Berlin: New Synagogue
The New Synagogue was erected in 1866, symbolizing the growing size and self-confidence of the Jewish community at the time. The New Synagogue quickly became the most famous Jewish house of worship throughout Germany - especially for its significant Neo-Moorish architecture crowned by a parly gilded dome.
During the November Pogrom (November 9, 1938), the New Synagogue was set ablaze. Wilhelm Krützfeld, a Prussian police officer, stopped the arsonists and alerted the fire department, citing the building's status as an officially protected monument. It was therefore saved from complete destruction and renovated for service by the Jewish community. In November 1943, the New Synagogue was heavily damaged by allied air attacks.
Since 1995, the reconstructed front parts of the building house Centrum Judaicum, a Jewish museum and center for culture and documentation with regular public events and changing exhibitions. Centrum Judaicum is a project partner of Germany Close Up, an organization which invites American Jews to experience today's Germany.