General information: First Jewish presence: 1718; peak Jewish population: 19 in 1843; Jewish population in 1933: unknown
Summary: The earliest records of a Jewish presence in Nievern are tax records from the 17th century. A document from 1718 reports the baptism of a Jewish girl at the local parish church. In 1818, the few Jewish residents of Nievern employed a teacher of religion who also served as chazzan and shochet. The town of Frucht was then the region’s Jewish religious center, and the community there maintained a synagogue; in 1852, however, following the enactment of a new system of worship in Nassau, Nievern became the region’s religious center. Services were conducted in a prayer room, located in the house of a local butcher, where the paint, Torah Ark and worshipers’ skullcaps were in the color lilac. Although we do not know how many Jews lived in Nievern in 1933, records do tell us that two Jewish families still lived there in 1938. In 1939, no Jews lived in Nievern. The prayer room was desecrated and plundered on Pogrom Night, as were the two remaining Jewish-owned homes. According to Yad Vashem, eight Nievern Jews perished in the Shoah.
Author / Sources: Fred Gottlieb
Sources: AJ, LJG, SG-RPS