General information: First Jewish presence: 1800; peak Jewish population: 80 in the mid-19th century; Jewish population in 1933: 7
Summary: The Jews of Langweiler conducted services in a modest prayer house between the years 1840 to 1854, when a modest synagogue was built on Dorfstrasse. On the synagogue’s 75th anniversary, the inner room (where up to 100 Jews attended weekly services) was adorned with beautiful paintings and a large chandelier. Founded in 1843, the community’s school was the Aachen district’s first officially recognized Jewish elementary and religious school. Although local residents managed to prevent the incineration of the synagogue building on Pogrom Night, its interior was nevertheless destroyed; eyewitness reports tell us that rioters swung from the chandelier and used axes to demolish the synagogue’s contents. Langweiler’s three remaining Jewish homes were attacked that night. During the war, Polish forced laborers were housed in the synagogue building. We also know that the site was used as a warehouse for agricultural equipment until the 1960s, when the building was demolished to make room for coal mines. Headstones from Langweiler’s Jewish cemetery were eventually moved to Dueren. A memorial plaque was unveiled in Langweiler in 1988.
Author / Sources: Ruth Martina Trucks
Sources: EJL, LJG, SG-NRW