Day 31: Jewish Life in Berlin

Berlin is starting to recognize its Jewish history and the part it plays in understanding the city today. Friday morning’s tour was led by our guide, Matthias Rau, from the Prenzlauer Berg and Berlin Mitte tours. We started at one of three Jewish cemeteries in Berlin. A reproduction of the headstone of Moses Mendelssohn is located in the cemetery (see photos below, upper left). He was one of the major leaders of the Jewish community in Berlin in the 18th Century. If you are interested, you can read more about Moses Mendelssohn here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moses_Mendelssohn

Only some of the stonework with inscriptions were salvaged at the cemetery. The grave sites are covered with ivy.

Photos above:

1. Upper Middle Left: The site of the “missing house” is used to identify Jews who had lived in the building. Tags on adjacent buildings indicate where each family lived and are stark reminders of the lives that disappeared.

2. Upper Middle, Right: Brass plated tiles with inscriptions of names of Jewish people who lived in the area are found throughout Berlin. Organized by a private foundation, this effort identifies individuals, their birthdates, where they died, and when. Most of the inscriptions we saw identified Auschwitz as the place of death. (We later noticed plates in Kreuzberg.)

3. Upper right: A tribute to Regina Jonas, the first woman rabbi in Berlin. She was part of the Jewish liberal sector.

4. Lower Left and Lower Middle: The New Jewish Synagogue (1866, Oranienstrasse 30) was the center of the Jewish community (also wooden doorway from Entrance) .

5. Lower Right: Augustus Strasse, where the Jewish School (shown in photo on the left) was located. It now is used for community space, the Kennedy Center, and other public facilities (Pauly Saal Restaurant and Mogg, a cafe, are located in the building).

 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s