Pokój (in German: Carlsruhe) is a small village between Namysłów and Opole. We know that an organized Jewish community existed in Carlsruhe in 1842, having 96 members and maintaining a synagogue and cemetery. In 1861 there were 128 Jews in Carslruhe. Like in other cities,
at the turn of the 20th century, the number of Jews in Carlsruhe declined. In 1933 only 33 Jews lived in this village.
During the Kristallnacht in 1938 the Nazi troops set fire on
the synagogue and plundered Jewish houses and shops. This situtation forced the remaining Jews to leave their shtetl.
Square at the corner of Sienkiewicza Str. and 1 Maja Str.- site of the destroyed synagogue (photo: Gary Schmidt)
The Jewish cemetery in Pokoj is on Kolejowa Street. Close to the entrance there is a monument with information that the cemetery was founded in 1780. At present there are approximately 30 matzevot, with traces of polichromy and inscriptions written in German and Hebrew.
Jewish cemetery in Pokoj (photo: Gary Schmidt)
Our correspondent described the localization of this place in following words: "From the post office proceed past the Protestant Church along ul. 1 Maja for approximately 600m. Immediately after crossing the disused railway tracks, turn left into ul. Reja which is a dirt road. Proceed along this dirt road for 200m and turn left again into another dirt road. Continue for 50m to find the Jewish cemetery on the right before coming to an old farm house". The cemetery is surrounded by a picket fence and the gate is not locked.
Gary Schmidt from Australia is looking for any information concerning his Jewish roots in Pokoj - Carlsruhe. His great great grandfather Alexander Epstein lived there in 1898 and was a minor hero of the Franco-Prussian War of 1870-71. Please write to email@example.com
Tombstones in the Jewish cemetery of Pokoj (photo: Małgorzata Płoszaj)