The Jewish community of Haigerloch was a religious community in Haigerloch in what is now the Zollernalb district in Baden-Württemberg , which had existed for over six centuries and was destroyed during the Nazi era . Today, the former Haigerloch synagogue e. V. an association that deals with the memory and history of Jewish life in Haigerloch.
Haigerloch's Jewish life has been documented since the Middle Ages . The Rottenburg document "Vifelin, the Jew from Haigerloch" dates from 1346 . A cremation of Jews in Haigerloch on December 13, 1348 is reported by the Konstanz canon and chronicler Heinrich von Diessenhofen, although it is not known how many Jews were killed in this process. The background to this burning of the Jews is probably that the Jews were held responsible for the plague epidemic .
During the 14th and 15th centuries, there was hardly any evidence of Jewish history in Haigerloch. Jews are only mentioned in documents on the extraordinary imperial tax (“coronation tax”, “third pfennig”) from the years 1418, 1433 and 1438 and in the “Bickelpergsche Lagerbuch” from 1435 with a document “Ysac, Jude von Haigerloch” .
Only in the first half of the 16th century did a Jewish community emerge that would last. Since many Jews were expelled from the imperial cities and from Württemberg during the Reformation around 1525 , they found refuge with the Counts of Hohenzollern , among others, for an annual protection fee , which became a lucrative source of income for them. The first known letter of protection of this kind dates from October 6, 1534 and was written by Count Christoph Friedrich von Zollerndisplayed. These letters of protection were limited in time and had to be purchased again after their validity had expired. They were subject to conditions, so that only one child from a family was allowed to marry at a time and that opportunities to earn a living were restricted to trade. Further letters of protection from the years 1595, 1640, 1688, 1700, 1745, 1780 and 1805 have also been preserved for Haigerloch.
In 1587 the Jewish cemetery of the community in Weildorf was mentioned for the first time in a pension bill . A Jewish school , i.e. a synagogue in Haigerloch , was first mentioned in a document in 1595, although nothing is known about the location at that time. However, it was common for these to be prayer rooms in private houses, which was probably also the rule in Haigerloch until a synagogue was built.
During this time, the Jews were forbidden from accessing the guilds and from acquiring land, so that they could only use trade as an opportunity to earn a living. Because they play an important role as traveling tradersthe demand of the Haigerloch population for a lifting of the protection of Jews, which would have resulted in an expulsion of the Jewish population, could not be enforced by the protest of the surrounding villages. The demands of the Haigerloch population were due to the strong competition between the Jews and the local traders and the indebtedness of the Jews. The villages, on the other hand, benefited from this traveling trade, as they were supplied by the Jews, who were also paid for in kind, such as food, raw materials or utensils, i.e. bartered.
At the end of the first half of the 18th century, Prince Josef Friedrich wanted to expel the Jews from Haigerloch and gave the population this promise. However, the letter of protection was renewed in 1745, on the grounds that the Jews had behaved impeccably. But in 1749 a marriage ban came into force for the Jews with the aim of decimating the Jews biologically. However, this was soon restricted again because they did not want to do without the protection money.
In 1752 the prince ordered a Sunday visit to the Catholic Church, but only three families converted to Christianity because of this.
Jewish community in The Hague
Until 1780 the Jews lived in Haigerloch in a scattered way, both in the upper and in the lower town, and to a large extent for rent, since it was difficult or forbidden for them to buy real estate. However, they formed their own community with a Jewish school or Barnas appointed by the prince as a board of directors.
In 1780, Prince Karl Friedrich ordered that all Jews without a house of their own had to move to the Haagviertel. The reason for this was the utilization of the neglected Haagschlössle and the advance financing by the Jews for the conversion into apartments and later rent. However, only four of the ten families that settled there came from Haigerloch. In 1795 the number of families remaining in the city was 22.
In the letter of protection of 1780, the Jews were allowed to erect additional buildings. Building on this, a Jewish hostel, later a poor house, and in 1785 a butcher's shop were built.
Housing became scarce due to the increase in the number of protected Jews up to 1795. For this reason, the prince allowed the construction of apartments on a lease basis, that is, he gave the Jews a building site and the Jews could then build their own building. Although the Jews had to finance the buildings themselves, the owner remained the prince and the Jews had to pay an annual land rent. A whole series of buildings were built in this way in the following years. In 1813, however, the prince sold part and in 1815 the rest of the land in the Hague for a total of 300 gulden(in six annual installments) to the Jewish community. This lifted the 100-year house purchase ban, and the protected Jews became owners of their houses. Further construction work followed in the northern part of the Hague, in 1850 the constructional development was finally practically complete, because no major construction work had been carried out by the end of the Jewish Quarter in 1942.
From around 1780 the infrastructure for a functioning Jewish community was created. The synagogue was inaugurated with a mikveh in 1783 . In 1803 a Jewish cemetery was laid out in the Hague . Around 1815 the sovereign sold the entire Hague to the local Jewish community. In 1820 a sovereign rabbinate was established , in 1823 a Jewish elementary school , in 1825 a community bakery and a poor house. In 1844 the Jewish community built a three-storey community hall with living space for the rabbi, the Jewish teacher and a school. In 1885 a new mikveh , a butcher's shop (Judenmetzig) and a Jewish-run inn were built.
Until the first half of the 19th century, the Jews lived under the prince's letter of protection with all rights and obligations. In the context of the Enlightenment, however, the Jews began to emancipate . In 1829, the Jews demanded not only an extension of the letters of protection, but also general equality with the Christian fellow citizens.
With the constitution of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen of 1833, a first step in this direction was taken. There freedom of conscience was guaranteed for all religions. However, the Jews did not receive full civil rights and the right to stand for election to the state parliament. It was not until August 9, 1838, that the “Princely Law Regarding the Citizenship of the Israelite Faith Comrades” that brought about a fundamental reorganization. This law made the protective Jews into princely subjects. They were thus subject to all civil laws and had to comply with all duties and services like the Christian fellow citizens. However, it was only the constitution of the German Empire that brought it to the Paulskirche in Frankfurt was passed, of March 28, 1849 and the resulting princely ordinance of May 16, 1849, the Jews a complete equality to the Christian fellow citizens.
The takeover of the principalities of Hohenzollern-Hechingen and Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen from Prussia in 1850 was a step backwards in that the Christian religion became the state religion in the Prussian constitution and the Jews were therefore denied state offices. It was not until the law of the North German Confederation of 1869 that Jews and Christians were again equalized.
time of the nationalsocialism
On January 30, 1933, 193 Jews lived in Haigerloch, which corresponded to a percentage of 14% of the population. As in the whole of the German Reich , the Jews in Haigerloch were increasingly ousted from public life. The call for a boycott of Jewish shops of April 1, 1933 was largely ignored, but in later years this was also well received in Haigerloch. The increasing isolation of Jews in public life was evident, for example, in the fact that the two Jews Jakob Hohenemser and Louis Ullmann, who were elected in the Haigerloch municipal council, had to resign. Two members of the volunteer fire brigade were also forced out of it. On Memorial DayIn 1934, the Reich Association of Jewish Front Soldiers was banned for the first time . There was also increasing discrimination in other areas. There were arbitrary arrests of Jews and admissions to protective camps.
In 1935 there were 39 Jewish shops in Haigerloch, in 1938 there were 31, and 13 Jewish companies had to be closed that year. The Viehwirtschaftsverband (Viehwirtschaftsverband) banned Jewish cattle traders from the profession in spring 1938, and in September 1938 the traveling trade licenses were no longer valid. This pushed all Jewish cattle dealers out of the market.
In March 1938 the Jewish community lost its status as a public corporation. The Jewish elementary school was closed on October 1, 1939.
During the Reichspogromnacht from November 9th to 10th, 1938 the synagogue was not destroyed by fire, but several houses were badly devastated. The Jewish merchants and the teacher were arrested by order of the Hechingen district administrator Paul Schraermeyer, imprisoned in the Dachau concentration camp and held for weeks. 
From 1940 to August 1942 numerous Jews from Stuttgart and other larger Württemberg cities were resettled to Haigerloch; from here they were deported together with the Jews from Haigerloch . At least 84 Jews from Haigerloch perished in the Holocaust . After the end of the war, eleven deported Jews returned to Haigerloch. In 1993 a memorial stone was erected. At the end of 1999 the city of Haigerloch was able to acquire the former synagogue building; After several years of restoration work, it was inaugurated in November 2003 as the “House of Encounters”.  
- Website of the Haigerloch Jewish Community
- The Jewish community of Haigerloch near Alemannia Judaica
- Page no longer available , search in web archives: A small Hohenzollern town and the Shoah. ) The Jewish community of Haigerloch 1933 to 1942. On the Baden-Württemberg state education server (
- Statement by the Hechingen district administrator Paul Schraermeyer in the 1947 trial ( memento of the original from November 3, 2016 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice.
- Lexicon of the Jewish communities in the German-speaking area, entry Haigerloch
- History / background information from the state education server Baden-Württemberg .