General information: First Jewish presence: 1725; peak Jewish population; 243 in 1900; Jewish population in 1933: 163 or 187
Summary: The first Jews to settle in Ludwigsburg (in 1725) were court Jews, among them Joseph Suesskind Oppenheimer, whose nickname was Jud Suess (“the Jew Suess”). Local Jews inaugurated their first synagogue in 1824. In 1884, a new synagogue was inaugurated at the corner of Alleenstrasse and Solitudenstrasse; it housed a school and a library, and we also know that the building was renovated in 1934. The community consecrated a cemetery in 1870; according to records, a new cemetery was consecrated inside the general burial grounds in 1897/99. In 1933, somewhere between 163 and 187 Jews lived in Ludwigsburg. A teacher/chazzan instructed 22 Jewish schoolchildren in religion, and several Jewish associations and branches of national organizations were active in the town. The community opened an elementary school in 1936. In October 1938, local Polish Jews were deported to Poland. One month later, on Pogrom Night, the synagogue was set on fire, but not before the rioters had ripped up its books and Torah scrolls. Windows in Jewish-owned businesses were smashed, and 12 Jews were sent to Dachau, where one died. Nevertheless, local Jews continued to congregate in a community center—it was established at 3 Hohenzollernstrasse in the spring of 1938—until 1941. Fifty-seven Jews moved to Ludwigsburg after 1933, and five babies were born there. One hundred and forty-six Jews emigrated, 12 relocated within Germany, 17 died in Ludwigsburg, two committed suicide and 62 were deported to concentration camps. At least 56 Ludwigsburg Jews perished in the Shoah. In 1958, the Ludwigsburger Zentralstelle, Germany’s central organization for the investigation of Nazi crimes, was founded. In 1959, a memorial stone was unveiled in the town; and in 1988, the outline of the former synagogue’s layout was reconstructed using tiles and trees. The town cemetery, too, houses a memorial.
Author / Sources: Heike Zaun Goshen
Sources: AH, AJ, EJL, HU, PK-BW
Located in: baden-wuerttemberg