Karczew Jewish Cemetery
Jews began to settle in Karczew at the end of the 18th century. In 1921, 836 Jews lived in the town (25.6% of the entire population), most of whom were deported in January 1941 to the Warsaw Ghetto and were murdered a year later in Treblinka.
The cemetery is located about 500 m north-west of the town centre, on a sandy hill at Otwocka Street, on a plot of land with an approximate area of 1.86 hectares. The date of its establishment is unknown, though it was likely established at the end of the 18th century or at the beginning of the 19th century. Initially, the cemetery covered a rectangular plot of land measuring 78 x 58 m. During World War II, the Germans carried out executions at the cemetery. The bodies of people who died or were killed in the Ghetto and in a forced labour camp were buried there. In 1948, the bodies of about 200 people who were murdered in 1942 in the Marpe sanatorium, were exhumed and buried in the cemetery. The destruction of the cemetery began during the war and continued through the following decades. Most of the tombstones were removed and demolished. The cemetery became an illegal landfill and a sand mine. In the 1980’s, during the construction of the pumping station, one of the sides of the hill was damaged, which caused the displacement of graves.
In 2002, thanks to the cooperation of the Jewish Community in Warsaw, the authorities of Karczew, the Polish Jewish Cemeteries Restoration Project, the United States Commission for the Protection of American Heritage Abroad, and private sponsors, the cemetery was fenced and cleaned up. In the cemetery, there are about 150 tombstones in various conditions. From the side of Otwocka Street, remains of the pre-war wall are visible. Around 2016, the ohel of Awraham Jehoszua Heszel, son of Mordechaj Twerski, a tzaddik in Łojów and Cudnów, who died in 1914, was erected. One serious problem in the cemetery is the dune-characteristics of the land. The owner of the cemetery is the Jewish Community in Warsaw and it is listed in the Register of Immovable Monuments of the Masovian Voivodeship (No. 1377, July 26, 1989).