WYSZKOW (Pol. Wyszków), town in Warszawa province, eastern central Poland. The first Jews settled in Wyszkow in the late 18th century. In 1827 the Jewish population numbered 278 (29% of the population). Throughout the 19th century no restrictions were put on Jewish settlement, and in 1857 the Jewish population had reached 1,067 (67%). The wealthier Jews engaged in the timber trade and the brewing of beer; others engaged in tailoring, fishing, carpentry, tanning, haulage, and shopkeeping. In the late 19th century the community was influenced by the ḥasidic groups of *Aleksandrow and Gur (*Gora Kalwaria). In 1897 Wyszkow contained 3,207 Jews (64%). At the beginning of the 20th century a Jewish workers' union was formed, and during the uprisings of 1905 the Jewish youth organized *self-defense. A Jewish library opened in 1909. After the Red Army retreated in 1920, some officers of the Polish army accused the Jews of Wyszkow of treason, almost inciting a pogrom.
Between the two world wars Abraham Cytryn headed the "Bet Yosef" yeshivah, which had 250 students. There was a CYSHO school (see *Education) between 1925 and 1930 and a *Beth Jacob school. Jacob Aryeh Morgensztern, who later led the *Radzyn Ḥasidim, served as rabbi of the community until 1932. He was succeeded by his son, David Shelomo Morgensztern, who was killed in the Holocaust. Economic competition in the 1930s caused an increase in antisemitism. Mordecai *Anielewicz, commander of the Warsaw ghetto uprising, originated from Wyszkow.
At the outbreak of World War II there were about 5,000 Jews in the town. The German army entered Wyszkow on Sept. 11, 1939, and organized anti-Jewish riots in which 65 Jews were shot. A few days later, the entire Jewish population was expelled and forced to move eastward into Soviet-occupied territory. After the Warsaw ghetto uprising, the survivors of the Jewish Fighters' Organization formed a partisan unit named after Mordecai Anielewicz that operated in the forests near Wyszkow. After the war, no Jewish community was reconstituted in Wyszkow.
Słownik geograficzny Królestwa Polskiego. 14 (1895), 147–8; Żydowska Rada Narodowa, Sprawozdanie z działalności tymczasowej żydowskiej Radzie Narodowej … (1921); B. Wasiutyński, Ludność zydowska w Polsce w wiekach XIX i XX (1930), 25; T. Berenstein and A. Rutkowski, in: BŻIH, 38 (1961), 3–38; 39 (1961), 63–87; D. Shtokfish (ed.), Sefer Vishkov (1964).
Source: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2008 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved.