General information: First Jewish presence: unknown; peak Jewish population: 131 in 1880; Jewish population in 1933: 40
Summary: The Jewish community of Aschbach, founded in the early 18th century, established a cemetery in 1720; a synagogue, on Bachstrasse, in 1748; a schoolroom and teacher’s apartment in 1831; an elementary school in 1890 (closed in 1923); and a mikveh. In 1763, after local Jews purchased the synagogue at Bachstrasse, they erected in its place a new house of worship. The community’s teacher instructed four schoolchildren in 1933. A chevra kadisha and two charity foundations were active in Aschbach that year. In April 1938, several Jewish families were forced to sell their houses and move in with other Jews. On Pogrom Night, SA men destroyed the synagogue’s interior and broke its windows. Forcing Jews to watch, they burned ritual objects, books and Torah scrolls in the marketplace. Windows in Jewish homes were smashed, the cemetery was desecrated and Jewish men were imprisoned in Bamberg jail, from which three were sent to Dachau. One died there in 1939. Twelve Jews emigrated, nine relocated within Germany and six died in Aschbach. Thirteen were deported to Izbica and Theresienstadt in 1942. At least 44 local Jews perished in the Shoah. The synagogue was converted into an apartment building after 1945. A memorial stone was later unveiled in the cemetery.
Author / Sources: Heidemarie Wawrzyn; Sources: AJ, DJGB, EJL, JLO, PK-BAV, SIA
Located in: bavaria