General information: First Jewish presence: 1733; peak Jewish population: 78 in 1861; Jewish population in 1933: 32
Summary: The Jewish community of Battenberg (district of Waldeck- Frankenberg, in Hesse) belonged to the district rabbinate in Marburg. Only four Jewish widows lived there in 1770, but the town’s Jewish population experienced significant growth in the 19th century. Although the Jews of Battenberg did not maintain their own communal institutions—using, instead, the school, mikveh and cemetery in nearby Battenfeld—several Jewish teachers worked in Battenberg, among them Elias Birkenstein (1818-1831), one of the first teachers of the Reform movement in Hesse. Thirty-two Jews lived in Battenberg in 1933. By September 1939, only one Jewish family, the Isenberg-Stern family, lived there. The remaining six Jews were deported in 1942, and we also know that 16 local Jews were murdered in the Shoah. On Pogrom Night (November 1938), the synagogue building was destroyed. A memorial “stumbling block,” erected in the town’s Laisa district, commemorates the Freudenthal family.
Author / Sources: Benjamin Rosendahl; Sources: AJ, LJG, YV
Located in: hesse