General information: First Jewish presence: 17th century; peak Jewish population: 101 in 1861 (24.4% of the total population); Jewish population in 1933: 18
Summary: The Jewish community of Diemerode was founded in 1725. Records from that year mention a synagogue—it may have housed a mikveh—located in a Jewish residence at 10 Dorfstrasse. Diemerode’s Jewish elementary school, established, at the latest, in 1859, was located in a rented building (55 Dorfstrasse) and presided over by a teacher who also served as chazzan and shochet. The community purchased the school in 1868, after which a synagogue was inaugurated there; the school, however, was closed down in 1882. We also know that burials took place in Sontra until 1862, when a Jewish cemetery was consecrated northeast of the village. On Pogrom Night, the synagogue was broken into and its interior destroyed. The businesses and homes of the three remaining Jewish families were ransacked. Six local Jews emigrated, three relocated within Germany and five passed away. Five Jews, the village’s last, were deported to the East in June 1942. At least 24 Diemerode Jews perished in the Shoah. Polish forced laborers and French POWs were housed in the synagogue building during the war. The municipality purchased the building in 1951, and in 1958 it was converted into a warehouse for the fire brigade. The building was pulled down in 1974, and the site now accommodates a residence and a garage.
Author / Sources: Heike Zaun Goshen
Sources: AH, AJ, EJL, PK-HNF, SIA
Located in: hesse