Eitelbergergasse 22 (Synagogue association) - 13th district Hietzing

Synagogue built in: 1924-1926
Last rabbi: Prof. Dr. Moses Levin
Pogrom Night: Destroyed
Summary: In 1910 the Tempelverein Hietzing had already decided on a new synagogue, since the rented premises they had occupied since 1904, at 132 Penzingstrasse, had grown too small. At that time there were 3224 Jews in Hietzing. The original plan to build in the Onno-Klop-Gasse could not be carried out and the only fully detached synagogue built in the interwar years was finally erected in 1924. Designed by architect Arthur Gruenberger, the building at 22 Eitelbergergasse , at the corner of 7 NeueWelt-gasse , was externally a simple cube, and the interior also starkly designed. The roof was furnished with crenulated battlements recalling the fortress synagogues of the 17th century.

Only 14 years after the consecration service, the synagogue was destroyed by the 89th division of the S.S. on the morning of November 10,, 1938. By 9:35 the building had already burned down. Since 1990 a memorial plaque commmemorates the site.

The Hietzing comprehensive school, with the guidance of Robert Streibel, ran an exemplary project in 1999 entitled “A Forgotten Life - Jews in Hietzing“ and conducted interviews with Jewish and non-Jewish former residents about their childhood and impressive extracts from the internet on Jewish life in the area after the Anschluss. The engineer Herbert Reisner tells of the sudden change in the behavior of former neighbors towards them and the traumatic effect it had on that generation. The historian Prof. Robert Schwartz tells of his brother’s bar mitzvah “celebration” after the Anschluss. “We made our way in single file, so as not to draw attention to ourselves, to the Eitelbergergasse Tempel where the ceremony was to take place. My poor brother just about managed to say his piece, there were hardly ten adults in the place, really hardly a happy occasion, especially when compared with my own which had taken place in happier, normal times. There was a feeling of impending doom which in fact came to pass in November when this beautiful Temple was burned down”.

Regarding the expulsion of Jews from their homes and their transfer, mainly to the 2nd district where they were herded together in ghetto like conditions, a non-Jewish neighbor, Gertrud Kerschenbauer, recalled the arrival from the 13th district. She remembered her mother sending her daily to the newcomers with a basket of food.
Sources: - Genée, Pierre, Wiener Synagogen 1825-1938, Wien, 1987
- Dokumentationsarchiv des österreichischen Widerstandes (Hg.), Gedenken und Mahnen in Wien 1934-1945. Gedenkstätten zu Widerstand und Verfolgung, Exil, Befreiung, Wien 1998
- Safrian, Hans, Witek, Hans, “Und keiner war dabei. Dokumente des alltäglichen Antisemitismus in Wien 1938“, Wien 2008
- Volkshochschule Hietzing: http://www.vhs-hietzing.at/seiten/4projekte/judenih/3gelebt.html
Located in: Vienna