General information: First Jewish presence: 1690; peak Jewish population: 68 in 1905; Jewish population in 1933: 36
Summary: The Jewish community of Wallertheim established a prayer hall in, at the latest, 1851. In order to accommodate the growing Jewish congregation, Wallertheim Jews inaugurated a new synagogue (at 3, Neustrasse) in 1884. Wallertheim had two Jewish cemeteries: the first, consecrated in the early 17th century, was enlarged in 1765 and closed in 1835, after which, in 1840, the community consecrated a new cemetery. We also know that local Jews maintained a mikveh and employed (until the 1930s) a teacher of religion who served as chazzan and shochet. In 1913, windows were smashed in two Jewish homes; a fence was destroyed in a third. By 1927, synagogue services were conducted only on Saturdays. Thirty-six Jews lived in Wallertheim in 1933. A chevra kadisha and a welfare association were active in the community, with which the Jews of Gau-Bickelheim (10) and Armsheim (four) were affiliated. On Pogrom Night, rioters set the synagogue on fire, ransacked Jewish homes and businesses and desecrated the new cemetery; a 94-year-old Jewish man died of wounds he sustained that night. Later, in 1940, the old cemetery was leveled. Twenty-one local Jews emigrated (16 went to the United States), 15 relocated within Germany, one passed away in Wallertheim and one was killed on Pogrom Night. All Jews had left Wallertheim by 1940. At least 26 Wallertheim Jews perished in the Shoah. In 1952, the local council took over the former synagogue, after which the building was used as council offices. Renovated in 2005/06, the building now bears a memorial plaque.
Author / Sources: Nurit Borut
Sources: AJ, EJL, PK-HNF