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Czech Memorial Torah Scroll

Czech Memorial Torah Scroll

Saving a Legacy

Our Torah is identified as being from Klatovy in southwestern Czech Republic. It was among the more than 1,800 scrolls that were sent to the Central Jewish Museum in Prague, along with over 100,000 items of Judaica, following a letter sent by the Jewish curators with the agreement of the Nazis. After the war, the scrolls were transferred to a damp warehouse, which had been the 16th century Michle Synagogue. They were bought from the Czech government by Ralph Yablon in 1964 and sent to the Westminster Synagogue who set up the Memorial Scrolls Trust to repair and care for them. In 1976, the Confirmation Class of Temple Emanu-El and Rabbi Levi Olan made arrangements to take on the care and guardianship of the scroll. Our scroll is #726 and was written in 1880, according to the Czech Memorial Scrolls Trust. It has distinctive curlicues and crowns in many of the letters that are known as a “kabbalistic font” believed to date back to the 17th century.

For more information on the Memorial Scrolls Trust, click here.

Click each photo below to view the distinct details in the letters.