The exhibition Jews in Hamburg presents the history of Jewish people in Hamburg during the past 400 years: the difficult period around 1600, the arduous process of emancipation until legal equality was achieved in the late 19th century, the golden age during the Weimar Republic, the era of fascist persecution and genocide and the reestablishment of the Jewish community after 1945.

Jewish ceremonies on the occasion of birth, marriage and death and at Bar and Bat Mizwa are explained. Visitors can enter the reconstruction of the interior of a synagogue as well as the home of a prosperous Jewish family around the turn of the last century.

The role of Jews, their integration and their discrimination in politics, business, science and art as well as their religion and everyday life are presented, as are the persecution and annihilation of Jews under the NS regime.

The selected exhibits illustrate the overseas trade of the 17th century, Hebrew book printing, the life of the religious community and the achievements of prominent Jews in Hamburg. They underscore the importance Jews continue to have for life in Hamburg and to the city’s development to this day. They also show the great loss brought about by the brutal destruction of Jewish life under the National Socialists.