Polska / zachodniopomorskie
|Synagogues, prayer houses and others||Cemeteries||Places of martyrology||Judaica in museums||Andere|
|Province:||zachodniopomorskie / inne (before 1939)|
|County:||choszczeński / choszczeński (before 1939)|
|Community:||Drawno / Drawno (before 1939)|
|Other names:||Neuwedell [j.niemiecki]|
The story of Jewish settlement in Drawno (Neuwedell) goes back to the seventeenth century. Initially it concerned only individual persons. In 1717, among the 900 inhabitants of Drawno, only 2 were Jewish: Kaspar Arendt and Jakub Izaak.
Before a pharmacy was open, medicine trading in Drawno was carried out by Jews and conducted in the streets. In time Jews were given permission to build houses and to perform music for money. For decades they were considered the worst and the lowest social class. They lived concentrated in a kehilla and occupied houses and streets specified by the local government where they traditionally practiced artisanship and trade.
Jews did not acquire full citizenship until the second half of the nineteenth century. In 1850 there were seven schools in Drawno and one of them was Jewish. The first synagogue was built in 1852; at that time 123 Jews lived in the town. In 1880 a brick synagogue was built. By 1885 Drawno had 2,951 inhabitants, including 11 Catholics and 101 Jews.
At the turn of the twentieth century, Drawno Jews were granted full equality with the other town citizens. In 1905 from 2,791 inhabitants only 66 were Jewish. In the years 1914-1918 Jews fought in the Great War just like their German neighbours. They were decorated for valour and bravery – Max Jacobi, dr Siegfried Casparius. They were also serving as officers (Casparius) and even died for their German Vaterland (homeland). For example, Martin Casparius died on March 8th 1915 and Alfred Nathan on June 30th 1916. The 1920s crises of unemployment, inflation, and the Nazis’ rise to power all resulted in the reduction of Drawno's Jewish population.
When Hitler came to power, Jewish oppression began in Drawno. In this initial period the mayor, Conrad Müller, a member of the NSDAP, was most active in anti-Jewish. However, he left the town in 1935. The following also brought disgrace upon themselves: local police officer Fritz Kaldenbach, butcher Otto Weber, Willi Staege, and Walter Kopplin. They were spiritually supported by the local pastor and SA Sturmführer J. Rohr, who until the Röhm ‘coup’ was an influential figure in the town (according to K. Herrmann).
Drawno’s Jews then started to experience raids by the ‘brown gentlemen’. These were SS and SA officers acting as police assistants. The fi