Jewish Museum and Synagogue Veitshöchheim

The Museum for Jewish Culture in Veitshöchheim was opened in 1994. It is a non-government institution, held by the city of Veitshöchheim. There are three elements combined in the museum: the synagogue of 1730, the museum galleries in the rooms of a private Jewish home of the 18th century and the Genizah, wich was found in the attic of the synagogue. The museum provides information about Jewish history and culture in Veitshöchheim and northern Bavaria from the 17th until the 20th centuries.

The museum highlight is the synagogue, which was built in 1730. 1938 it was purchased by the town of Veitshöchheim to be converted into a fire station in 1940. After the war the city of Veitshöchheim made a payment to the IRSO. In 1986 the town council of Veitshöchheim decided to renovate the building. The stone fragments of the original interior (Bima and Aron Hakodesch) were discovered beneath the floor. This find prompted local officials to transform the Synagogue to its original function and to reconstruct the baroque interior of the former synagogue. Today the Synagogue of Veitshöchheim can be used for Jewish services again. The building of the synagogue includes the former Kantor’s apartment (also Jewish school) and the former Mikwe. A small 18th century building next to the Synagogue, which was the home of a Jewish family until about 1850, is used today for the museum galleries.

Fragment of the mizrach, found in the Veitshöchheim genizah

paper, painted in 1839

Inv. no. M 1 (14)

During renovation in 1986 an entire Genizah was found in the attic of the Synagogue. The Genizah is stored in the Museum Archive in Veitshöchheim. The printed or handwritten texts contain valuable information concerning the religious, political and social life of the Jews in Northern Bavaria from the late 17th to the early 20th century. A small part of the Veitshöchheim Genizah (about 100 objects) is currently displayed in the museum galleries in. The authentic atmosphere of the home corresponds to the objects on display.

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