General information: First Jewish presence: 1842; peak Jewish population: 95 in 1899; Jewish population in 1933: 74
Summary: The Jewish community of Quakenbrueck started to grow during the mid-19th century. In 1865, the community applied to the district rabbinate of Hanover for help in building a synagogue. The appeal was rejected, and it was not until 1897, by which point the Jews of this small town had prospered, that the community built a synagogue with schoolrooms. Quakenbrueck was also home to a Jewish elementary school. Jews played a prominent role in the economic progress of the town, and Jewish-Christian relations were harmonious. Six local Jewish men were awarded the Iron Cross during World War I; two fell in the line of duty. The anti-Jewish boycott of 1933 was not zealously enforced in Quakenbrueck, and comparatively few Jews left the town. Nevertheless, Quakenbrueck was not spared the ravages of Pogrom Night, when a group of SA men from nearby Cloppenburg raided the synagogue, set it on fire, burned the ritual objects and Torah scroll, vandalized Jewish homes and arrested Jewish men. When war broke out in 1939, a mere 14 Jews still lived in the town, from which they were later deported. In 1983, a memorial plaque was unveiled in memory of Quakenbrueck’s former Jewish community.
Author / Sources: Harold Slutzkin
Sources: EJL, JGNB, LJG
Located in: lower-saxony