a plaque was erected in commemoration of the Częstochowa martyrs. Our compatriots, Mr Richter and his wife, came from Toronto for the inauguration of the polyclinic.
Nowadays, the work of The Association of Częstochowa Jews in TelAviv is carried out by members Dr Józef Kruk Honorary Chairman, Dr Elyahu Horowicz Chairman, Abram Gotlib Secretary, Szmul Efraim Treasurer, Frania Grinberg, Chaim Zvi (Herszlikowicz), Mojsze Yaski, and Noach Kurland.
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