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Seeking genealogical resources for Milicz (Militsch) SW Poland #poland


Moses Jefferson
 

Hi Genners!

I recently posted a request for help locating a town mentioned in a Poznan census (see here). It turns out to be Milicz (or Militsch in German), in the lower Silesian region. Here’s a brief history concerning its Jewish inhabitants (from sztetl.org.pl).

 
At first, the Jewish population inhabiting Milicz was very small. There were 5–10 Jewish families living in Milicz in the years 1794–1812, that is a total of no more than 50 people. The local Jewish community was established in the early 19th century; a small synagogue was erected in the town in 1820. A cemetery was opened around the same period. The statute of the Jewish community of Milicz dates back to 1860; at the time, the community was the most populous. In 1848, it had 105 members, while in 1864 – as many as 197. The number of Jewish inhabitants of Milicz started to dwindle in 1871, falling from 64 in 1871 to 46 in 1937. The trend was temporarily reversed at the turn of 1925, when as many as 91 Jews lived in the town.
As one can see, the community was indeed a young one with most of it’s inhabitants emigrating from other towns nearby or traders (Militsch was located near a frequent trading route).

However, I’m struggling to find any existing Jewish records from the town. In a book by Bloch Fritz (pub. Breslau 1926), he mentions various records both from the Kahal and civil records which (supposedly) are located at the Gesamtarchiv dear Deutschen Juden zu Berlin. If any of these still survive? Who knows.

I would appreciate to learn if records from this community exist, since I cannot even find vital Jewish records. We’re BM&D perhaps registered elsewhere? We’re they destroyed during the war?
 
Additionally, I learned of the existence of a Jewish Cemetery. I would very much like to know if the cemetery has been photographed or mapped by anyone in the past, given the ongoing international situation which refrains me from travelling there in person.

Best, Moses Jefferson
London, UK


Rodney Eisfelder
 

Moses,
The CAHJP (Central Archives for the History of the Jewish People) in Jerusalem has 37 files from the archives of the Jewish community of Militsch (Milicz). However, as far as I can tell from the inventory, BM&D records are not included. I think there are membership lists included in some of the files.
See: http://cahjp.nli.org.il/search-holdings
and search for Militsch

I hope this helps,
Rodney Eisfelder
Melbourne, Australia


Joan A. Baronberg
 

Hello Moses,
I recently did a biography of a friend whose maiden surname is Militscher. She lived in that area, mainly Breslau, until in 1938 the family escaped from Breslau and made it to British Mandate Palestine. I never found documentation of exact roots of their family before Ostrowo, although I would assume they have some connection with the town from whom they drew their surname. I have further info. on Ostrowo. I would also suggest YIVO in NY. When they escaped, they left behind a grandmother and other relatives. I do not know where they are buried and if cemetery records for them have been found, but I could ask the family.Let me know if any of this has interest for you. Perhaps one other lead would be  Theresienstadt Martyrs Remembrance Association in Givat Chaim, Israel.


Joan A. Baronberg
 


sfalkjd@...
 

You can also consider materials in the archive of the Centrum Judaicum in Berlin.  It contains a large part of the materials collected by the Gesamtarchiv dear Deutschen Juden zu Berlin.  The catalogue of this archive is in the form of a 2-volume book: Quellen zur Geschichte der Juden in den Archiven der neuen Bundesländer: Stiftung "Neue Synagoge Berlin Centrum Judaicum"

(I think I have checked the excellent index for Militsch records, but I do not recall how extensive the materials are for this town.)

All the best,
Stephen Falk
Point Roberts, WA, USA