“Rubble Stones” and “Square of mutual respect”
The memorial wall at the Jewish Cemetery in Volkmarsen and the
“Square of mutual respect
Back in 1938 you could find a number of 118 tombs and headstones on the Jewish Cemetery of Volkmarsen.
This cemetery was destroyed by national socialist offenders, all headstones were smashed and to some extend used to fasten ways. After the war the remains of the destroyed headstones were grubbed out and collected by an official solution.
With this ruins a small memorial place was built in the back of the cemetery – with almost no experience to passer-bys.
On the memorial table that was built at that time you could not find any advice to the destiny of the Jewish inhabitants from Volkmarse.
After a long time of preparation the society “Flashback-Against oblivion”, by special initiative of Ernst and Brigitte Klein, has dealt with the complete recreation of the entrance area at the Jewish cemetery.
Straight at a highly frequented cycle- and footpath, the main access way to school and at a highly used highway an 18 meters long wall was built to remember to the murdered Jewish inhabitants of the city.
The blond sandstones that were used to build the wall all come from Poland as a symbolic bridge to the extermination camps in Poland, where the Jews from Volkmarsen were murdered.
Inside the stonework there were different rubble stones dispelled and big apparent holes developed. (on motivation of the artist Dr. Horst Hoheisel from Kassel)
These highly visible holes remember to the circumstance that the victims were arbitrarily ripped out of their lives just because they were Jews.
The failing stones inside the stonework are affixed on the capstone in irregular distance to each other to abut to the Jewish rite to put stones on the tombs of the decedent.
The 22 tables of stainless steel that were fixed at the wall remember to the murdered inhabitants.
Two large tables on piers at the entrance areas contain more explanations about the history of the Jewish community and the incidents during the national socialist time.
Directly in front of the wall a 100 square metres great, even of sandstones paved place was made. On a suggestion of Ernst Klein this place in the centre of the city was called
“Square of mutual respect”
and will become a dignified meeting place to the society “Flashback-against oblivion” for the regular commemoration ceremony on the 9th of November and the 27th of January.
The whole construction was planned and built by the society in complimentary work and mainly financed by contributions and voluntary efficiency. It was given to the publicity on the 25th May 2005 under attendance of numerously citizens. The municipal authority encouraged the project among other things with the building of the fundament.
In briefest time the new produced place with its special symbolic had become a vivid place of examination with a so far displaced part of the history of the city.
The personal destiny of the murdered people was kept in memory and placed in the highly visible focus of the citizens of Volkmarsen. Daily you can see people from every age class who stop at the wall and read the memorial tables intently.
The project was highly attended by the press and gives cause to discussions among the population. On the regular occurred guided tours through the city the “Square of mutual respect” had become a centre point very fast. Visitor groups and school classes from the whole region inform themselves on a demonstrative way about the extensive unknown incidents of our younger history.
The experiences after the few months from the completion of the wall have shown that this construction will contribute people in publicity to think and discuss about the consequences of racial hatred, Anti-Semitism and social exclusion of minorities.
In memoriam of the jewish citizens of Volkmarsen
Their suffering began among us
The members of the association
Rückblende Gegen das Vergessen e.V., Volkmarsen
In the time period between 1933 and 1942 the for centuries existing jewish community in Volkmarsen was completely extinguished due to forced emigration or homicide of their