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The first official documents mentioning a Jewish presence in Lomza date to 1494, though Jews were no doubt present before then. In 1556, the Jewish population was expelled from the town. Although some Jews returned in subsequent decades, they were again expelled in 1598. In the 18th century, Jews were permitted to enter the town to trade, but it was not until the following century that Jews returned to settle in Lomza, where they played a leading role in the town's economy, as factory owners and grain and timber wholesalers. Jews from Lomza were actively involved in the 1863 Polish Uprising against the Russians.  Many individual Jews, as well as the community as a whole, suffered tremendously when that uprising was defeated, 

The Jewish community numbered about 10,000 by the beginning of the 20th century, and supported a yeshiva, a hospital, and several Jewish schools, newspapers and political parties. On the eve of World War II, Jews made up about 55% of the town's population of 20,000. Lomza was in the part of  Poland occupied by the Soviet Red Army after Germany's invasion of Poland in September 1939. In June 1941, Lomza was occupied by the Germans, who imposed a ghetto two months later. From June to September 1941, 3,500 Jews were murdered in the nearby woods. In November 1942, the ghetto was liquidated and the remaining Jews were shipped to a camp in Zambrow, where some were murdered and others were shipped to Auschwitz. During World War II, the town of Lomza was almost totally destroyed. 

There are organizations of former Jewish residents of Lomza in Israel, France, Australia and the U.S.

Compiled from the Encyclopaedia Judaica, Encyclopedia Britannica, and "The History of the Jews of Lomza," from the Lomza Yizkor Book, published in Landsmen.

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