• Museum of Jewish Culture Augsburg – Swabia
The synagogue in Augsburg's Halderstraße was built between 1914 and 1917. It was reinaugurated in 1985 and has since then been home to the Museum of Jewish Culture Augsburg-Swabia.
During the »Kristallnacht« in November 1938, National Socialists looted the synagogue and set it on fire, yet the substance of the building remained intact. More than half of the members of the Jewish community died in ghettos and death camps.
Image: Augsburg, about 1920, The synagogue shortly after its completion, Stiftung Jüdisches Kulturmuseum Augsburg-Schwaben, Heinz Glässel
Augsburg, about 1920, The synagogue shortly after its completion, Stiftung Jüdisches Kulturmuseum Augsburg-Schwaben, Heinz Glässel

Image: Augsburg, 2003, The Museum of Jewish Culture, Stiftung Jüdisches Kulturmuseum Augsburg-Schwaben, Silvio Wyszengrad
Augsburg, 2003, The Museum of Jewish Culture, Stiftung Jüdisches Kulturmuseum Augsburg-Schwaben, Silvio Wyszengrad
There is documentary evidence for the existence of a Jewish community in Augsburg from the 13th century on; from about 1290, the community had not only a synagogue but also a ritual bath and a Jewish school. Over the next centuries, the attitude towards the Jews of Augsburg fluctuated between tolerance and exclusion. At the beginning of the 19th century, the Jewish community began to flourish. A prayer room was established and in April 7, 1865, a new synagogue inaugurated. The building was soon too small for the growing community, and efforts were made to build a new one. In 1914, construction was begun on the Halderstraße, according to a design by architect Fritz Landauer. On April 4, 1917, the synagogue was consecrated.
With the rise of the National Socialists to power in 1933, the gradual exclusion of Jews from all public life was set in motion: they were forced out of their professions, they had to sell their businesses under value, and eventually Jewish children were no longer allowed to attend public schools. On the night of November 9/10, 1938, armed men forcibly entered the synagogue, destroyed its interior and set fire to the building. That same night the fire brigade put out the fire in order to protect neighbouring buildings and prevent the fire from spreading to a nearby fuel depot. About 150 Jewish men from Augsburg were arrested that night and incarcerated at the Dachau concentration camp for approximately one month. In the following years, part of the community emigrated from Germany. Between 1941 and 1943, the SS deported the remaining Jews of Augsburg to ghettos and extermination camps in the east.
Image: Augsburg, about 1920, The synagogue shortly after its completion, Stiftung Jüdisches Kulturmuseum Augsburg-Schwaben, Heinz Glässel
Augsburg, about 1920, The synagogue shortly after its completion, Stiftung Jüdisches Kulturmuseum Augsburg-Schwaben, Heinz Glässel

Image: Augsburg, 2003, The Museum of Jewish Culture, Stiftung Jüdisches Kulturmuseum Augsburg-Schwaben, Silvio Wyszengrad
Augsburg, 2003, The Museum of Jewish Culture, Stiftung Jüdisches Kulturmuseum Augsburg-Schwaben, Silvio Wyszengrad
Of the 1,200 member large Jewish community of Augsburg, about 560 were able to flee abroad. Over 600 people were murdered by the SS in ghettos and concentration camps.
Image: Augsburg, after 1945, The interior of the synagogue, which was demolished in 1938, Stiftung Jüdisches Kulturmuseum Augsburg-Schwaben
Augsburg, after 1945, The interior of the synagogue, which was demolished in 1938, Stiftung Jüdisches Kulturmuseum Augsburg-Schwaben

Image: Augsburg, 2010, Panoramic view of the synagogue interior, Ulrich Wagner
Augsburg, 2010, Panoramic view of the synagogue interior, Ulrich Wagner
Already in 1946, survivors established the Jewish community of Augsburg anew. In 1963/64, part of the synagogue building was remodelled into the so-called small synagogue where services were now held. The main synagogue was reinaugurated on September 1, 1985; at the same time, the Museum of Jewish Culture was opened in the western section of the building complex, becoming the first Jewish museum in Bavaria. Since 2006, a new permanent exhibition on the history of the Jewish community of Augsburg has been on display at the museum.
Image: Augsburg, 2006, Permanent exhibition, view of the section »Rural Jewry«, Innenarchitekturbüro Kolb
Augsburg, 2006, Permanent exhibition, view of the section »Rural Jewry«, Innenarchitekturbüro Kolb

Name
Jüdisches Kulturmuseum Augsburg – Schwaben
Address
Halderstraße 6-8
86150 Augsburg
Phone
+49 (0)821 513 658
Fax
+49 (0)821 513 626
Web
http://www.jkmas.de
E-Mail
office@jkmas.de
Open
Tuesday to Thursday: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Friday: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Sunday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
every first Wednesday of the month: 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Closed on Mondays, Saturdays, Jewish holidays, December 24, 25 and Easter Sunday
Possibilities
Guided tours, library