Pogrome night in Essen: The synagogue burns

In the night of November 9 to 10, the synagogue was set on fire. The wooden benches were burned, the lead frames of the beautiful stained-glass windows melted, and the Torah scrolls were torn out of their shrine and thrown onto the square in front of the Old Catholic Peace Church. Many people watched in bewilderment. The fire department did not intervene. It protected only neighboring buildings. Hundreds of Jewish men were deported to the Dachau concentration camp and were only released if they promised to emigrate from the German Reich within a few weeks. By 1939, nearly half of the Jews in Essen had fled. 

In the black and white photography you can clearly see how onlookers are watching the event. The imposing synagogue has burned out and its roof has already collapsed.

Timeline Essen

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