Dear Fellow Researchers,
I'm afraid I must correct Ada Holtzman's message referring to the "Old Lodz
Cemetery." What she is actually referring to in her message is the "New Lodz
Cemetery" on Bracka Street.
There were two Jewish cemeteries in Lodz. The "Old Lodz Cemetery" on Wesola
street was established in 1811 and closed to burials in 1892, although a
handful of burials continued to take place through 1922. The cemetery's
tombstones were removed during WWII and the cemetery was later completely
destroyed by post-war development. Fortunately, the Chevra Kadisha records of
this cemetery survive. There is a JRI-Poland project well underway -- the
"Lodz Chevra Kadisha Indexing Project" -- to index the 3,000-plus burials in
the Old Lodz Cemetery. About half of this database is already online in the
searchable JRI-Poland database. For a detailed explanation of this project,
The "New Lodz Cemetery" on Bracka and Zmienna Streets was established in
1892, upon the closure of the "Old Lodz Cemetery." It was to became the
largest Jewish cemetery in Europe. When the Lodz ghetto was established in
1940, the "New Lodz Cemetery" was incorporated into the ghetto area and a
section of it was used for burials of the approximately 43,000 Jews who died
in the ghetto: the "Ghetto Field." In total there were approximately 180,000
burials in the "New Lodz Cemetery," including the "Ghetto Field." This
cemetery and its Beit Tahara are still in existence and continue their
functions to the present day. A JRI-Poland project is in development to index
all the burials in the "New Lodz Cemetery," including the "Ghetto Field."
For anyone wishing further information, I suggest visiting these web pages:
<http://www.shtetlinks.jewishgen.org/Lodz/oldcem.htm> (Old Wesola Street
<http://www.shtetlinks.jewishgen.org/Lodz/newcem.htm> (New Bracka Street
<http://www.shtetlinks.jewishgen.org/Lodz/newcemplan.htm> (Plan of the New
Bracka Street Cemetery)
If you have any questions, please don't hestitate to contact me.
Shirley Rotbein Flaum
An appeal to volunteers
Every time there was a funeral, the name of the deceased was added to
the board of the Purification House, with the surname, name, "Ulica"
(street) number, plot and section and the grave number.
In 1945, upon liberation, the Purification House and the boards still
existed, with the names of the dead who were buried in the "OLD JEWISH
CEMETERY". A Jew rescued the boards and smuggled them to Eretz Israel!
The boards were given by this Jew shortly before he died to Yehuda
Widawski, a Holocaust survivor >from Turek and Lodz, who has dedicated
his life to the cause of Shoah memory.
Widawski donated the lists, 36 in number, each one in the size of 70x70
cm, xeroxed >from the original boards, to the Landsmanschaften of Lodz
The Landsmanshaften than gave me another set of copies >from the copies,
I volunteered to transcribe the names and prepare the database of the
I dedicate the project to the memory of Widawski's beloved wife, Dobrish
(Dorka) Widawski, daughter of Avraham Wassercug z"l of Lodz who died
Tammuz 23, 5760 (July 26th 2000).
About 15,000 - 20,000 names are expected to be found in those authentic
and rare boards. Their main value is derived >from the fact that there
are the authentic burial reference, giving the exact location of the
grave in the premises of the old cemetery. Mr Widawski researched and
advised me that all the entries are >from the 19th century, but I myself
did not yet researched and compared to the cards
database, assembled in more than 20 volumes and which are also held by
the Landsmanschaften of Lodz with more than 100,000 records.
Morris Wirth volunteered to transcribe the names with me and I am very
grateful to him.
The data will be donated to JewishGen OWBR database and published in a
Hopefully also JRI database will be enriched with this rare database.
A study is being conducted now to find out the period of the burials
recorded in those boards.
I shall be very thankful to anyone who will volunteer to help me in this
I shall take care for sending him/her 2-5 boards.
It is my hope this work will contribute to the everlasting
commemoration efforts of the grand Jewish Community of Lodz!
Me and Morris Wirth already transcribed nearly 5000 entries. I give you
here A VERY PARTIAL LIST OF SURNAMES - with the hope people will get the
excitement I felt while first saw this document and will volunteer to
help in copying the names to the database in Excel.
Web Site: http://www.geocities.com/Paris/Rue/4017/