IV. Buildings Integral to the Former Life and/or Persecution of Jews in Altona.
23. No. 43 Försterweg.
In 1867 the Hamburg Jewish community reformed its constitution. Thereafter it had an extremely flexible structure. The community assumed responsiblity for cemeteries and burial. This led to administrative improvements and the resolution of the two burial brotherhoods, the old Chevra Kadischa and the new burial society, into a community body. In Hamburg there had always been tension between traditional and reformed views regarding burial. At the end of the 1880s this conflict came to a head. Members of the Chevra Kadischa accused the burial society of violating the burial regulations and argued that the community had "the responsibility to guarantee the existence of the holy Chevra Kadischa". The latter invited people to subscribe for shares for a new cemetery should it not be possible to bury orthodox Jews separately from reformed Jews in the new cemetery, i.e members of the Synagogue Association from members of the Temple Association. Twenty years later Chief Rabbi Anschel Stern (1820-1888) initiated the move to acquire a new cemetery. He had influential supporters such as Samson Philip Nathan but more importantly the religious members of the Alten and Neuen Klaus.
The "Israelite Burial Brotherhood Langenfelde" ("Israelitische Beerdigungsbrüderschaft Langenfelder")
was established to perform burials in the new cemetery. The "conservative" Langenfelde members were
independent of the community burial institution. In opposition the new Chief Rabbi Mordechai Hirsch
was appointed honorary president of the Chevra Kadischa and declared himself prepared "to decide all
religious questions according to religious law and actively work for the Chevra Kadischa regarding
the community board." The Langenfelde Burial Brotherhood operated as a private organisation in
accordance with society law and sought recognition as a registered society.
Dr. Erika Hirsch: