General information: First Jewish presence: 1680; peak Jewish population: 170 in 1905 (11.9 % of the total population); Jewish population in 1933: 158
Summary: The Jewish community of Guxhagen, founded in or around 1809, established a cemetery on Albshaeuser Strasse that same year. Jews conducted services in a prayer room on Sellestrasse (with a mikveh in the basement) until 1823, when the community inaugurated a synagogue at 9 Untere Gasse; the two-story building accommodated 74 seats for men, 46 for women, a classroom and an apartment for the teacher. Guxhagen’s Jewish elementary school, established in 1823, was presided over by a teacher who also served as shochet and chazzan. In 1933, 29 children attended the Jewish school; the school was closed in 1936. On Pogrom Night, the interiors of the school and synagogue were destroyed; windows were broken, and ritual objects desecrated. A mob attacked Jewish homes, assaulted Jews and drove them out of town. Eleven Jewish men and a 14-year-old boy were arrested and sent to the nearby Breitenau concentration camp, from which they were later deported to Buchenwald. The municipality appropriated the synagogue building and converted it into a residential building. Nineteen local Jews emigrated, 72 relocated within Germany and 14 passed away. In 1941, 31 Guxhagen Jews were deported to Riga; in 1942, eight were deported to Theresienstadt. At least 100 Guxhagen Jews perished in the Shoah. In 1985, a memorial plaque was unveiled at the former synagogue building.
Photo: Picture of a class of a Jewish school in Guxhagen, taken at the entrance of the synagogue in 1909. Courtesy of: Shmuel Katz / www. vor‑dem‑holocaust. de
Author / Sources: Heike Zaun Goshen
Sources: AH, AJ, EJL, PK H
Located in: hesse