The Jews of Königsberg at the turn of the 20th century

The eyewitness says goodbye and a new era will soon begin.


“In 1905/06, I built in Amalienau, Goethestrasse 8 (today ul. Pushkina), the villa my children were familiar with, whose landscaping and construction costs Franny paid […]. She sold this villa in 1918 and acquired with it the Lawsker Alle 14, where we live today.”

Aron Liebeck wrote this in 1928. A final image shows him with his wife Franziska (nee Rosenbaum) in 1931. Both of the last two houses in which Aron Liebeck lived still stand today in
Kaliningrad. The daughters and sons of Liebeck, who for the most part studied at a university, had to emigrate from Germany in the 1930s. That same fate was shared by most of the Königsberg
Jews, whom one sees as children in the photographs. But that is a topic for another exhibit.

Villa Lawsker Allee

118. Villa on Lawsker Allee 14
[today Prospekt Pobedy]

Aron Liebeck and wife

116. Aron and Franziska Liebeck 1931

Villa Gpethestrasse

117. Villa on Goethestr. 8
[today ul. Pushkina]

The preface at the end: 

In 2018 the synagoge was reconstructed. Today there is the question as to who these Jews were who lived in Königsberg around the turn of the century when the synagogue on Lindenstrasse was being built the first time: What was their life like? What kinds of things did they do? How did they think of themselves? The Jewish society at that time was quite heterogeneous. Many families came from the most different of places and regions. And that is no different today.

The “Association of Jews in East Prussia”, which initiated and organized this exhibit, set for itself the goals, firstly, of bringing current residents closer to the histories of the Jews in the time before the Second World War and, secondly, of providing some answers as to the topography of the forebears of the descendants of East Prussian Jews, the latter now scattered all over the world. This exhibit, which can take place thanks to the generous support of Königsberg Jews and their descendants, is an important event. To all who have been involved, a very warm thanks.

A special thanks is due the Historical Museum whose support made possible the bringing of the plan to fruition. The opening of the exhibit on 9 November unites the visitors – both the descendants of the Königsberg Jews as well as today’s residents –
in a shared reflection on the November pogrom. 

In 2022 opened another exhibition in the synagogue, as part of the Jewish Museum in Kaliningrad, see:

Berlin / Warsaw / Kaliningrad: updated at November 2022
for the Association of Jews in East Prussia
Prof. Dr. Ruth Leiserowitz
Michael Leiserowitz


We thank the following persons and institutions: 

Logo Museum Kaliningrad

David Liebeck (3, 116, p. 45-380) © Karl Martin; Privy
State Archive Berlin (5); Instytut Sztuki PAN Warschau
(4, 7, 67); Ralph Salinger (8, 15); Nicole Morton (9, 47);
Andrea Brewster (10, 11, 19); Michael Maisey (12, 40);
Ori Ilan (13, 30); Joan Webster-Vore (14, 65); Moshe Meron
(16, 19, 34, 85–87, 107); Elisabeth Trautwein-Heymann
(17, 43); John McGovern (20, 84); Ofra Hemdat-Sambursky
(21, 38, 72); George Rosenberg (22); Assaf Steinschneider,
(23, 25, 53a, 53b, 80); Tommy Marx (24); Carole Vogel (31);
Izy Perry (32, 36, 39); Jewgenij Maisel (35); Edna Mirav
(37); LBI NY (41, 42, 58, 66, 90, 92, 96, 106); CZA Jerusalem
(43, 44, 45, 70, 71, 76–79), Państwowe Archiwum Olsztyn
(46, 60, 61, 109, 110, 114, 115); Cornelius Borchardt (49);
akg-images / arkivi (50); Bildarchiv Ostpreußen, (54, 55, 56); CAHJP
Jerusalem (59, 93, 94, 105, 112, 113); © Leiserowitz (51, 68,
117, 118); Yad Vashem Jerusalem (69); Reeva Kimble (73);

Victor Shapiro (81); Bet Hatefuzoth Tel Aviv and Zehava
Markovich (82, 111); Ivar Segalowitz (83); Jasmina
Finger (95); Tirza Posner (100, 101); Ronald Baruch (108)

All quotations by Aron Liebeck:
Aron Liebeck, Mein Leben, 1886-1928,
[ME 812 / MM II 5]

Lech Rowiński / Beton

Compiled by Ruth Leiserowitz

Published by the Society “Juden in Ostpreussen”
(Jews in East Prussia) Verein zur Geschichte und Kultur
e.V. (Registered Association of History and Culture)

ISBN 978-3-00-057974-5