A Synagogue is where Jews gather to pray, read from the Torah (the first 5 books of the Bible), study, and conduct other community activities. It is not known when the Jewish community in Gliwice first came into being formally, but undoubtedly it had established itself in the second half of the 18th century. Initially religious services were held in private houses but in the first years of the 19th century there were efforts made to obtain a building permit for the construction of a prayer house.
| ||There were two synagogues in Gliwice. The first one was established in 1812 at Parafialna Street (presently Kościelna Street). The community had outgrown it by mid-century, so a new and larger synagogue was built next to the old one. The new building, consecrated in 1861, was designed and built by Salomon Lubowski and Louis Troplowitz.|
The new synagogue, with its Moorish architecture, was one of the largest and most beautiful buildings in that part of the city. In the beginning of the 20th century it was rebuilt and became one of the largest synagogues in Upper Silesia.
|The Jewish old age home was built in 1926 where the old synagogue had stood. Nowadays, the building is used as the police-station.|| |
The synagogue building was burned during the Kristallnacht pogrom on 9/10 November 1938 when the majority of synagogues in Germany were burnt, and Jewish-owned shops and houses were looted or destroyed in planned riots throughout the country. That night and the following day all Jewish men in the city between the ages of 18 and 60 were arrested and deported by trains to the camps in Buchenwald and Dachau. Some of them never returned.