Memorabilia and Lost

Today, memorabilia from Jewish families constitutes the core of the Jewish Museum’s artifacts collection and not, regrettably, the major collection of ceremonial objects the Jewish community in Hohenems had owned until 1938. Among the community’s property were precious Torah scrolls, Torah decorations, and textiles. Over 400 Torah binders (wimpels) alone were kept in the Hohenems synagogue. Following the complete confiscation of the community’s property in the days following the November Pogroms, there is nothing left of the entire holdings. The silver and other metal objects were likely melted down and transferred to the Reich. At that point in time, some of the Torah scrolls had already been moved to Innsbruck; there are no traces left of them either.
Thus, today’s collection consists for the most part of donations and loans from private individuals from the region and, most notably, from descendants of Jewish Hohenems families. These are mostly everyday objects that remember individual people or social, cultural, political and familial events and experiences.
Time and again, particular objects are newly incorporated into the museum’s permanent exhibition.