Schmieheim

General information: First Jewish presence: 1624; peak Jewish population: 580 in 1864; Jewish population in 1933: 120
Summary: Schmieheim’s regional Jewish cemetery, consecrated in 1682, became the largest in South Baden. Although the town’s Jewish community had established a synagogue in 1720, a new one was opened on Schlossstrasse in 1814: it accommodated 62 men, and was renovated in 1846, 1875 and 1910. By 1855, 120 students attended Schmieheim’s Jewish school (opened in the 1830s and closed in 1876). In 1933, a teacher from Kuppenheim instructed the town’s Jewish schoolchildren. A Jewish women’s association was active in Schmieheim that year. On Pogrom Night, Jewish homes were vandalized, a Jew was assaulted and the synagogue’s interior was demolished. The mayor not only prevented the synagogue building being burned down, but arranged for the protection of Jewish businesses. Twenty-eight men, however, were sent to Dachau. Thirty-two local Jews emigrated, 61 relocated in Germany, 17 died in the town and 14 were deported to Gurs on October 22, 1940. Eight elderly Jews remained after the deportations: one died in the town, and the others were deported to the East from different locations in 1941/1942. At least 45 Schmieheim Jews died in the Shoah. In 2001, a geniza (storeroom for holy books) was found in the residential building now standing on the former synagogue site. The cemetery was renovated in 1959.
Author / Sources: Heike Zaun Goshen
Sources: AH, AJ, EJL, HU, PK BW
www.kippenheim.de
Located in: Baden-Wuerttemberg