France/German Empire > Strasbourg: New Synagogue of Strasbourg (Synagogue of Quai Kleber) inauguration medal, 1898; struck in bronze; designed/manufactured by P.H.Fec; size: 50.5mm; weight: 51.4g.
Obverse depicts a detailed image of the Synagogue building with legend in German above, "Neue Synagoge in Strassburg", the architect's name "Prof. Levy Arch." in exergue and the maker's mark "P.H.Fec." at lower-left between the trees.
On reverse a partial wreath device and shining star with legend in German below, "Zur Erinnerung an die Einweihung 21 Eloul 5658 [the Hebrew date] 8. September 1898" and maker's initials ("P.H.") at edge.
The Synagogue at Quai Kleber (Kleber Wharf) replaced an earlier one built in 1836 on Saint Helene street of the city owing to the rapid growth of the city's Jewish community. A reknowned German Jewish architect, Professor Ludwig Levy from Karlsruhe, submitted the proposed design in neo-Romanesque style, and the firm of "Holzmann and Co." understook the construction.
The cornerstone was laid in April 1896 and both Professor Levy and the Chief Rabbi (formerly of the city of Metz) Isaac Weil, gave speeches. On 8 September 1898 a double ceremony took place, in which the congregation held a solemn farewell ceremony at the old Synagogue and later that day inaugurated the new Synagogue.
The Synagogue existed until 1940, when it was first occupied by the conquering German army and then burned down by Hitler Youth and the SA that September. Professor Levy designed several Synagogues (as well as Churches) in Germany and France though most were destroyed by the Germans during Kristallnacht in 1938. The maker of the medal is not known and not listed in Forrer's comprehensive dictionary.
מילות מפתח: מדליה מדליות בתי כנסת כנסיות יהודיות יודאיקה יודאיכה צרפת גרמניה