Czech Torah Scroll
The Rescued Czech Torah in the DPJCC Holocaust Learning Center
When you enter the David Posnack Jewish Community Center’s Holocaust Learning Center, you will see against the window a beautifully housed old Torah scroll. This is a Torah scroll that survived the Holocaust, was rescued and has been given new life as a tribute to the lost synagogues, the lost communities and most importantly, the lost Jews who died tragically in the greatest evil the world has ever seen.
As the Jewish people continues to live, this Torah scroll is a symbol of the eternal covenant between God and the People of Israel. The Jewish People survives as does this scroll.
The Torah in our Holocaust Learning Center was housed in the synagogue in Ivanovice, a city in what is now the Czech Republic. Ivanovice is a small town that dates back to 1591 in the Czech province of Moravia. Eight Jewish families originally lived in this community. Records indicate that there were 20 Jewish households in 1677, and in 1836 there were 351 Jews. By 1890 only 196 Jews remained, and only 77 by the year 1921. Sadly, on March 31, 1942, 44 Jews were deported to the Therezienstadt concentration camp, and of all of the Jewish residents of Ivanovice, only one woman survived the Holocaust.
The Torah in our Holocaust Learning Center was sent by the Jewish community of Ivanovice to the Jewish Museum in Prague and was purchased together with 1563 others by Mr. Ralph Yablon who had them sent to the Westminster Synagogue in London, who set up the Memorial Scrolls Trust to care for the Torah scrolls.
On permanent loan to the DPJCC, the procurement of the Torah by the Memorial Scrolls Trust for permanent display in the Holocaust Learning Center was made possible by a generous donation from Brenda & Andrew Greenman in memory of their parents, Sarah & William Reshefsky.
The Torah in our Center is identified as MST#316
You can find out more about the international project of rescued Czech Torah Scrolls by the Memorial Scrolls Trust at www.memorialscrollstrust.org