General information: First Jewish presence: 17th century; peak Jewish population: 79 in 1895 (13.8% of the total population); Jewish population in 1933: 39
Summary: In 1830, the Jewish community of Baumbach replaced its prayer hall with a synagogue whose building housed a mikveh, a schoolroom and a teacher’s apartment. A Jewish elementary school—presided over by a teacher who also served as chazzan and shochet—was opened in 1860 and recognized as a public school in 1881; it closed for lack of pupils in 1917, but reopened in the 1920s. The synagogue, renovated in 1931, had 40 seats for men and 36 for women. Burials took place in Rotenburg an der Fulda until the community consecrated a cemetery in 1909. In 1933, 39 Jews lived in Baumbach. A charitable society and a women’s association were active in the community that year. The Jewish school was closed in 1934. On Pogrom Night, rioters destroyed the synagogue’s interior and desecrated the cemetery. Thirteen local Jews emigrated (10 to the United States), 15 relocated within Germany and 11, the last, were deported to the East in May and September of 1942. At least 37 Baumbach Jews perished in the Shoah. The synagogue building—it was converted into a residence before 1945—changed ownership many times. Affixed to building is a plaque with information on the synagogue’s history. The cemetery was desecrated several times, severely in 1946 and in 1998.
Author / Sources: Nurit Borut; Sources: AJ, EJL, PK-HNF
Located in: hesse