Thank You

We would especially like to thank the people who were there and who have helped restore a piece of Zolynia to the world. Over the years, William Katz, Miriam Marder, Mark Orbach and other members of the First Zoliner Society have shared anecdotes and stories about their experiences in Europe and identified people in photographs. William Katz's testimony in particular has been important, providing the most detailed and comprehensive information about the Jews of Zolynia.

We thank the Gmina Zolynia and its Secretary, Mr. Waldemar (Waldek) Natonski, who maintains the official Gmina Zolynia web site ( Over the years, Waldek has shared photographs from the Zolynia archives, several of which are featured in the narrative and in the Image galleries. The Polish-language Gmina Zolynia site is very useful for those who would like more information about Zolynia today, and would like to see many more photographs.

We'd like to thank Naomi Elbinger and for their help with last-minute translations that will greatly improve the upcoming revised version of this site (March 22, 2011).

Some images have come from the Podkarpacka Biblioteka Cyfrowa (digital library), via Michal Marcinek, for which we are grateful.

One piece of information shared by Mr. Natonski was Andrzej Potocki's report about Jews in Zolynia prepared for the "Zoliner Convention" in June 2008. Particularly useful were some names of Zolynia Kehilla officers and details about events in Zolynia during the German occupation and we thank Mr. Potocki for his efforts.

We also thank other researchers who have shared details about their families, particularly Bobbee Apfelbaum Finkel, who shared images of her family. Tomer Brunner's research about his relative, Rebbe Teicher, is also reflected on the page about religious leaders. Dennis Waters and Susana Leistner Bloch have shared research and helped advance knowledge about the Jewish families of Zolynia.

The professional work of translators David Goldman (Yiddish) and Peter Jassem (Polish) helped make non-English documents accessible to users of this site. Polish researcher Pawel Brunon Dorman ( took most of the photographs of Zolynia in the present day used throughout the site.

Also of critical importance to the development of this site has been the generosity of other family researchers and historians in sharing images, stories and details from their own work. Ron Riesenbach graciously encouraged the use of the testimony by his father, Joseph Riesenbach, about his experiences during the war ( Plater Robinson, a researcher of the village of Oleszyce, provided information about the railroad route to Belzec which improves upon other published sources, demonstrating the importance of ongoing research in finding the best possible truth about these events.

Images, reports and data from Yad Vashem and JewishGen also have been extremely useful in compiling this site and in putting in perspective events in and around Zolynia.

Internet and Print Resources

The More Information section lists web sites and books that were particularly helpful in writing the narrative, and which may be of great interest to those who would like further information about the Jewish genealogy, the Jews of Galicia, the Holocaust and other subjects.

Three young women

It was traditional for new immigrants in New York to have a photograph taken for their families back home. Here, three young women from Zolynia are photographed in New York in 1913. The woman on the right is named Deena. The woman in the center is unknown. The woman on the left is Sheindel Jokel, later known as Jennie Yokel Friedel. She followed her older siblings, Esther and Wolf (William) to the United States.

After it became clear after the Second World War that her four brothers and sisters in Zolynia were no longer alive, Jennie never spoke to her childen about them. Jennie's children, seeing her anguish, didn't bring it up.

Now the silence is over. This web site tells the story of what happened to Chaskel, Feige, Tila and Moshe, my grandmother's brothers and sisters, who never met her family in the United States.

Michael A. Miller

Michael A. Miller
New York, USA




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