General information: First Jewish presence: 1348; peak Jewish population: 135 in 1900; Jewish population in 1933: 56
Summary: The Jewish community of Kamen was established in 1770, when a small synagogue was built on Kamenstrasse; this synagogue was rebuilt in 1830. In order to accommodate the growing Jewish population, the community inaugurated a new synagogue on An den Guenenstrasse in 1901. Kamen’s Jewish elementary school, built next to the old synagogue in 1850, closed in 1912 as a result of declining enrollment numbers. After July 1933, as a direct result of the anti-Jewish boycott, many local Jews left Kamen. Members of the Nazi party desecrated the synagogue in 1934. The majority of local Jews had left the town before Pogrom Night, most of them for other towns in Germany. In 1938, the synagogue site was sold to the municipality at a bargain price, after which the building was destroyed. The few remaining Jews were deported in 1941; 39 local Jews perished in the Shoah. In 1978, a memorial tablet was unveiled at the former synagogue site.
Author / Sources: Harold Slutzkin
Sources: LJG, SG-NRW