Bad Homburg Synagogue: Bad Homburg vor der Höhe , Germany. Built 1866, burned to the ground Kristallnacht, 1938.
Bad Homburg had a continuous Jewish presence since the 16th century(An earlier Jewish community fled after the Black Death pogroms of 1348/49.)
Bad Homburg synagogue, was built In 1866, replacing a smaller synagogue built in 1732, to accommodate a growing community. A community center with prayer hall, schoolrooms, teacher’s apartment and mikveh was added behind it in 1877; and the synagogue was significantly expanded (as seen here) in 1904.
When built, relations with the surrounding gentile community were so good that the local sovereign, city, and spa management, each contributed large sums towards the synagogue’s construction, and high ranking government officials attended the laying of its cornerstone, and it’s opening. At is official inauguration, among pomp and circumstance, the architect handed the key of the synagogue to the King of Prussia’s representative, who handed then it to the rabbi.
The town was home to 3 renowned Jewish sanatoriums and 2 kosher hotels. By the time the Nazis came to power, Bad Homberg’s Jewish community had a cemetery, mikveh, community library, and charities to assist the sick and needy, provide firewood in the winter for the poor, help travelers, provide funerals, provide vocational training, and provide wedding trousseaus for poor Jewish girls.
Yet despite this warm history, on Kristallnacht, the synagogue’s interior was first destroyed, and the synagogue was then burned to the ground. Jewish businesses and homes were wrecked, property was destroyed or looted, and Jewish men were sent to Buchenwald. The ruins of the synagogue were then dynamited in the spring of 1939 by a military unit. The Jewish community center, with the school, was spared and later used to host the Hitler Youth and the League of German girls
At least 146 local Jews perished in the Shoah. A playground was later built on the synagogue site, and the former Jewish school is now a high school.
(13 inches high x 12 inches wide x 4 inches wide)