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American Consul Samuel Honaker's Description of Anti-Semitic Persecution and Kristallnacht and its Aftereffects in the Stuttgart Region (November 12 and November 15, 1938)

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Burning of Synagogues.

Early on the morning of November 10th practically every synagogue – at least twelve in number – in Württemberg, Baden and Hohenzollern was set on fire by well disciplined and apparently well equipped young men in civilian clothes. The procedure was practically the same in all cities of this district, namely, Stuttgart, Karlsruhe, Freiburg, Heidelberg, Heilbronn, et cetera. The doors of the synagogues were forced open. Certain sections of the building and furnishings were drenched with petrol and set on fire. Bibles, prayer books, and other sacred things were thrown into the flames. Then the local fire brigades were notified. In Stuttgart, the city officials ordered the fire brigade to save the archives and other written material having a bearing on vital statistics. Otherwise, the fire brigades confined their activities to preventing the flames from spreading. In a few hours the synagogues were, in general, heaps of smoking ruins.

Devastation of Jewish Shops.

Practically all the Jewish shops in the Stuttgart consular district are reported to have been attacked, ransacked, and devastated. These actions were carried out by young men and half-grown boys. It was easy to recognize under the civilian clothes of the former trained and disciplined S.A. or S.S. men, while in the case of the latter the Hitler Youth uniform was evident in some instances. The young men set about their task in most cases quietly and efficiently. They first smashed windows, destroyed furnishings, and then began to throw merchandise into the street. Throughout these actions the police looked on, either smilingly or unconcernedly.

Most of the Jewish shops in Stuttgart are situated in the main business section of the city. On the Königsstrasse, the principal business street, no looting was observed, but in the side streets looting was noticed in a number of cases. In front of one shop people were seen trying on shoes which had been thrown into the street. Before the Café Heimann was demolished, people helped themselves to cake and so forth.

The following is a list of Jewish shops in Stuttgart which were badly damaged:

Name of Firm Address Principal Business
Bamberger & Hertz 2 Poststrasse Clothing
Bloch 1 Rotbühlstrasse Restaurant
Jacobs 32 Hauptstätterstrasse Radios
Katz 6 Leonhardsplatz Shoes
Robert 8 Marktstrasse Clothing
Salberg 56 Königstrasse Photographer
Scheinmann 45 Königstrasse Shoes
Speier 58 Königstrasse Shoes
Speier 4 Marktplatz Shoes
Tanne 6 Tübingerstrasse Department store
Ika 21 Königstrasse Lingerie

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