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Pomiechówek chapter from Pinkas Hakehillot Polin
Published by Yad Vashem
Published in Jerusalem
Published in Jerusalem
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This is a translation from: Pinkas Hakehillot Polin:
Encyclopedia of Jewish Communities, Poland, Volume IV, page 344, published by Yad Vashem, Jerusalem
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(District of Warsaw, Region of Warsaw)
Translated by Jerrold Landau
Donated by Aaron Slotnik
Pomiechówek is first mentioned in documents in the year 1254 as a village under the ownership of the priests of Czerwińsk.
During the years 1807-1912, a fortress was erected in nearby Modlin on the orders of Napoleon. One of the fortresses was built in Pomiechówek. We can assume that Jews started to settle in Pomiechówek only at that time. They earned their livelihoods from commerce and trade related to the provision of services to the military that was stationed in Pomiechówek.
When the Soviet Army invaded Poland in 1920, the Polish government accused the local Jews of treason, and deported them all. Most of the Jews returned to their homes after the battles ended.
According to the 1921 census, the population of Pomiechówek was 666, including 202 Jews.
At the outbreak of the Second World War, some of the Jews apparently left Pomiechówek. All who remained were later deported to Plońsk and Nowy Dwór.
In October 1939, Pomiechówek along with its area (the northern areas of the Warsaw region) were included in the Zirk Zichenau region that was annexed to the Third Reich.
From 1941 to January 1945, the local fortress (Third Fort) housed a Gestapo prison, which held political as well as criminal prisoners. The prisoners included Poles, Jews, Russians, and Hungarians.
During the months of July and August, 1941, the Third Fort served as a gathering area for Jews who did not possess Third Reich citizenship certificates. At the beginning of July, approximately 3,000 men, women and children were brought in from the ghettos of Plońsk, Nowy Dwór, Nowe Miasto, Zakroczym, and other villages of the district. (According to a German source, there were 2,605 Jews in Pomiechówek in July 1941). The Germans crowded them all into ten empty, underground, concrete cells. The prisoners did not receive food or even water during the first days. Later, the imprisoned Jews were allotted from 50 to 100 grams of bread daily, as well as water that was brought from the river on their backs. The men stood in line for long hours in order to receive a glass of water. In general, the line was so crowded that it was impossible to leave it. The German guards shot into the crowd on occasion for entertainment, and there were even cases of suicide. The Jews survived in this camp primarily due to the food packages that they received from their relatives in the ghettos of Nowy Dwór, Plońsk, Nowe Miasto, and Zakroczym, as well as the barrels of soup and rations of bread, honey, and other products sent to them by the Judenrats from those towns. The hunger increased day by day despite this assistance, and dysentery and typhus epidemics broke out. During the first ten days of this camp, tens of sick people were taken out daily to be killed on the hill. According to eyewitnesses, between 600 and 800 people were murdered during that time. Melech Hofenblum of Nowy Dwór, who was the commander of the Jewish police of the camp, selected the victims. Hofenblum displayed great cruelty toward the prisoners. He stole their meager property and used his position to enrich himself. According to rumor, Melech was arrested by the Gestapo and taken out to be killed through the efforts of Y. Ramek, the chairman of the Judenrat of Plońsk.
In the evening of August 14, 1941, the Jews of the camp were transported to the border of the Generalegouvernement by wagon, where the German guards told them to cross the border on foot. The next day, 2,004 Jews from the Pomiechówek Camp arrived in Legionowo, across the border. Many had been injured from the events of the previous night. The German guards entertained themselves by forcing the Jews to run though the bonfires that the Polish wagon drivers had lit to burn their dirty straw. On August 16, the majority of the refugees were transferred to the Warsaw Ghetto.
After about 30 years, in 1972, the Polish government erected a monument in memory of the victims who fell at the Third Fort.
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