The Torah scroll found in a wooden shack in the Lodz Ghetto. .
(photo credit: SHEM OLAM)
A 150-year-old Torah scroll was found inside a shack in the Polish city of Lodz on a street that was part of the Jewish ghetto during the Holocaust.
The scroll was transferred to the Shem Olam Holocaust Institute, established in 1996 in Kfar Haroeh by Rabbi Avraham Krieger, which then brought it to Israel.
The Lodz municipality was planning to demolish a number of old wooden shacks that had housed Jews. The scroll was found hidden inside a wall. Other Jewish artifacts were also found in the building and among its debris.
The Torah scroll was hidden by Jews almost 80 years ago in the ghetto and used on Shabbat and Jewish holidays.
“This is a historical finding and a rare piece of life from the ghetto that survived until today,” Krieger said. “The Poles continue to suppress our history. These lone wooden shacks left on the Lodz Ghetto streets were going to be demolished and the only evidence left in Poland of what happened in the Holocaust was going to be erased.”
Lodz was Poland’s second largest city and a major industrial center. The ghetto there was established in April 1940 and became the second-largest ghetto created by the Nazis. About 164,000 Jews were held there before it was finally liquidated toward the end of 1944.