The Jewish cemetery in Nowa Sól was established in the second half of the 19th century – in 1860, 1870 or 1877, depending on the source. It occupied the area of 1,280 m2, and was located on a square plot at the junction of Angerstrasse (now Wyspiańskiego Street) and Mathildenstrasse (now Wandy Street).

The last funeral before the war most likely took place in 1935. In 1943, the cemetery was owned by the Association of Jews in Germany, which in 1944 was forced to sell the cemetery to the town. The transaction was concluded on 22 September 1944[1.1].

After the end of World War II, at least three burials took place at the cemetery. In the 1960s, the cemetery was surrounded with a fence made of prefabricated concrete elements, adjacent to neighbouring buildings on two sides. The technical condition of the fence was assessed as average. The area of the cemetery was neglected, overgrown with trees and thicket, and 90% of tombstones were devastated.

On 18 February 1963, the Presidium of the Municipal National Council in Nowa Sól submitted an application to close and liquidate several cemeteries, including “the Jewish cemetery with an area of 1,000 square metres.” The report drawn up on 10 April 1967 included the following information: “The subject of the meeting of the Presidium held on 3 April 1967 was the maintenance of municipal cemeteries and funeral homes. The Presidium of the Municipal National Council has made the following recommendation in this regard: the Department of Municipal and Housing Administration will make efforts to obtain permits to liquidate the cemeteries as soon as possible, according to the established burial data in the cemeteries: – on the left side of Wandy Street (Jewish cemetery) due to the lack of land. (...) After obtaining appropriate permits for the liquidation of the cemeteries, the Roads and Greenery Service Department will notify the interested parties about the possibility of exhuming corpses.” The final decision to liquidate the cemetery was made in 1969 (PPRN decision, no. UZ-e/26/69). On 17 January 1970, the remains of Isaac Goldberg were exhumed and transferred to the Jewish cemetery in Żary. No other bodies were exhumed. The area of the cemetery was levelled by community service workers and converted into a park.

Alicja Skowrońska, the chairwoman of the Żary branch of the Social and Cultural Society of Jews in Poland and a member of the Municipal Council of Nowa Sól, and Sabina Andraczyk, a resident of Israel, sought to commemorate the cemetery for a long time. Their efforts were publicised in the press by Marek Grzelka from Tygodnik Krąg and Mateusz Pojnar from Gazeta Wyborcza.

In January 2017, a commemorative boulder with a plaque was unveiled at the edge of the cemetery. It features the following inscription: “This is the location of the Jewish cemetery open in the years 1860–1970. To this day, this piece of land hides the remains of people buried here. May this stone be a silent witness to the life and death of the Jewish community of Nowa Sól.” The monument was funded by the Municipal Council of Nowa Sól.

 

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Footnotes
  • [1.1] Połomski F., “Zawłaszczenie i sprzedaż cmentarzy żydowskich w latach II wojny światowej na Śląsku. Ze studiów nad prawem własności w III Rzeszy,” [in] Studia nad faszyzmem i zbrodniami hitlerowskimi, vol. 11, ed. K. Jonca, Wrocław 1987, p. 319.