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4 Execution site(s)
Janina P., born in 1929, evokes: “(…) At the beginning, there were no mass shootings here but there were some Germans who took pleasure in shooting people. There was this SS officer in the neighboring town who didn’t eat his breakfast before he shot or tortured a Jew. He was driving his car around looking for them. There was another soldier living with us. Some soldiers were really nasty. This one was a German from Silesia. He always refused to speak Polish. He was used to riding his horse through the fields.” (Witness N°88, in Siedliszcze, on August 18, 2011)
“Between 1940 and 1944, probably in 1943, 120 people were shot in the Jewish cemetery. There were local Jews as well as some Jews from Czechoslovakia, some Gypsies, several local owners and a few owners from neighboring villages. The victims were brought from the local forced labor camp and from some neighboring villages. The shootings were led mainly by the German gendarmerie.” [Deposition of Michal M., born in 1897, mayor of the village of Siedliszcze, made on March 20,1969, document IPN, GK 175/43]
The first synagogue was built in Siedliszcze, most likely in the 17th century. In 1870, in Siedliszcze, there were not only a synagogue and a house of prayer but also a mikvah and a hospital. In 1921, there were 666 Jews living in Siedliszcze, representing 80% of the entire village’s population. They were still principally traders and artisans, but they ran also some local industries such as an oil factory, watermills and a bakery.
On June 1, 1940, the Nazis created a ghetto in Siedliszcze for the Jewish population. There were about 2.000 Jews from Siedliszcze, Cracow, Lublin and Czechoslovakia in the ghetto.
The first deportation from the ghetto took place on May 18, 1942. That day, about 630 Jews were sent to the Sobibor extermination camp. The liquidation of the ghetto took place in October 1942 when the rest of the ghetto inmates were sent to the Sobibor extermination camp. During the entire Nazi occupation, regular shootings took place at the Jewish cemetery.
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