Opole Lubelskie is a small town in Lublin province, S.E. Poland. A silver merchant named Manasseh is known to have resided in Opole in 1626 and carried on business there. The administration of the Opole community came under the jurisdiction of the Lublin kahal. There were 487 Jews living in Opole in 1765. The community increased substantially during the 19th century, numbering 1,799 in 1856 (nearly twice the number of gentiles), and 3,323 in 1897 (60.1% of the total). The Jewish population numbered 3,766 in 1921 (66.7%).
[Encyclopaedia Judaica (Germany)]
About 4,000 Jews were living in Opole Lubelskie on the eve of World War II. The number was more than doubled when about 2,500 Jews from Pulawy and over 2,000 Jews from Vienna were deported there in December 1939 and February 1941, respectively. In May 1942, an additional few hundred Jews from nearby smaller places and Slovakia were brought to the town.
Jews were deported from Opole to death camps on four occasions. On March 31, 1942, 1,950 Jews were sent to Belzec; another 3,000 were sent to Belzec in November. On May 12, 1942, 2,000 Jews from Opole Lubelskie ghetto and Naleczow labor camp were sent to Sobibor; another group of 2,000 Jews was sent to Sobibor on May 25.
The community was not revived after the war.
T. Brustin-Bernstein, in: Bleter far Geshikhte, 3:1–2 (1950), 51–78, passim; Yad Vashem Archives.
Source: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2008 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved;
Email from Holocaust researcher Aaron Biterman, (April 14, 2019).