General information: First Jewish presence: 1704; peak Jewish population: 38 in 1871; Jewish population in 1933: 18
Summary: The Jewish population of the area around Voerden was small during the 18th century. Voerden itself, which is today part of the city of Maienmuenster in the district of Hoexter, was then the town that had the largest number of Jewish residents. Voerden’s Jewish congregation, founded officially in 1841, conducted services in private residences. The location of these prayer rooms changed frequently; the last was in the Bacharach family home on Marktstrasse. We also know that the community maintained a cemetery at Im Hoggen—it was consecrated in the early 19th century—and that Jewish children received religious instruction from a private teacher. Mostly poor, the Jews of Voerden were never able to build a proper synagogue. On the night of November 10, 1938, windows in two Jewish stores were smashed, Jewish homes were partially wrecked and the prayer hall’s modest inventory was auctioned off. Jews were dragged out of their homes and sent to the nearby town of Hoexter. Five Voerden Jews, the last, were eventually deported to Riga.
Author / Sources: Ruth Martina Trucks
Sources: EJL, LJG, SG-NRW