1946 July 4, KIELCE POGROM (Southern Poland)
Claimed 42 Jewish lives. Kielce had a history of Jewish settlement (depending on expulsion orders) of over 500 years. Prior to World War II, there were over 25,000 Jews living there. After the war approximately 200 survivors returned. The riots broke out after a nine year old boy told the head of the local militia that the Jews had held him captive for two days in a basement at 7 Planty Street. He also related that other Christian children had been murdered there. The commander surrounded the house and confiscated their weapons. In return, they were promised protection. During the ensuing pogrom, forty-two people were murdered and dozens more injured. The Kielce pogrom served as a warning to Holocaust survivors not to try to return to their towns and gave an additional push for the massive movement to the West. Within three months, 70,000 Jews left the country.