Copyright for the footage: Gombin Jewish Historical and Genealogical Society
Gombin (or Gąbin) is a small town in central Poland. On the eve of the Holocaust, there were approximately 2,300 Jews living in the town, comprising almost half of its total population. Most of them worked in trade or as artisans. Several charitable organizations were active in the Jewish community, in which almost all the Jewish political parties had branches. In addition, the local Jewish community had public and religious institutions, among them the great 18th century wooden synagogue.
Only about 210 of the town's Jews survived the Holocaust.
In 1937, Sam Rafel, who had immigrated to the United States and had later served as president of the New Jersey and the New York Gombin Societies, visited his hometown and captured its residents on a home camera.
Here you can see a schematic map, based on a map annotated in Yiddish by Ze’ev (Wolf) Mantzyk, and created for the Gombin Yizkor (Memorial) Book. Segments of Sam Rafel’s film have been incorporated into the map.