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Izraelicka Łaźnia Ludowa i pomnik Pierwszego Transportu do KL Auschwitz Tarnów

Jewish Bathhouse and the Monument of the 1st Transport of Prisoners to KL Auschwitz in Tarnów

Pomnik Pierwszego Transportu w Tarnowie na tle budynku.
Z tyłu betonowo-kamienna ściana przypominająca pasiak. Miejsce na znicze z inskrypcjami, wokół kwiaty i znicze.

pl. Więźniów KL Auschwitz, 33-100 Tarnów Tourist region: Tarnów i okolice

The mikvah, or Jewish ritual bath, is located on Bożnice Street, today's Prisoners of Auschwitz Con-centration Camp Square. to Jews it used to be as important as the synagogue and was used for ritual cleansing of the body and utensils with rainwater or spring water.

The magnificent building of the mikvah – the Israeli People's Bathhouse – was erected in 1902 in an eclectic style combining Moorish, Art Nouveau, Gothic and Renaissance elements. The representative, multifunctional bathhouse was probably designed by the municipal builder Szczęsny Zaremba, and the construction was carried out by local builders Franciszek Hackbeil and Michał Mikoś. The building is of a rectangular plan, has a storey and an annex, and is covered with a hipped roof. The entrances are decorated with elaborate risalits topped with pinnacles. The corners of the building and the main risalit are marked by full-height quadrilateral turrets. The façades are decorated by rows of bipartite and tripartite windows, some of them framed by arches, as well as two-coloured horizontal stripes made of bricks and window arches with openwork stuccowork. In the past it housed changing rooms, a room with pools of hot and cold water, showers, a steam bath, a mikvah and rooms with baths. During the occupation, the Nazis held Polish and Jewish political prisoners in the mikvah. After 1947, the building housed a municipal bath, from 1968 to 1986 a hospital ward for natural medicine and rehabilitation, and since 1994 a shopping centre. Today, the first floor houses the Stara Łaźnia restaurant, which serves Jewish cuisine. After the war, a monument was erected next to the bathhouse to commemorate the day of 14 June 1940, when the first transport of 753 men to Auschwitz-Birkenau departed. These prisoners began the tragic history of the Auschwitz camp; less than 200 survived, and all the Jews were murdered. The monument is made of stone and concrete, reminiscent of the Oświęcim stripes, and designed by  architect Otto Schier from Tarnów. A metal frieze with figures symbolises the march of prisoners to the camp. Fragments of the cobblestones on which the prisoners walked were incorporated into the whole. Anniversary celebrations are held at the monument, and the place is visited by groups of tourists from Israel.

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