Call For Donations
The Paul Lazarus Foundation, founded October 2010, is still very young . The foundation has less than € 8.000,00 in its account, although its material assets [documents, photographs etc.] have been valued by the University of Mainz at approximately € 135.000,00. Generous donations are needed to maintain and develop this treasure.
Why should you donate?
Wiesbaden’s registration and land registry offices were bombed during World War II and their records destroyed. Today Wiesbaden is the only state capital in Germany without a comprehensive Jewish historiography. The Paul Lazarus Foundation has devoted itself to filling this gap.
Although Wiesbaden’s Jewish community is less well-known than the famous communities of the Shum-cities, it is nevertheless important:
- Wiesbaden’s Jewish community was very heterogeneous, since its very small nucleus competed with many very old surrounding rural Jewish communities. After 1806 these rural communities were gradually incorporated into Wiesbaden. The competition between different Jewish lifestyles created much friction, but was also fruitful. Dr. Abraham Geiger –Wiesbaden’s rabbi from 1832 till 1838 – founded the Jewish Reform movement in Germany. Two very important conferences of Reform rabbis were held in Wiesbaden.
- The installation of Dr. Leon Kahn as Wiesbaden’s orthodox rabbi provided a prominent alternative to the city’s growing liberal Jewish religious community. It was because of Dr. Kahn that the first German “altisraelitische Austrittsgemeinde” (independent neo-orthodox Jewish community) was founded in Wiesbaden in 1878, following a protracted legal dispute in Prussian courts based on the Austritts-law enacted by the German Reichstag in July, 1876.
- The development of Wiesbaden as an internationally known spa city had important consequences for its Jewish community. Wiesbaden’s Jewish population grew from 13 families in 1806 to about 600 in 1896, when Wiesbaden’s famous Jewish Liberal Synagogue was consecrated, finally to more than 3.000 in 1935.
A number of research projects on Jewish life in Wiesbaden could be started immediately (see more here) if the Paul Lazarus Foundation had the means to undertake them. The more people join our Circle of Friends, the more activities could be carried out. Since the Circle of Friend was founded in January, 2012, about € 3.500,00 has been collected. We are extremely grateful for their efforts, and will be happy to welcome additional supporters. Contributions are tax deductible
Bank account: coming soon…