General information: First Jewish presence: 1815; peak Jewish population: 337 in 1871; Jewish population in 1932/33: 170
Summary: Jewish families settled in Marienburg in 1814/15, shortly after which they formed a community. The town’s Jewish population increased during the second half of the 19th century, peaking at 337 in 1871. The Jews of Marienburg consecrated a synagogue and a cemetery in 1830. Later, in 1897/98, the community built a new synagogue on Schulgasse (or “school alley” – school meaning “synagogue”); it was inaugurated in August 1898. A local Jew was appointed to the city council in 1864. Other prominent Marienburg Jews include Heinz Galinski (born in 1912), a Marienburg native who served as the president of the Central Council of Jews in Germany from 1988 to 1992. We also know that the Association of East Prussian Communities, an organization that aided Eastern European Jews, opened an office in Marienburg in the early 20th century. In 1932/33, Marienburg was home to 170 Jews; 18 schoolchildren received religious instruction from a teacher who also served as chazzan. Active in the community were a Jewish women’s association (founded in 1926), a nursing association, a burial society, a youth group, a literature club, and, finally, a local branch of the Reich Federation of Jewish Front Soldiers. The synagogue was burned down on Pogrom Night (November 1938). By May of that year, only 33 Jews still lived in Marienburg. According to records, 31 local Jews were murdered in the Shoah.
Photo: A group of school pupils posing in front of the synagogue of Marienburg in or around the year 1900. Courtesy of: Unknown.
Author / Sources: Heidemarie Wawrzyn Sources: EJL, FJG, LJG
Located in: posen-west-prussia