General information: First Jewish presence: 18th century; peak Jewish population: 100 in 1837 (18.3% of the total population); Jewish population in 1933: 54
Summary: Frankenwinheim’s synagogue, established before 1854, was renovated in 1910, when a mikveh was added to the structure. Although the community was able to maintain its own school in the mid-19th century, burials were conducted in Gerolzhofen. Josef Kissinger, uncle of Henry Kissinger, was the community’s teacher, chazzan and shochet from 1876 until 1927. Four children studied religion in Frankenwinheim in 1933. In October 1938, riots erupted after local Jews were accused of poisoning a well. The synagogue was damaged on Pogrom Night, as were Jewish homes and businesses; many Jewish men were assaulted. The following morning, Jewish women were forced to burn the synagogue’s ritual objects in the street while dressed in prayer shawls and burial shrouds, and with the entire community looking on. Jews were then imprisoned in Gerolzhofen; they were released the next day, but five men were subsequently deported to Buchenwald. The synagogue, Jewish community house and Jewish properties were eventually confiscated. Twenty-two Frankenwinheim Jews emigrated before 1941, and another 20 relocated within Germany. The last 16 (and a family of three from Luelsfeld) were deported to Izbica (via Wuerzburg) and to Theresienstadt in 1942. At least 36 Frankenwinheim Jews perished in the Shoah. A memorial stone was unveiled in Frankenwinheim in 1999.
Author / Sources: Dorothea Shefer-Vanson
Sources: AJ, EJL, PK BAV
Located in: bavaria