Kosow Lacki Old Jewish Cemetery
The old Jewish cemetery in Kosów Lacki was established in the second half of the 18th century in the southwestern part of the town, at the intersection of Szkolna Street and Towarowa Street. During World War II, it was destroyed by the Germans, and the tombstones were used to harden the Black Road in Treblinka. In the period of the People’s Republic of Poland, warehouses, scrap dump, and fuel storehouse were established in the cemetery. The exhibit in the Museum in Treblinka includes several fragments of matzevot excavated from the site of the former camp. They most probably came from the Jewish cemeteries in Kosów Lacki.
The first records of Kosów Lacki date to 1417. However, Kosów Lacki did not obtain rights similar to town rights until 1778. Jewish settlement probably began there at the end of the 17th century. At that time, a synagogue and the first cemetery were also established. In 1827, Jews constituted 100% of the town’s population (315 inhabitants). An independent Jewish community was established in the town around that time. In the 19th and 20th centuries, the community continued to develop and numbered over 90% of the population.
In 1921, among 1,362 inhabitants, there were 1,316 Jews. At the end of 1939, the Germans recognized the town as “Judenstadt,” treating it as an open ghetto. Jews from Mława, Wyszków, and Kalisz were also imprisoned there. In the spring of 1941, some streets were fenced, which formed a closed ghetto. Some Jews were forced to work in the Treblinka I camp. The liquidation of the ghetto began on September 22, 1942, and lasted three days. Most of the Jews were transported to the extermination camp in Treblinka II.