General information: First Jewish presence: 1723 (two families); peak Jewish population: 90 in 1878 (14.3% of the total population); Jewish population in 1933: 17
Summary: Records suggest that the Jews of Hahnheim may have established a prayer room in the early 19th century. We know for certain, however, that the community opened a cemetery and a synagogue in 1840, the latter of which was built on the Synagogenhof, or “synagogue yard,” (later renamed Freier Platz). The cemetery was vandalized in 1904. By 1933, the Jews of Koengernheim, Mommenheim and Selzen had been affiliated with the Hahnheim community. One day after Pogrom Night, rioters set the synagogue building on fire; fuelled with goods and utensils looted from Jewish homes and businesses, the blaze, by the time it died out, had gutted the entire building. The synagogue’s ruins were cleared shortly after the pogrom. The cellar roof, however, which protruded one meter above ground level, remained intact, and was later used as a podium for Naziorganized public events; the cellar itself was used for storing water. Four converts were the only Jews to remain in Hahnheim after Pogrom Night. At least three Hahnheim Jews perished in the Shoah. Hahnheim’s Jewish cemetery was destroyed in 1944, after which the headstones were used to construct an anti-tank trap. The cemetery was rebuilt after the war, and a memorial stone was unveiled there in 1981.
Author / Sources: Bronagh Bowerman
Sources: AJ, EJL, PK-HNF, SG-RPS