Jewish Museum Frankfurt
The Jewish Museum of the City of Frankfurt am Main covers the history and culture of the Jewish communities in Frankfurt
Frankfurt am Main , commonly known simply as Frankfurt, is the largest city in the German state of Hesse and the fifth-largest city in Germany, with a 2010 population of 688,249. The urban area had an estimated population of 2,300,000 in 2010...

 from the 12th to the 20th centuries. There is another branch of the museum, the Museum Judengasse, in a different part of town.

History and description

The museum opened on 9 November 1988, the 50th anniversary of the pogrom Kristallnacht
Kristallnacht, also referred to as the Night of Broken Glass, and also Reichskristallnacht, Pogromnacht, and Novemberpogrome, was a pogrom or series of attacks against Jews throughout Nazi Germany and parts of Austria on 9–10 November 1938.Jewish homes were ransacked, as were shops, towns and...

. It includes the Börne
Ludwig Börne
Karl Ludwig Börne was a German political writer and satirist.-Early life:Karl Ludwig Börne was born Loeb Baruch on May 6, 1786, at Frankfurt am Main, son of Jakob Baruch, a banker. His grandfather had been a government bureaucrat.-Education:Börne and his brothers were privately tutored by Jacob...

 Gallery, the Oskar
Oskar Schindler
Oskar Schindler was an ethnic German industrialist born in Moravia. He is credited with saving over 1,100 Jews during the Holocaust by employing them in his enamelware and ammunitions factories, which were located in what is now Poland and the Czech Republic respectively.He is the subject of the...

 and Emilie Schindler
Emilie Schindler
Emilie Schindler was a humanitarian who, with her husband Oskar Schindler, helped to save the lives of 1,200 to 1,700 Jews during World War II...

 Learning Centre, the Ludwig Meidner
Ludwig Meidner
Ludwig Meidner was a German expressionist painter and printmaker born in Bernstadt, Silesia. He was apprenticed to a stonemason, but the apprenticeship was not completed. He studied at the Royal School of Art in Breslau and, from 1906-07 at the Julien and Cormon Academies in Paris where he met...

 Archive, the Commission for Historical Research into the Jews of Frankfurt, a library, and a media centre.

The museum is housed in two classical villas on the Untermainkai, across the Main from the Schaumainkai
Schaumainkai is a street in central Frankfurt, Germany, running along the south side of the River Main. It includes a number of museums including the Städel, a leading art gallery...

. The villa at no. 14 was built for the banker Simon Moritz von Bethmann (of the Bethmann family
Bethmann family
The Bethmann family has been remarkable for the high proportion of its males who succeeded at mercantile or financial endeavors. This family trait began in medieval northern Germany and continued with the Bethmann bank which Johann Philipp Bethmann and Simon Moritz Bethmann founded in 1748 and...

), and the one at no. 15 for Joseph Isaak Speyer. No. 14 was acquired by Mayer Carl von Rothschild (of the Rothschild family
Rothschild family
The Rothschild family , known as The House of Rothschild, or more simply as the Rothschilds, is a Jewish-German family that established European banking and finance houses starting in the late 18th century...

) in 1846, and became known as the Rothschild Palace. Both buildings were acquired by the city of Frankfurt in 1928. After the Second World War they served as the main site of the municipal and university library, and later as an outpost of the Historical Museum
Historical museum, Frankfurt
The Historical Museum in Frankfurt am Main was founded in 1878, and includes cultural and historical objects relating to the city's history...


The permanent exhibition displays works by Ludwig Meidner
Ludwig Meidner
Ludwig Meidner was a German expressionist painter and printmaker born in Bernstadt, Silesia. He was apprenticed to a stonemason, but the apprenticeship was not completed. He studied at the Royal School of Art in Breslau and, from 1906-07 at the Julien and Cormon Academies in Paris where he met...

 and Moritz Daniel Oppenheim
Moritz Daniel Oppenheim
Moritz Daniel Oppenheim was a German painter who is often regarded as the first Jewish painter of the modern era. His work was informed by his cultural and religious roots at a time when many of his German Jewish contemporaries chose to convert...

, among others, as well as cultural artefacts from synagogue
A synagogue is a Jewish house of prayer. This use of the Greek term synagogue originates in the Septuagint where it sometimes translates the Hebrew word for assembly, kahal...

s and Jewish homes. The Ludwig Meidner Archive includes the estate of the painter Henry Gowa
Henry Gowa
Henry Gowa was a German painter and stage designer.-Life:Gowa was born Hermann Gowa in Hamburg. After studying in Munich he established himself as a stage designer, and was active in Munich, Leipzig and Frankfurt...

. Other artists in the museum's collection include Eduard Bendemann
Eduard Bendemann
Eduard Julius Friedrich Bendemann was a German painter.-Biography:Bendemann was born in Berlin. His father, Anton Heinrich Bendemann, was a Jewish banker. His mother, Fanny Eleonore Bendemann née von Halle, was a daughter of the Jewish banker Joel Samuel von Halle...

 and Jacob Steinhardt
Jacob Steinhardt
Jacob Steinhardt was an Israeli painter and woodcut artist.-Biography:Jacob Steinhardt was born in Żerków, Germany . He attended the School of Art in Berlin in 1906, then studied painting with Louis Corinth and engraving with Hermann Struck in 1907...


Museum Judengasse

The Museum Judengasse, located at Börneplatz, was built on the foundations of several houses in the Judengasse
Frankfurter Judengasse
The Frankfurter Judengasse was the Jewish ghetto of Frankfurt and one of the earliest ghettos in Germany. It existed from 1462 until 1796 and was home to Germany's largest Jewish community in early modern times....

 (the Jewish ghetto
A ghetto is a section of a city predominantly occupied by a group who live there, especially because of social, economic, or legal issues.The term was originally used in Venice to describe the area where Jews were compelled to live. The term now refers to an overcrowded urban area often associated...

, dating from 1462) that had been excavated in 1987. The museum documents the history of the Judengasse up to its abolition in 1796. Remnants from the walls of the Börneplatz synagogue are integrated into the museum.

To commemorate the 650th anniversary of the Golden Bull of 1356
Golden Bull of 1356
The Golden Bull of 1356 was a decree issued by the Reichstag assembly in Nuremberg headed by the Luxembourg Emperor Charles IV that fixed, for a period of more than four hundred years, important aspects of the constitutional structure of the Holy Roman Empire...

, four museums in Frankfurt organised an exhibition called Die Kaisermacher ("The Emperor-Makers") from 2006 to 2007. The Museum Judengasse contributed archaeological findings, documenting in particular the role played by the Jews of Frankfurt as the Emperor's servi camerae regis
Servi camerae regis
Servi camerae regis was the status of the Jews in Christian Europe in the Middle Ages. The ruler had the right to tax them for the benefit of his treasury , but at the same time he had a duty to protect them when they were in danger from others...


External links

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