The first traces of Jewish settlement in Szydłów come from the 14th-15th century. However, only in the 16th century a gradual increase of Jewish population could be observed. It is interesting that the oldest Polish register of Jewish settlements from 1507 does not mention Szydłów .[1.1] The first information concerning the size of Jewish settlement in that locality comes from 1564. Fourteen Jewish households were mentioned in that year, and in 1569 – sixteen of them .[1.2] In 1576 Jews from Szydłów paid 20 zl of poll tax .In the period from 1615 to 1616 and in 1629 – there were 37 Jewish houses reported and 25 Jewish cottagers .[1.3] As a consequence of wars held in the middle of the 17th century there were only 17 Jewish houses in 1660 .[1.4]In 1674 the poll tax was paid by 103 Jews from Szydłów .[1.5] In the second half of the 18th century a German, Johann Philip von Carosi, who was visiting Poland, wrote that the town was inhabited mainly by Jews.[1.6] In 1765 the Jewish kehilla had 430 members, 308 of them from Szydłów itself . [1.7] In the 19th and 20th centuries, when Szydłów lost its economic position, the number of Jews gradually decreased. In 1827 there were 1,139 Jews reported in town (approximately 52 % of all residents), in 1857 – 724 (about 37 %), in 1885. – 986 (about 42 %) and in 1921 – 668 (about 29 %) .[1.8] It seems that the interwar period positively influenced the development of that locality, as in September 1939 the Jewish population in Szydłów amounted to 1,500 people . [1.9]

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Footnotes
  • [1.1] M. Horn, Najstarszy rejestr osiedli żydowskich w Polsce z 1507 roku, „Biuletyn Żydowskiego Instytutu Historycznego”, no 93, 1974, pp. 11-15.
  • [1.2] Lustracja województwa sandomierskiego 1564-1565, ed. by W. Ochmański, Wrocław 1963, p. 145.
  • [1.3] Z. Guldon, K. Krzystanek, Ludność żydowska w miastach lewobrzeżnej części województwa sandomierskiego w XVI-XVIII wieku. Studium osadniczo-demograficzne, Kielce 1990, p. 19, 164.
  • [1.4] Lustracja województwa sandomierskiego 1660-1664, cz. 2, wyd. H. Oprawko i K. Schuster, Wrocław 1977, s. 40.
  • [1.5] Z. Guldon, Źródła i metody szacunków liczebności ludności żydowskiej w Polsce w XVI-XVIII wieku, „Kwartalnik Historii Kultury Materialnej”, year 34, 1986, no 2, p. 256.
  • [1.6] J. Ph. Carosi, Reisen durch verschiedene polnische Provinzen, mineralischen und andern Inhalts, vol. 1, Leipzig 1781, p. 88.
  • [1.7] Z. Guldon, K. Krzystanek, Ludność żydowska w miastach lewobrzeżnej części województwa sandomierskiego w XVI-XVIII wieku. Studium, p. 208.
  • [1.8] B. Wasiutyński, Ludność żydowska w Polsce w wiekach XIX i XX. Studium statystyczne, Warszawa 1930, p. 54; S. Marcinkowski, Miasta Kielecczyzny. Przemiany społeczno-gospodarcze 1815-1869, Warszawa 1980, s. 135; A Penkalla, Szydłów, [source] Żydzi w Polsce. Dzieje i kultura. Leksykon, ed. by J. Tomaszewski and A. Żbikowski, Warszawa 2001, p. 485.
  • [1.9] A. Penkalla, Synagoga i gmina w Szydłowie, ”Biuletyn Żydowskiego Instytutu Historycznego”, 1982, no 1-2/121-122, p. 69.