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Yad Vashem This Month in Holocaust History
January, 1943, Deportation of Jews from Ghetto One in Grodno, Poland

January 1943

Deportation of Jews from Ghetto One in Grodno, Poland

The German army occupied Grodno on June 23, 1941. In November 1941, shortly after Grodno was annexed to the Bialystok district, the city's Jews were transferred to two ghettos about 2 km. apart from each other. The first ghetto (Ghetto One) was established in the city's ancient central section, in the area of the fortress, around the synagogue compound (Shulhoif). Some 15,000 Jews were crammed into an area less than half a square kilometer, which was surrounded by a 2-meter-high fence. The second ghetto (Ghetto Two) was created in the Slobodka suburb, behind the railway tracks, in a part of the city that was broader and more open, with fewer houses. Approximately 10,000 Jews were incarcerated in this ghetto.

The deportations of January 1943 were part of the liquidation of the ghetto, an operation that lasted approximately 3 and a half months. The Germans began to empty Ghetto One after clearing out the smaller ghettos in the Bialystok district and Ghetto Two in Grodno. The clearing out of the ghetto began in the end of November 1942 with deportations to the Kielbasin camp, continuing with the mass deportations of January and February 1943 to Auschwitz and Treblinka, and was concluded with the transfer of the remaining prisoners to the Bialystok Ghetto in March 1943.

See here for more information about Grodno.

Yad Vashem Photo Archives, 1366/190