Memorial to the destroyed
Jewish Community of
Dobrzyń nad Wisłą, Poland
Z a c h o r - R e m e m b e r
Holocaust Memorial Sculpture By Dorothy Goldman Preisler
Dobrzyń nad Wisłą (Dobrin in Yiddish) is located on the Wisłą (Vistula) River in the Włocławek Province of Poland. It is a small town located halfway between the cities of Włocławek and Płock in central Poland. The town, founded in 1065, is noted as a regional recreational center and has a population of about 2,500.
The Jewish Community of the town was established in 1765. Jews at one time made up 1/3 of the total population. A grand wooden synagogue once graced the town, but it was destroyed during the Nazi Occupation & World War Two. The Jewish cemetery was also destroyed during this time. The site of the cemetery now lies under the Vistula River, the results of damming of a site upstream for industrial purposes.
There are no Jewish residents of Dobrzyń nad Wisłą today with most current-day residents unaware of the rich Jewish history of the town and also of the decimation of the Jewish population in the Nazi genocide. A travel brochure for the town does mention that there was once a large Jewish population in the town. A short article about Dobrzyń nad Wisłą is included in the "Yizkor Book" for the neighboring city of Włocławek. The article, which tends to be sentimental and brooding, describes the town as a dark, poor, muddy almost hopeless place. This was probably a fairly accurate description of life in Dobrzyń in the 19th century. The 20th century brought improvements and modernization, but life was probably difficult and many left for a better life in the United States and also in Great Britain. Landsmann groups for Dobrzyn nad Wisła are known to have existed in New York City, Chicago and also London, England. There are "Dobriner" landsmann cemetery sections at the Waldheim Cemetery in Chicago and at Bayside, Acacia and Washington Cemeteries in Queens and Brooklyn, New York. A large number of Jewish records from Dobrzyń nad Wisłą survived the war with the earliest records dating to the early 19th century. Various vital records are available through the town hall, the regional state archives, and also through the Mormon Church.
My name is Julian H. Preisler and my maternal grandfather, Henry Mayer Goldman, was born in Dobrzyń in 1900. He was son of Mendel Goldman (of Gostynin) and Roiza Lejba (of Dobrzyn). He was a barber by profession and a business owner. Of the six children born to Mendel & Roiza Goldman, only my grandfather survived the Holocaust. Two other brothers left Poland in the 1920's and early 30's to go to Uruguay (Isaac & wife Sarah) and to New York (Joseph & wife Miriam). The information and photographs contained on this website are a small but heartfelt effort to keep alive a portion of the rich Jewish history of the town of Dobrzyń nad Wislą and the people whose lives were destroyed in the Holocaust. This website is dedicated to my my ancestors from Dobrzyń nad Wisłą whose memory lives on despite the turmoil and terror of history. I would love to hear from others who may have family connections to this town. This website will expand as I gather materials. I hope to create a list of those known Jewish Family Surnames from Dobrzyń nad Wisłą. Please feel free to contact me.
For an excellent article written by Daniel Appleby on the Sons of Dobrin landsmanscahft 1890-1912 in London, England please click HERE. Daniel recently completed a book about the life of his grandfather, an immigrant rabbi and his life in Dobrzyn nad Wisla, Germany and England. For information on how to purchase a copy of "Service & Scandal" please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Please click on the thumbnails for larger photographs
The exterior and interior of the wooden synagogue that once stood in Dobrzyń nad Wisłą
A vintage pre-WWII postcard of Jewish shops on Franciszkanska Street
A vintage pre-WWII village scene
Postcards from Dobrzyń nad Wisłą -1999 & 2007
Town Sign, Historical Marker & Map
Henry & Hedwig Goldman, Henry Goldman, Hedy, Dorothy & Robert Goldman
Joseph & Miriam Goldman --- Isaac & Sarah Goldman
Hebrew Memorial Park: Detroit, Michigan - Photos 1 & 2
Mt Hebron Cemetery: Flushing, Queens, NY - Photo 3
Cementerio Israelita: La Paz, Uruguay - Photo 4
Click HERE to visit the website (in Polish) of the town of Dobrzyń nad Wisłą
Mr. J U L I A N H. P R E I S L E R
Falling Waters, West Virginia
© Julian H. Preisler
updated: March 26, 2014