Historical Background

A History of Lower Franconia

4th Century
The Celtics were the rulers

5th Century
The name Bavaria was coined after German tribes from Bohemia (Bajuvaren) who infiltrated the region.

6th Century
Regime:the Franks regime

7th Century
The advent of Christianity
794: Bavaria was annexed to the kingdom of Karl the Great

10th Century
981: after the destruction the Jews came to Bavaria. They lived in Passau, Furth, and Wurzburg and in Regensburg (which had a cultural center and a yeshiva and where the “Hassidim book” was written.

12th Century
1425-1180: Reign of the Duchy of Wittelsbach

13th Century
During the 13-16th centuries the Bavarian state was divided many times

16th Century
the German bastion of Catholicism
1541: the first Jews have settled in the Hassberge sub-district. They lived in 28 villages as “Protected Jews”. The duration of their stay in the area was determined by the allotted quota for each settlement and conditioned upon payment of “Protection Fees” (schutzgelds) to the bishops, heads of the estate etc..
1555: The Maroldsweisach village was established

17th Century
1618-1648: The 30 Years War: which started with the Catholic attempt to curtail the Protestants.
A third of the German people was killed in this war.
1618: the Westphalia Treaty was signed and the war was over.
The first Bavarian duke, Maximilian the First

18th Century
Bavarian Jews were the poorest, agrarian and more traditional than in any other region in Germany (Sharfman, 1995)
1720: two families in the village.
1740: The number of Jewish families in the village increased to 20
1762: The father of the Hecht dynasty – Itzik Anschel is born
1768: The number of Jewish families has decreased to 16.
1790 (11.10) Itzik Anschel received the name Hecht. Anschel had a “Letter of Protection” which allowed him to live in Maroldsweisach.

19th Century
1806: The king Max the First
1818: The Bavarian constitution was approved by the two houses of parliament, and included, among other things, a freedom of worship clause.
1848-1825: King Ludwig the First (Louis) nurtured Liberalism, Science and the Arts
1864-1848: King Maximilian the 2nd supported scientific research, industry and welfare
1864-1886: King Ludwig the 2nd
1833: Bavaria signed a joint customs treaty with Prussia
1864: Louis the 2nd. A revolution in the relations with Prussia following the modernization policy administered by Bismarck
1866: War between Austria and Prussia
1871-1870: The Bavarian king Louis the 2nd and the Prussian king William join forces in the war against France, due to Bismarck’s ambition to unite Germany under Prussian hegemony. The army of France was defeated and Napoleon taken prisoner.
1871: Bavaria is now part of the greater Germany
The traditional antagonism towards the Prussian, based on race and religion continues.
1893: The Social-Democratic party is in Parliament
Bavaria is the center of anti-Semitism in Germany;
1804: During the reign of Napoleon all limitations were removed, but in the Catholic regions many Bavarian opposed these new rules
1813: The Jews were prohibited from settling in places where Jews have not lived before. Limitations existed in places where Jews did live. This was the first year of Ludwig the 2nd Emancipation
1848: A new Emancipation movement followed by grassroots resistance, especially in Lower Franconia
1850: The implementation of the emancipation was postponed
1861: The Jews moved from the villages into the cities
1864: The Jewish-Orthodox seminary in Wurzburg (IBLA?) was established
1865: Grassroots resistance to the emancipation, which was suppressed by the army
1871: A new declaration of the emancipation, which has not in fact changed the attitude towards the Jews;
In the war of Germany against France 24 Jewish soldiers have fallen in battle (out of 165 who fought in the war)

20th Century
1912 King Ludwig
1913 King Louis the 3rd;
1918: First World War
1918 King of Bavaria was dethroned and the state becomes an independent republic
1923 Hilter’s “putch” in Munchen
1933: Bavaria ceases to be an independent state
1945: Bavaria taken by the American army
1918 the situation of the Jews has improved;
1919:: Kurt Eisner, a Jew who was head of the independent Social-Democratic party of Bavaria was murdered
1923 Bavaria has become a center for Nazism
1929: “Blood Libel” (alilat dam) in Manu near Hofheim – 17.3.1929
1933: Murals in a Jewish synagogue in Bechofen were destroyed;
1933 (15.9): A “boycott day” on the Jews, the SA troops assembled near the Jews
1935: Jews were forbidden to trade in cattle following the “Nierenberg rules”1
1938: (November) Jews were forced to break down the headstones in the Jewish cemetery in Kleinsteinach
1943 (17.6): the Jews of Wurzburg were deported to Tereizinstadt and from there sent to the Auschwitz to be exterminated.
1988 (June): Swastikas were painted in the Jewish cemetery Burgpreppach (the birthplace of Moshe Blum, who was married to our aunt Malka, sister of our great grandfather Samuel)

  1. On 15. 9.1935, the Nazi party conference convened in Nierenberg and the anti-Jewish Nierenberg Rules were drawn up. Racism has become state law. The Jews were denied any legal protection against anti-Semitism. The Emancipation was rescinded and the Jews have become “second degree citizens”. The constitutions have deprived the Jews of their citizenship and their privileges, turning them into subjects devoid of civil rights. They were also deprived of the right to legal council. 

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