General information: First Jewish presence: 18th century; peak Jewish population: 60 in the 19th century; Jewish population in 1933: 20 (see below)
Summary: The earliest available record of a Jewish presence in Hochneukirch is from the mid-18th century. Most local Jews were peddlers and livestock traders. The community attended services in neighboring synagogues until August 15, 1902, when it inaugurated a small synagogue on Weidenstrasse (present-day Von-Werth- Strasse). The Jewish cemetery on Am Stromberg had been consecrated in 1824. Sources differ regarding Jewish population figures for 1933. Either 20 or 50 Jews lived there at the beginning of the Nazi period. We know for certain, however, that the Jews of Hochneukirch had been affiliated with the Jewish community of Juechen by 1933. On Pogrom Night (November 10, 1938), the synagogue building was set on fire, Jewish homes were attacked. The synagogue ruins were removed several days later. In all, 27 local Jews were deported to the concentration and extermination camps in Eastern Europe. At least 34 Hochneukirch Jews perished in the Shoah. The Jewish cemetery was desecrated in 1951, as it had been during the Nazi period; there, the last burial took place in 1969, but it was not until 1996 that the cemetery was declared a historical site. Unveiled in 1980, a memorial plaque commemorates the former synagogue.
Author / Sources: Heidi Wawrzyn
Sources: EJL, FJG, HU, LJG, SIA, YV