Wierzbica Jewish Cemetery
Despite a ban on Jewish settlement which was in force until 1862, 31 Jews lived in Wierzbica in 1817, and 121 in 1827. In the 1921 census, 81 inhabitants (6.5% of the entire population) declared themselves as of the “Mosaic faith.” During World War II, the Germans established a ghetto in Wierzbica, in which, about 500 people, from the town and from other surrounding areas including Przytyk, were confined. In the fall of 1942, most of them were deported to Kozienice or Szydłowiec and then exterminated in Treblinka. The cemetery is located about 1.5 km north-east of the town centre, on the west side of Wierzbicka Street, near the intersection with Błędowska Street and covers the geodetic plot No. 168/2 shaped like a trapezoid with an area of 0.14 hectares. There is no information about the cemetery’s establishment date. According to Adam Penkala, the cemetery was probably established in 1831 due to the cholera epidemic. The facility was not marked on the 1839 plan. It is known that the cemetery was fenced with a wall.
The cemetery was probably devastated during World War II and continued to degrade in the following decades. In the list of synagogues and cemeteries prepared by the Office for Religious Affairs in 1952, there was an annotation regarding the cemetery in Wierzbica: “Stone destroyed in 80%.” An area of 500 square metres was also recorded, which corresponds with the total area of plots 168/1 and 168/2. In the 1960’s or 1970’s, the cemetery was covered with trees. In 1983, the area was littered. The boundaries of the cemetery are partially visible owing to the remains of the quarried stone wall. There are no tombstones. On the side where the cemetery borders Wierzbicka Street, there is a symbolic red brick gate, built prior to 1983. The area is overgrown with wild vegetation (grass, shrubs, deciduous trees). The cemetery is listed in the Municipal and Provincial Register of Monuments.