General information: First Jewish presence: 17th century; peak Jewish population: 56 in 1848; Jewish population in 1933: unknown (21 in 1932)
Summary: In 1665, the forerunners of Teschenmoschel’s Jewish community consecrated a cemetery near the town’s general burial grounds. Jewish population figures are not available for the 17th century, but we do know that 22 Jews lived in Teschenmoschel in 1804. During the 19th century, Teschenmoschel Jews were members of the larger Rockenhausen Jewish community. By 1756, religious services were being conducted in a synagogue; established in a residential building, that synagogue is thought to have contained 35 seats for men and 20 for women. In 1893, members of the dwindling Waldgrehweiler Jewish community began to attend services in Teschenmoschel and, as a result, the synagogue received two Torah scrolls. After 1911, however, due to a drop in the Jewish population, the synagogue was rarely used. In 1932, one Jewish child received religious instruction. The Jews of Doermoschel and Waldgrehweiler were affiliated with the Teschenmoschel community. On Pogrom Night, the synagogue was stormed, vandalized and looted; ritual objects were thrown out, loaded onto a horse-drawn wagon and burned just outside the town. The synagogue was sold to the municipality in 1939 and demolished in 1945. Twelve Jews lived in Teschenmoschel in 1938. On October 22, 1940, the remaining six Jews were deported to Gurs, France. At least seven Teschenmoschel Jews perished in the Shoah. In 1950, the municipality returned the synagogue site to the official Jewish community of the Rhine-Palatinate region, which put the site up for sale in 1975.
Author / Sources: Esther Sarah Evans
Sources: AJ, EJL, FGW, SG-RPS