Sunday, August 10, 2008

New and Newish Websites on Czech Jewish Heritage

My friend David Kraus has put up a new web site on Jewish heritage in the Czech Republic. It's called "Vanished Tempels" and so far includes images takes from old postcards of pre-WW2 synagogues in Bohemia and Moravia.

It also includes a few other types of old postcards with Jewish themes and -- interestingly -- photos of some of the architects of synagogues, including Wilhelm Stiassny, one of the great designers of Moorish-style synagogues in central Europe, among them the Jubilee synagogue in Prague and the synagogue in Malacky, Slovakia, not far from Bratislava. (See my own 2006 picture of Malacky synagogue, now an art school and gallery, below)

David's site provides a link to an even bigger data base of old postcards on Jewish heritage around Europe, 1890-1930 So far, there are images of synagogues from about a score of countries, plus some other Judaica, including postcards of Jewish sporting clubs and events.

David's site also includes links to several other web sites with resources on currently existing Czech Jewish heritage. One is a database of information on current synagogue buildings in the Czech Republic, and another has information on Jewish cemeteries in the Czech Republic.

Both sites were put up by Jitka Oltova. Both are in Czech, but there are lots of pictures. (Below is a slide show of my own photos from several Jewish cemeteries in the Czech Republic.)

Another site David links to is also pretty fascinating. Called "Vanished Places After 1945" it is a data base, in Czech and German, with lots of articles and pictures, of destroyed built heritage, including several dozen synagogues.

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