History of the Jews in East Frisia

Die Synagoge in Emden
the synagog in Emden

the history of the Jews in East Frisia covers one period of approx. 400 years of their beginnings in 15. Century up to their at the end of of 1942.

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the Middle Ages

since the Middle Ages lived Jews in Weser Ems - area and before 1550 the first Jews in Emden already established themselves . In the county East Frisia possessed first the city Emden the right to issue Jew charters. Subsequently, in all ostfriesischen cities and to unite marks synagog municipalities were created, like Aurich (1636), federation (1670), Dornum (1717), Emden (1571, first indirect referring to 1530), Esens (1637), Jemgum (1604), empty (1611), Neustadtgödens (1639), the north (1577), Weener (1645) and joke mouth (1637). Starting from 1833 there was then also a synagog municipality on Norderney. During the Middle Ages and the early modern times East Frisia was the only area in Northwest Germany, which bore Jew. They had to leave Oldenburg due to the plague epidemic disease of 1349/ 50 and game living 1350, after they were accused of of the well poisoning. Only end 17. Century were allowed to again establish themselves they there.

The Jewish municipality was led by the Landesrabbinat in Emden, which was responsible for Osnabrück. Religious head was the Landesrabbiner. In the individual municipalities selected chiefs administered all affairs of the synagog, training and arm nature. The religious life was usually coined/shaped in the smaller municipalities by the Jewish teacher. It was active with the service in the synagog also as Vorbeter and provided as Schächter for koscheres meat. It was forbidden to the Jew in East Frisia working as craftsmen or farmers why they were active as dealers or butchers usually. This led to the fact that markets without Jewish dealers, butchers and cattle dealers were inconceivable, although the portion of the Jews of the ostfriesischen population amounted to only 1%. Most Jews in East Frisia lived in simple and average conditions.

30-jähriger war

the dreissigjährige war secured principal-strong Jews by the constantly growing financial requirement of the war parties on the one hand a lodging right, loaded it on the other hand in addition, in an up to then unknown extent. The list of their financial obligations was long. 1629 paid the Emder Jew (as representatives of the Jewish municipalities of East Frisia) 180 guldens protection money in the year, 200 guldens peat money as well as about 2000 guldens at various indirect taxes, altogether thus 2580 guldens. In addition still rent, marriage funds, extraordinary deliveries came to the national gentleman: 4 guldens protection money per household plus 150 realm valleys start money. Altogether the situation was in East Frisia however until 1744 comfortable compared with other areas relatively. Thus one permitted the Jewish municipality of Emden even to put on their cemetery within the Stadtmauern (1700), which refers to a relative acknowledgment, even if her to in 19. Century without citizen rights to live had and under special laws suffered.

until 1933

after 1744 and the incorporation of East Frisia into the Kingdom of Prussia the legal and economic situation of the ostfriesischen Jews worsened. A frightening depletion began, so that nearly Jews of the arm support lived half of the Emder. During the Napoleoni time of 1806 - 1815 was the Jews for the first time the remaining inhabitants on an equal footing. This was again revised however during the Hannoveraner time (1815 - 1866) immediately and the Jews had to accept restrictions again. To 1870 new laws finally brought the citizen rights also for Jews in East Frisia. The last (legal) separating contrasts were diminished up to the end of the First World War. Now (and became) the ostfriesischen Jews could be selected into the town councillors or be become member of an association.

In the 20's minister Ludwig Münchmeyer from Borkum with anti-Semitic Hasstiraden goaded the public on, and from the workers and/or. found coming agitators to the handicraft due to their vocational like social proximity resonance good to the Proletariat particularly in the larger places. This led also in East Frisia to the education of zionistischer groups, which saw their future in Palestine.

national socialism

memory of the Jewish municipalities of East Frisia in Jad waSchem

the overwhelming majority of the Jews remained however in East Frisia and was unprotectedly delivered starting from 1933 of pursuit by the national socialists. East Frisia is thereby a mirror of the events in the rest of German Reich. First Jewish business was boycotted and excluded Jews from the associations. The next impact was the “realm crystal night” of 9. on the 10.11.1938. The synagogs in East Frisia were down-burned by the applied mobilization. Received is today only the synagog of Dornum, which to 7. November 1938 was sold to a carpenter. All Jews were together-driven and arrested, women and children however soon again to dismiss. The male Jews kidnapped the national socialists into the concentration camp Saxonia living. The Jewish municipalities were now no more bodies of public right, but now than “Jewish Kultusvereinigungen registered association” into the register of associations were registered. In February 1940 the Gestapo finally instructed all Jews, up to the 1. To leave April of the yearly East Frisia. The ostfriesischen Jews had to look for each other other dwellings within the German Reich (with exception of Hamburg and the Linksrheini areas). East Frisia was explained for Jew-free and was it in fact also. Remainders of the Jewish population knew her life in the Jewish old people's home in Emden periods, until also they were deportiert 1942 .

after 1945

many Jews from East Frisia were emigriert, the majority however by the national socialists and their accomplices were killed up to the end of the Second World War. An exact number of the murdered ones is not to be determined, one can however from a number of 1000 killed Jews in East Frisia proceed, which means about half of the 1925 in East Frisia counted Jew (2146). The Jewish population (and with them the Jewish culture) is however with the year 1942 to end. Nowadays there is no Jewish population more in East Frisia.

see also


  • harsh ore Reyer, Martin Tielke (Hrsg): Frisia Judaica. Contributions for the history of the Jews in East Frisia (Aurich 1988) [ISBN 3-925365-40-0]
  • Werner Teuber: Jewish cattle dealers in East Frisia and in the northern Ems country 1871 - 1942. A comparative study to a Jewish occupational group in two economically and konfessionell different regions (Cloppenburg 1995)
  • Ostfriesi culture and education center of the Ostfriesi landscape (Hrsg): From the history of the Auricher Jew municipality 1592 - 1940, Bde 1 and 2 (Aurich 1982/4. Aufl.)
  • refuge realm wine: The Jews in the ostfriesischen glory Dornum (1662-1940), (Dornum 1995) [ISBN 3-931641-03-1]
  • refuge realm wine: Stone witnesses of Jewish life in Dornum (Dornum 1994)
  • Marianne Claudi, pure hard Claudi: Which we lost. Life stories Emder Jew (Aurich 1988), [ISBN 3-925365-31-1]
  • Lina Gödeken: Approximately around the synagog in the north (Aurich 2000), [ISBN 3-932206-18-5]
  • harsh ore Obenaus (Hrsg.), historical manual of the Jewish municipalities in Lower Saxony and Bremen [ISBN 3-89244-753-5]
  • the end of the Jews in East Frisia, catalog to the exhibition of the Ostfriesi landscape from cause 50. Anniversary of the crystal night, publishing house Ostfriesi landscape, Aurich 1988 [ISBN 3-925365-41-9]

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