32571 in the past.

Placed before.

After the war, Jewish life in Deventer blossomed anew. The synagogue - the interior of which had been destroyed in 1941 - was repaired in 1945. In 1948, the Jewish populations of Raalte and Holten was merged into the Deventer community. In 1952, a new synagogue was consecrated on the Lange Bisschopstraat. That synagogue served the community until 1984. By then the activities of the Deventer community had been dramatically curtailed, in part due to emigration to Israel, and, in 1987, the synagogue was sold. A moment to the murdered Jews of Deventer that had stood in the synagogue was moved to Deventer's city hall. In 1985, a monument in memory of Dutch Jewish writer Etty Hillesum was installed on the bank of the river IJsel. A monument at the corner of the Papenstraat and Ankersteeg commemorates the murdered Jews of the Netherlands.

Today, all of Deventer's former synagogues have been given new uses. The former synagogue on the Golstraat housed a Reformed church until 2009. Since May 2010 a Jewish group has its synagogue services in the building. Since 1996, the former synagogue and Jewish school on the Roggestraat has housed the Etty Hillesum Centre. The Centre contains a permanent exhibition tracing the history of Jewish life in Deventer. The old Jewish cemetery on the Lange Rij was cleared in 1960 and the remains of the buried re-interred in the cemetery on the Diepenveenseweg. A replica of the memorial monument that stands in the city hall was placed in the cemetery in 1993. The cemetery's house for the ritual cleaning of the dead was restored in 1995.

In 1290 the Jews were banned from England and from Germany, many Jews went Eastwards. Some went to the West, to Brabant, Gelderland and Luxemburg. They were banned from France in 1306 and some settled in the North. During the middle ages, the church determined attitudes towards the Jews throughout Europe. Because Jews were prevented from joining professional groups they mostly went into trade and "credit economics". Nevertheless, many Jews became highly respected because of the great value they attached to study and their knowledge of languages, their international contacts and their traditions in respect to hygiene. This also again stirred up hate and fear.

Notorious periods were those of the 'black death" in the 14th century, quite early several Jewish communities developed in Overijssel, which disappeared again after the heaviest outbreak of the "Black Death" (1349-1352). This terrible bubonic plague epidemic threatened all of Europe and deluded many people into thinking that the Jews had poisoned the sources of water. The result was the massive murder of Jews by the 'ghesel of cruusbroeders' .
The names of persons and communities massacred were entered in the memorial books, the so-called Memorbucher. In Das Martyrologium des Nurnberger Memorbuches, Deventer was mentioned among others, as a place where martyrs had fallen. In Deventer plague raged heavily and when on Sunday, September 28th, 1349 a group of flagellants from Holland, Utrecht and Gelderland, amongst them friends of the bishop, came into town, the fate of the Jewish community in Deventer was sealed.

The position of the Jews during that period is not unequivocal to all historians. Jac. Zwarts reports that the Deventer Jew Conradus de Judia lost a quarter of his parcel of agricultural land to the son of a priest who already had three-quarters of his property. It did not make any difference to the fate of the Jews, as Conradus de Judia and his fellow townsmen were murdered. About fifty confessions of debt (IOU's) have been preserved in which Godschalk van Recklinghausen 'ende sinne gheselscap Juden' ('and his fellow Jews'), being Godschalk, his daughter Hanna and some others played a very important part in money lending. Many aristocrats had to make use of the Jewish moneylenders among others to enable them to afford their conquests. These moneylenders, therefore, received some protection. Undoubtedly the death of these moneylenders was not disagreeable to the many debtors. This tragic fact is obvious from what a citizen from Zwolle wrote: 'In the year 1349, at the end of August, the Jews of Zwolle were killed and immediately burnt - out of the love for God.

In 1436 Johan de Joode (“the Jew”) visited Deventer and as representative of the Count of Gelderland, he wanted to convince the people of Deventer to declare the gold and silver coins minted in Arnhem to be legal tender. Even in the sixteenth century the number of Jews in Overijssel remained small. In 1545 several Jews asked the municipality of Deventer for permission ' to live in Deventer and to exercise their trades there'. This request was, however, not granted. Nevertheless, there was need of a moneylender, because a year later the city management gave such permission to a Lombard. During the time of Charles V and Alva quite a lot of Jews moved to Germany. Several Jews dispelled from Gelre, applied for settlement in Deventer. This request was rejected in 1585. The attitude towards Jews of Deventer as well as that of other towns were not benevolent.

Even after the Reformation, Deventer remained less accessible to Jews. In 1654 the Sworn-in Municipality of Deventer turned out to be afraid of the Jewish religion. The Jews were not allowed to live in Deventer, but they could run their businesses there, although not without difficulties. In 1650 the Sworn-in Municipality of Deventer requested the Aldermen and Committee to 'restrict Jews from trading along streets (except for lime and lemons). After all, in 1656 the Municipality asks them: 'that all Jews without distinction be restricted from trading in the commercial part of the town. Thus, under the heading of oranges and lemons, all kinds of trades are being done, to a great disadvantage of the inhabitants'. The Aldermen and Committee members granted this request. In February 1658 the votes of the Sworn-in Municipality was equally divided about the decision to uphold the prohibition that 'no Jews can trade in this town'.

The Aldermen and Committee members, who had to decide(d) about this issue, now concluded that Jews were now permitted to sell 'oranges and lemons' for the benefit and service of everybody. Afterwards, no opposition was noted against this trade and thus one can conclude that the tradesmen selling their wares in Deventer, dealt solely in citrus fruit. During almost the entire 18th century the city management of Deventer did not allow Jews to settle there. The slogan Freedom, Equality and Brotherhood also had consequences for the Dutch society. The National Assembly in The Netherlands accepted on September 2nd, 1796 the Emancipation Decree in which Jews also received citizen's rights. This concerned all citizens of the Batavian Republic. It was considered a blessing for the Jews who wanted to settle in Deventer.

A sudden change in attitude towards the Jews was not really felt, though. Nevertheless, King Louis Napoleon made sincere attempts to implement equality in everyday life for the Jews. In 1808 he organized a committee consisting of nine members, the Supreme Consistory, which would have complete supervision of all Ashkenazi communities in the kingdom, with Mr. Jonas Daniel Meijer as chairman. The Upper Consistory assisted the King in establishing a corps of Jewish soldiers, took the initiative for a translation of the Bible in Dutch and diligently worked to abolish the differences still present between Jews and Christians. Louis Napoleon stipulated that the weekly markets held on Saturdays should be moved to other days so that the Jews could keep their Sabbath. During a tour, which the king made in 1809, he received Jewish delegates and he also visited Deventer.
Before 1795 the Jewish communities were managed by managers, by nature a powerful position. The Supreme Consistory took care that local abuses were improved and that the election of parnassian (managers) became centralized. The long-lasting autonomy of the Jewish communities came to an end. Zwolle, which already had had a prosperous Jewish life with a Rabbi, a synagogue and a cemetery before 1795, was granted the status of the consistorial church for Overijssel. The young community of Deventer tried to reverse this decision, saying that it was the centre of a region where about 1500 Jews lived and emphasizing the great tolerance that the Municipality of Deventer had shown with respect to the Jews since 1795.

However, the Supreme Consistory decided that the consistorial synagogue would be established in Zwolle because that town was the capital of the province, it had the highest number of Jews (355) and because a Chief Rabbi had been living there for many years. It is most likely that Jews established themselves in this city very soon after the arrival of the French. In June 1796 Jacob Mozes and his three sons requested the city council to allow them the right to live there as well as the right of citizenship. The request of Jacob Mozes and his sons to be accepted as citizens were granted by the city council on July 5th 1796. This council granted the Jews the same rights that the town of Zwolle had granted to its Jewish inhabitants 175 years before. From that time onwards more, Jews settled in Deventer so that their number increased over a short period of time. In 1809 their number amounted already to 173, composed of about 20 families with numerous children. The oldest minutes book of the Jewish community dates from the year five thousand five hundred fifty-eight since the creation of the world (= 1797).

The heads of the families that made up this first group of Deventer Jews formulated a set of rules, which would serve -hopefully-the fast-growing group of Jews in Deventer. In 1798 the parnassian of the Jewish community' in Deventer notified the City Council that 'they had bought a yard and house situated near the Brink at the corner of the Golstraat, with the intention to transform this into a synagogue and to hold their religious services'. The City Council agreed to their plan of transforming these premises into a church and to exempt them from paying municipal taxes. Jewish life developed fast. New members were admitted.
On April 10th 1798, the Jewish date 23 Nissan 5588-558 lefak Mr. Ansj Katz was appointed shamash. He received 7 guilders as salary until Succoth. A cashier was also appointed. All family heads were obliged to buy bread and milk from the cashier for which he received 2 pennies from each family for supplying milk and half a penny for challoth and bread.
In addition each family had to invite the cashier for a Shabbath meal, proceeding according to a certain sequence decided upon. The obligated purchases were controlled by the parnassim. If people were caught breaking this rule by buying nevertheless from other bakers, one could be fined the amount of 3 guilders.

It was not obligatory for everyone to participate in the cost of the meal tickets issued by the community for passing strangers. On 9 Shewat 5560 (February 4th, 1800) artefacts, which belonged to several members and which were used during ceremonial services, were recorded in the minute books. Joel, son of Mozes donated a Tora scroll belonging to him, to the synagogue. Jacob, son of Joel Segal also donated a Tora scroll, and so did Menachem, son of Jona. The society Gemilas Chasodiem donated a Tora scroll to the synagogue on condition that it should be for the congregation, God preserves her, a proper present. Written at the request of the parnasim and managers of the community, God preserve her, here in Deventer. And that seems to be failing.



Other pages:

This is the text-only version of this page. Click here to see this page with graphics.
Edit this page | Manage website
Make Your Own Website: 2-Minute-Website.com