The Time My Great Grandfather was Accused of Murdering a Child
So my Great Grandfather is in the garden with his Maid pulling up potatoes. Cause that’s what you did back in the early 1900’s in Poland. You just spent all day pulling potatoes out of the ground.
Suddenly they hear a commotion coming from the Jewish Cemetery a block away. My Great Grandfather walks over to see that all the Gypsies are gathered there. The Gypsies have been camping out in town for the last couple of days. They’re gathered around a 14 year old Gypsy girl whose been beaten to death.
When my Great Grandfather walks over, the mother of the girl points to him and says, “That Jew did it!”
This is a very long standing tradition.
Back then, whenever a crime was committed, one that you might even be involved in, you just look around, find your closest Jew and go, “He did it.”
And by it she was referring to what was known at the time as Blood Libel. Blood Libel was the antisemitic belief that certain Jews would steal Christian children, take their blood, and use it to make Matzo for Passover.
Which is crazy. If you know anything about Matzo it’s that it’s delicious, you don’t need to put anything it.
So the Gypsy woman yells that Jew did it and then all the Gypsies start chasing my Great Grandfather. Now he’s running with his hat and his side curls (they’re called payot) and they’re behind him and he’s hoping he can get enough wind under his payot for him to fly away but no such luck and so he runs around the corner and finally he makes it to the Police Station and he goes inside and he tells the police what happened, that he walked over to the Cemetery and those Gypsies randomly accused him of stealing their child’s blood for some absurd, made up ritual, and the police...being the Polish police...charge him with murder.
So now he’s in Jail waiting trial. It’s not looking good. He has 9 children and his wife died last year from an Enema. Back then an Enema could kill you. Business was very bad for a while but then he started exporting clover to Germany and things were looking up. Life was hard but it was getting better. But now he was fucked. Cause rumors were already starting to spread.
One Polish girl- obviously put up to it by some people in the town- said she saw my Great Grandfather drawing blood from the child. So they put him in a Line Up with Six other Hassidic Jews and asked her to point to who she saw.
This is where their plan backfired.
She looked at all six identical looking Jews for nearly 45 minutes and then finally pointed to the wrong one.
So if you’re ever wondering why Hassidic Jews looks the same, it’s to get out of situations like these.
My Great Grandfather got off. But no one would do business with him anymore.
It was time to get the fuck out of Poland.
So he went to the Ger Rebbe and asked him what to do. A couple years earlier he had been thinking about leaving to America and he asked the Ger Rebbe then and the Ger Rebbe told him not to leave. That in America, his grandchildren and great grandchildren would become goyim. Non-Jews...
Now the Ger Rebbe had changed his Mind.
“It’s time for you get the fuck out of Poland,” he said.
My Great Grandfather packed everything he would need for the journey. His children would be coming in the next month. He stepped outside with his trunk and looked back one last time at the house he was born in.
He would never see this house again.
And then he left.
As he walking in the direction of the train station, he remembered again what The Rebbe had said the first time he visited him. “Do not to go America. Your children and grandchildren will become goyim...”
90 years later...I’m in the kitchen, watching a Pepperoni Pizza cook in the oven.