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Jewish families from Sobieslav (Sobeslau), Bohemia, Czech Republic

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This project seeks to collect all of the Jewish families from the town of Sobieslav (Sobeslau) in Bohemia, Czech Republic. In S Bohemia, 11 miles S of Tábor, 23 miles NNE of České Budějovice (Budweis), on the Lužnice River.

Additional material forthcoming, in the meantime this is a placeholder input.

Subject: Former Synagogue and the Jews of Sobeslav From: Date: Mon, 23 Nov 2015 15:43:25 +0100 X-Message-Number: 1

Former Synagogue and the Jews of Sobeslav Memorialized in the Czech Republic

Temple Beth Shalom in Needham, MA, together with Julius Muller of Toledot in Prague, sponsored a ceremony on Sunday, November 15th to commemorate the synagogue and the Jews of Sobeslav in the Czech Republic, who were all deported to the Theresienstadt Concentration camp in November, 1942. The Needham temple has in its possession the Torah scroll that was rescued from the Sobeslav synagogue.

The ceremony was held in Sobeslav in front of the house no.31, Jirsikova Street where the synagogue once stood. Pavel Makovec, son of Noemi Blann, the only surviving members of the former Jewish community, unveiled the plaque. A local historian and head of the Sobeslav gymnasium, Petr Lintner, who has written several articles about the Jewish community, and his colleague, teacher Radim Jindra, who organized the Missing Neighbors project at the gymnasium spoke, as did the mayor. A local choir, Anonymous Voice, sang Jewish songs and a cantor, Michal Forst, recited the memorial prayer, El Male Rachamim. About 50 people attended.

The plaque says: Site of the Synagogue (1874-1942) Here lived the heart of the Sobeslav Jewish community. This community began in the early 16th century and ended when the Nazis deported its last residents to Theresienstadt in November 1942. During the time the synagogue was active, its walls were filled with prayer, song, celebration and learning by men, women and children. May their memories be for a blessing. Memorialized in 2015 by Temple Beth Shalom in Needham, Massachusetts, USA, where a Torah scroll saved from Sobeslav continues to be a source of wisdom and light.

Julius made all the arrangements with the town, oversaw the creation of the bronze plaque in Prague, and created the ceremony. He is the founder of the NGO Toledot in Prague and an active scholar, researcher, and leader of the Jewish community of Prague including the former head of the Reform Jewish community Beit Simcha.

Florence and Jerry Schumacher of Wellesley, Massachusetts, Temple Beth Shalom members, visited Sobeslav during their trip to the Czech Republic in 2013 to discover their ancestors. As they were on the way from Prague to see Czesky Krumlov, a national heritage site, they stopped to see the town from where their temple´s Torah came. They were able to find and visit the site of the former synagogue, with the help of their guide. As they were leaving the site, the residents in the former synagogue, now used as an apartment building, suggested that they would be willing to have a memorial plaque placed on the site to recognize the synagogue. Temple Beth Shalom embraced the suggestion to memorialize the Jewish community from where its torah came. This bronze plaque will bear witness to the lives and the cruel fate of the Jews from Sobeslav, said Florence.

Florence Schumacher Temple Beth Shalom