Hamburg - 4 Beneckestrasse, Rotherbaum neighborhood; the Neue Dammtor Synagogue

Summary: Built in 1895, this synagogue replaced the overcrowded Newe Sholaum Synagogue on Hamburg’s famous street, the Jungfernstieg (the Newe Sholaum Synagogue no longer met safety regulations). The new building was privately financed and erected on private property. Services were Orthodox even though certain elements of Orthodox tradition were omitted; accordingly, the Neue Dammtor Synagogue remained independent of the Orthodox and the Reform religious associations. The Neue Dammtor congregation also maintained a school for religious studies. The synagogue stood in the backyard of the property at 4 Beneckestrasse and was enclosed on three sides. The architectural style was largely Oriental: colorful tiles on the northern facade, Oriental features in the 500-seat interior and a colorful dome atop the building. Although the synagogue was vandalized on Pogrom Night (November 1938), it was not destroyed. In fact, Neue Dammtor was the only synagogue in Germany to be rebuilt after the pogrom, with services continuing in secret until 1943. Rabbi Carlebach (an Orthodox rabbi from a neighboring synagogue which had been destroyed) conducted services in the Neue Dammtor during that period. The synagogue was destroyed during the war, and the grounds are now a university-owned park. A memorial plaque commemorates the former synagogue.
Photo: The Neue Dammtor synagogue in Hamburg. Courtesy of: Archives of the City State of Hamburg.
Author / Sources: Ruth Martina Trucks
Sources: EJL, LJG
Located in: hamburg