Kristallnacht, also known as Reichskristallnacht, Pogromnacht and “The Night of Broken Glass”, was a massive nation-wide pogrom in Germany on the night of November 9, 1938 including the early hours of the following day and was directed at Jewish citizens throughout Germany, the newly acquired territories of Austria and Sudetenland.
Germans freely attacked Jews in the street, in their homes and at their places of work and worship. On those two days, this pogrom damaged, and in many cases destroyed, about 1574 synagogues (constituting nearly all Germany had), many Jewish cemeteries, more than 7,000 Jewish shops, and 29 department stores. More than 30,000 Jews were arrested and taken to concentration camps; a few were beaten to death with others forced to watch. The number of Jewish Germans killed is uncertain, with estimates ranging from 36 to about 200 over two days of rioting. The number of Jews killed is most often cited as 91.
For the first time, tens of thousands of Jews were sent to concentration camps simply because they were Jewish. For more about Kristallnacht, click here.
Yad Vashem has produced a special online exhibition regarding the events surrounding Kristallnacht.
It Came From Within… provides an informative and experiential context to the events surrounding Kristallnacht.
All photos Copyright © 2008 Yad Vashem The Holocaust Martyrs’ and Heroes’ Remembrance Authority Yad Vashem:
More photos from Yad Vashem here.