Plock Old Jewish Cemetery
The old Jewish cemetery in Płock is located about 900 metres north-east of the Old Market Square. It was established around 1570 outside the city walls. The land was purchased by the kehilla (organized Jewish community) on November 26, 1568, with the consent of King Zygmunt August. The establishment of the cemetery was met with in resistance from the townspeople, as evidenced by the interventions of Zygmunt August in 1570 and Stefan Batory in 1576.
The cemetery was in use until 1850. During World War II, the Germans devastated the cemetery. Some tombstones were used for construction purposes to harden roads and build stairs, including the ones next to the Evangelical church in Górki and next to the church of St. John and the Higher Theological Seminary, where the SS was located. The cemetery fell into further disrepair in the post-war years. There was a stonemason’s workshop next to the preserved funeral house. In the period of the Polish People’s Republic, the city authorities designated the area for development. A boarding house of the Władysław Jagiełło High School was built in the area, and a part of the terrain was transformed into a park. Almost all above-ground traces of the cemetery have disappeared. On the side which borders Padlewski Street, a fragment of the cemetery wall has survived. In 2018, the students of the Entrepreneurship School Complex in Płock painted a mural commemorating the cemetery.
The first records of Jews in Płock date to 1237. At that time, there was a Jewish district in the city. In 1921, 7,352 Jews lived in Płock. In 1941, the Germans deported most of them to the camp in Działdowo, then to the ghettos in Drzewica, Kielce, Przysucha, Tomaszów Mazowiecki, and other places. In 1942, they murdered them in Treblinka. After the war, there was the Jewish Committee in Płock, in which 333 people were registered in 1946.