Kanczuga Shtetl and Lancut

memorable visit exploring jewish traces

Kanczuga, Siedleczka, Ulm family Museum & Lancut

My clients from the USA who intended to visit Kanczuga, a small town in the south-west Poland, planned their trip in advance. Richard, his brother Allan and their wives Cindy and Tina had only one day on account of their trip to Paris. They contacted me a couple of months prior to their visit so I asked them to provide me with any possible information concerning their ancestors living in Kanczuga before WWII.

They sent me scanned birth certificates, ship manifests, some pictures, letters, and personal notes of their grandparents. They were all written in Polish and German.

After analyzing all the documents, we managed to establish more information from their past. We managed to identify the address of the house which belonged to their family.

I also got in touch with a young gentleman, Patryk Czerwony, who was born in Kanczuga but emigrated with his parents to the USA, and currently lives in New York. Patrick is very active in commemorating Jewish past in his hometown, Kanczuga.

Through to Patryk we got in touch with his colleague Marzena who still lives in Kanczuga. Marzena offered her services as a tour guide.

Sometime before our guests’ arrival we already were in possession of series of very useful documents and archival abstracts based on which they were able to recreate the missing branch of the family tree.

We have also gathered some interesting facts about Kanczuga’s past and lives of its Jewish citizens.

Once we had “all the ducks in a row”, and ready to greet our guests at the airport in Krakow we learned that the flight was cancelled!

Naturally we were asked to reschedule everything to the next day. It was the middle of high season for our firm, but luckily for all we managed pulled it off!

We greeted and picked our clients the next day and after 1,5 drive we arrived in Kanczuga.

Marzena met us at the town’s square from where we took a stroll through the picturesque, narrow streets of a once Jewish shtetl.

Both brothers, Richard and Allan were hoping to buy their once grandfather’s house alas, to their disappointment, it had already been sold. The notion of spending summer holidays in Kanczuga was laid to rest right there and then.

On our way back we managed to visit the Ulm family museum who were executed for hiding Jews during the Nazi regime in Poland.

After lunch in Lancut we still had time to see its beautifully restored synagogue and meet the charismatic curator Miroslaw Kedzior.  Come evening the whole gang was on the plane on their way back to Paris.

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