A Monument on the Ruins
of an Annihilated Jewish Community
(Ostrowiec Świętokrzyski, Poland)

50°56' / 21°24'

Translation of
Sefer Ostrovtsah: le-zikaron ule-'edut

Editor: Gershon Silberberg, Meir Shimon Geshuri

Tel Aviv 1971



Project Coordinator

Avi Borenstein


Our sincere appreciation to Helen Rosenstein Wolf & Genia Hollander
for typing up the English text to facilitate its addition to this project.

This is a translation of: Sefer Ostrovtsah: le-zikaron ule-'edut (Ostrowiec; a monument on the ruins of an annihilated Jewish community),
Editors: Gershon Silberberg, Meir Shimon Geshuri, Society of Ostrovtser Jews in Israel,
with the cooperation of the Ostrovtser Soc. in NY and Toronto, Tel Aviv 1971 (H, Y, E 800 pages)

Link to the other Ostrowiec Yizkor Book printed in 1949 in Buenos Aires can be seen here.

Note: The two original Ostrowiec books can be seen online at the NY Public Library site: Ostrowiec

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Translated by Yocheved Klausner

Introduction Yehezkel Ereli (Erlich) 13
Foreword Yehezkel Erieli 15
History of the Town and the Jewish Community
On the Rivers of Ostroweic M. S. Geshuri 17
On the Rivers of Ostroweic M. S. Geshuri 37
Rabbis and Admorim of Ostrowiec M. Sh. Geshuri 59
HaRav and Admor HaGaon R' Meir Yechiel Halevi Halstock zt”l
Rabbi Yechiel Meir Halevi Halstock zt”l HaRav Yitzhak Yedidya Frenkel 69
The poor people's ADMOR, standing firm against the powerful Yehoshua Altman 71
Hassidim telling stories about their rabbi Yehuda Leib Zuker 72
Lover of people Yoske Apter 74
The man who has become a legend Yakov Hocherman 79
Meetings with the rabbi A. Halevi 80
Din Tora [trial in a religious court] at the Ostrowiec Gaon Yehoshua Altman 81
Something about the Ostrowiec method in studying HaRav Isser Frenkel 83
The greatness of the Admor Yechezkel Ereli (Ehrlich) 85
The Ostrowiec rabbi (poem) A. N. Stentzel 86
The Ostrowiec rabbi and his environment Leizer Kuperman 87
The Ostrovtser Y. Opatoshu 93
The Ostrowiec Rabbi Foresees the Holocaust Dr. Chaim Shashkes 95
Ostrowiecer Gaon [Genius] Sh. Pietruszka 97
Good words from the rabbi Ben-Zion Ratler 98
The great holy man from Ostrowiec Hillel Zeitlin 100
A forty-year struggle against the body S. Palmoni 102
The last minutes of the Ostrowiec Gaon I. Bronstein 103
Bibliography on the Ostrowiec Gaon M. S. Geshuri 106
The Rav ADMOR Rabbi Yechezkel'e, May God avenge his blood
The Last of the Ostrowiec Rabbis Chaim S. Palmon 108
Rabbi Yechezkel during the days of fury and the Shoah A.R. 110
The last hours before he was executed Moshe Friedensohn 112
A lament for the Rav Rabbi Yechezkel S. Almoni 113
The Martyrdom of the Last Ostrovtser Rebi Aron Tsaytlin 116
The death of a martyr, the last ADMOR of Ostrowiec   118
There Once was a Jewish Town…
Ostrowiec, the city where I grew up Simcha Mintzberg 121
Ostrowiec in the Eyes of a Visitor Yosef Wishnograd 127
Two worlds in One City Yakov Bildreich 128
My Ostrowiec Yehoshua Altman 130
A town between two rivers Eliezer Kuperman 133
The Jewish Youth Entertain Themselves Yechiel Magid-Rozenberg z”l 141
The town of my childhood Max Grossman 143
The Shul–hoyf – The Center of Jewish Life Efrayim Vartman 145
A vanished world of the past Miriam Wattman-Rosenberg 146
Streets and People in Ostrovtse Shmuel Shtraytman 148
From my childhood years Aharon Urbass 149
A story Yehoshua Altman 152
“Sabbath and Holyday Jews”
Deep-rooted Jews with an original way-of-life Pinchas Soroka 155
An incident caused by Birkat Hamazon I. Birnzweig 156
Sabbath at my home Feigush Weintraub-Fertzig 158
My father on Sabbath Aharon Urbass 158
A mute prayer Chaim Goldsatz 159
The Days of Awe in Town Mendl Hartshteyn 163
Shabes and Yontiv in Ostrovtse Yekhiel Magid–Rozenberg 165
Kol Nidrei Chaim Goldsatz 169
The “Jewish people” Take a Torah Scroll into the Synagogue Yechiel Magid-Rozenberg 170
My grandmother's prayer Chaim Goldsatz 174
Figures and Types
R'Meir Ehrlich, may God avenge his blood Arie Liebman 175
In honor of the community activist Moshe Lederman, may his memory be a blessing Yechezkel Arieli 176
R'Chaim Aharon Silberberg Arie Zhavner 177
R'Aizik Mendel Shochet (slaughterer) Pinchas Soroka 178
R. Mordechai Shimonovitz Pinchas Soroka 179
R. Mordechai Shimonovitz Rabbi Dov Zaid of Zvhil (Berl Zeviller) 179
Esther the humble widow Moshe Rosenberg 180
HaRav R' Yechiel Blankman, may HaShem avenge his blood HaRav D. Goldschmidt 181
Rav Avrehme'le Brieftreger (postman) Yehuda Leib Zucker 182
R' Avraham Mordechai Alter Naftali Alter 183
R'Yehoshua Riba   183
R' Leibush Pesach and Chaya Fuchs Shprintza Matel Blumenfeld 184
Leon Beigelman Helena Vasko 185
R' Chaim Yakov Yosef Nagel z”l   186
Henech Halpern I. Birnzweig 186
My girlfriends Chana Hurwitz 186
Yiddish Section
Figures and Types
Yochanan's Shtiebel (Hassidic synagogue) Yehoshua Altman 187
R' Leybush Halshtok of Blessed Memory Iser Boymfeld 188
Ruben and Khay'ele Shpilman of Blessed Memory Yehude and Mordkhe Rozenberg 189
R'Israel Rosenberg Yehuda and Mordechai Rosenberg 190
The Rise and Destruction of a Family Moshe Zaltzman 192
Ostrowiec Medical Practitioners Meir Blankman 196
Folk Types of Ostrowiec of Old Isaac Bainerman 198
Ostrowiec types Meir Blankman 203
Nothing will be lost Chaim Goldsatz 205
The Ostrowiec water-carriers Meir Blankman 207
The Ostrowiec insane Meir Blankman 209
Mother, I can never forget you! (poem) Yehoshua Urbass 212
Heders and Yeshivas
The Ostrowiec melamdim [teachers] Meir Blankman 214
A Town of Bote–medroshim and Khadorim Yekhiel Magid–Rosenberg 218
The Yeshiva of the Moralists “Bet Yosef” Yechiel Rozenberg 220
Ostrowiec Becoming Modern
The Development of Modern School Systems Iser Boymfeld 224
Charitable Jewish Institutions in Town Paltiel Brikman 227
Chevra Kadisha [burial society] is asking a price Ch. Fleischman 229
[Political] Parties and Societies in the City Eliezer Kuperman 230
The socialist movement Aizik Beinerman 232
New Winds Are Blowing Isser Boymfeld 233
Ostrowiec Becomes Modern M. Piltzmacher 235
Jewish Labor Life Eber Beinerman 237
Social movements in town M. Piltzmacher 239
The “Hechalutz” Wins over the Youth Moshe Rosenberg 245
From the activities of the youth in our city A. Halevi 246
“The Zionist Youth” Arouse the Jews to Aliyah Moshe Blajberg 248
Hashomer Hale'umi Feivel Kerschenblatt 252
The Revisionist Zionist Movement in Ostrowiec I. Birnzweig 252
Mizrachi and Tze'irei HaMizrachi as reflected in the press   253
Agudat Yisrael as reflected in the press   257
Holocaust and Destruction
Eli Ostrowiec (poem - lament) Yakov Baharir 258
My life and experiences in the Nazi hell Shlomo Horwitz 261
The beginning Yehoshua Urbass 271
Chelunia! (poem Aizik Beinerman 276
The liquidation of the Ostrowiec ghetto Leibush Millstein 277
The Zabchinski brothers Friedman 294
The Szczebrzeszyn rabbi dies as a martyr I. Bernstein 295
Burying the Torah Scrolls During the Days of Terror Chana Wittenberg-Gutholz 296
A mother's eulogy Bina Weintraub-Shapira 297
The destruction of Ostrowiec (poem) Yehoshua Urbass 298
Our Attic Machtche Zilberberg-Zhabner 305
Hazkarat Neshamo [Memorial Service, lit. remembering the souls] Aizik Beinerman 309
My Uncle Reb Chaim Aaron Silberberg Leibel Zabner 311
Photographs of the Ostrowiec Ghetto Simcha and Itche Meir Birnzweig 313
The Tragic Death of Reb Mordechai Shimonovitch, May His Blood Be Avenged Leibel Zhabner 315
My Mother Goes to the Marketplace Leibel [Arie] Zabner 318
Ostrowiec my home Mordechai Rosenberg 320
The Night of Slaughter April 28 Mokhtshe Zshabner–Zilberberg 321
The Night of the Execution Yechiel Magid–Rosenberg 322
The Gruesome Bartholomew Night Yisroel Aaron Friedental 323
The Anniversary of My Father's Death Yechiel Magid-Rosenberg, of blessed memory 326
The Lipsker Tzadik Aharon Urbass and Yehuda Rosenberg 327
Memorial to the soul of Moshe Lederman z”l Yechezkel Arieli 328
Reb Moshe Yaakov Toppel Brings Victims to Kever Yisrael [Jewish Burial] Mordechai Zev Toppel 329
The Youth Open a Children's Home in the Ghetto Yechezkel Mandel 330
I remember Isser Gerber 335
The Savers Yehuda Rosenberg 340
The Bunker Rokhel Guthaltz-Kempinski 342
Ostrowiec Youth Fight in the Warsaw Ghetto   345
Ostrowiec in the Days of the Holocaust Bella Schribner 346
Ostrowiec, I shall never forget you Malka Appelboim 351
Only ruins have remained M.Grossman 354
Polish Murderers A. Almoni 355
Ostrowiec during the Holocaust years Nechemia Warman 356
The young mother from Badzhichov camp Aizik Beinerman 363
Gutholz's heroic death in the labor camp M Bromberg 365
The Nazi roll-call (poem) Yosef Rosenberg z”l 366
The Maker of Aryan Papers Berish Brikman 368
In the forced-labor camp in Germany as Christians Helena Pirkawska 369
A Letter to My Sister Shammai Kudlowicz 370
Among Christians in Warsaw Helena Kaletzka 376
Poems and improvisations in the ghetto Amnon Ajzensztadt 388
A prayer (poem) Mordechai Rosenberg 390
Survived the Nazi Hell in a Ditch Yerachmiel Waldman 391
Oh, How bad I feel! (poem) Mordechai Rosenberg 394
The sole survivor from Kinev Shmuel Nudelman 396
Extermination Camps
Ostrovtse Jews Are Transported to a Death–camp Paltiel Geshri–Brikman 401
I “Was” in Treblinka Miriam Gutholz–Feldman 403
“We have not lost our hope” (the Jewish anthem) Aizik Beinerman 412
I Survived the Nazi hell Azriel Urbass 415
Out of the gas chamber and down from the gallows Menashe Unger 419
At “Kever Avot” (parents' grave) in Majdanek Meir Blankman 422
A Visit to Auschwitz Meir Blankman 425
Graves Israel Gurfinkel 430
Ostrovtse Partisans Wolf Fajnsztadt 433
A Group of Partisans from Ostrowiec   435
Murders by the Polish partisans Shlomo Zweigman 436
Reports from the labor camp The Testimonies Committee 440
Official Documents Concerning the Extermination in Ostrovtse   443
One Righteous in Sodom - the Christian Eva Shaminska Ariela Reuveni 446
Ostrowiec without Jews
The First Memorial Day in Ostrowiec Y. Baharier 449
At the Gravesite of the Jewish Ostrowiec Partisans   452
The Terrible Disappointment of the “Liberated” Jews of Ostrovtse   455
Ostrovtse without Jews Dr. Chaim Shoshkes 456
A Visit to a Destroyed Home Amnon Ajzensztadt 459
About the Violated Jewish Cemeteries in Poland Mayer Blankman 469
My consolation Mordechai Rosenberg 472
A Report of Nazi Crimes in Ostrowiec (Poland)   474
The Hunt for the Criminals   478
Rievele Spillman's violin Dr. Yakov Schatzkin 480
Imagination Eliezer Kuperman 481
A stone Israel Gurfinkel 482
The Surviving Remnant - Dispersed and Scattered
Activity of the Organization of Former Ostrowiec Residents Yechezkel Ereli 487
The Organization of Former Ostrowiec Residents in Israel Yechezkel Ereli 495
A stormy meeting of the Organization   500
Remember and never forget! Yechezkel Ereli 502
The destroyer felled our town - massacred without mercy Yechezkel Ereli 504
The blood of our best sons have sanctified the soil of this land Yechezkel Ereli 506
Ostrowiecers who fell in Israel's wars and sanctified its soil with their blood   508
Ostrowiecer who died in Israel
The late R' David Topel Shoshana Topel-Yisraeli 511
Chana Bogyeski z”l S. Choresh 513
Yafa Rosenberg z”l Moshe Rosenberg 513
Genia Levi z”l - a noble and fighting figure Shaul Goldman 514
Dear sister A. H. 516
Yechiel Meir Levi z”l Halevi 517
Binyamin Meir Eisenman z”l Tzipora 518
In memory of a fiend, Shmuel Nafrastik Yechezkel Ereli 519
Attorney Rabbi Israel Aharon Friedental z”l Abraham Friedental 520
Simcha Mordechai Zabner z”l Arie Zhabner 522
Friendship through the Chain of Generations   522
Ostrowiecer in Toronto Dr. Chaim Shoshkes 523
A friendship of three generations   524
The Committee for Ostrowiec Lansleit A. Vilenski 525
Ostrowiecers in Toronto Put Up a Memorial for the Martyrs [Shaya Zweigman, Albert Beinerman] 526
The Solemn Unveiling of the Ostrowiec Tombstone Eber Beinerman 526
A Symbolic Grave for the Ostrowiec Martyrs Shaye Zweigman 528
A Worthy Memory for Us and for Our Martyrs Eber Beinerman 529
Ostrowiecer in Toronto helping with the Yizkor Book   532
The Ostrowiec Synagogue in Toronto   533
New York
The lonely Landsman Eli Rasberg 542
A public call to the New York Landsleit   543
R'Zev-Wolf Weiss z”l Eliezer Kuperman 544
We May Not Forget the Murderers and the Jewish Helpers A. Boymfeld 547
My Hometown Ostrovtse! A. Boymfeld 549
We Do Not Pardon the Jewish Collaborators Eber Beynerman 553
Ostrowiecer in Argentina Erect a Memorial to Martyrs I. Branden 554
English Section
Initial pages 4
An Idea Realized Yehezkel Ereli (Erlich) 9
A Town Between Two Rivers M. Sh. Geshuri 13
Surviving Child of Hitler's Regime Eva (Cukier) Singer 46
The Annihilation of a Jewish Community Leibush Milstein 47
Ostrowiec Societies in NY & Chicago   99
A Tribute to Our Martyrs Allan Grossman 105
Ostrovtser Shul in Toronto   111


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