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     France,  Alsace,  Monaco




Use this search box to search all Jewish Web Index pages

Some graphics are from other sites without
permission but with a link to the site

Please note that not all links will work mostly because the
link has been changed or deleted by their respective owner


French Medieval Jews' costumes

Jews were living from the 1st, 4th and from the early 5th centuries in Arles, Bordeaux and Lyon. In 1309, France expelled all Jews. 

Though the edict was not really absolute, Toulousin communities reputed several times during the 14th century. After the French Revolution, equal rights were granted to the Jewish population giving them equal rights as citizens of France. 

For lots of information on when various places switched calendars." From a posting by Robert Israel israel@math.ubc.ca

Before WW II, there were over 300,000 French Jews. About twenty five percent of the Jews of France ( 72,320) were sent to Auschwitz and other extermination camps, meaning that 75% were saved by non-Jewish peopleA decree was issued stating that all Jews in France and Belgium must wear the Yellow Star on May 27, 1942.

Today, including some 300,000 North African Jews who immigrated to France during the 1950s, there are about 750,000 Jews in a population of approximately 58, 333,000. 

France is now home to the largest Jewish population in Europe ( and the world's fourth largest Jewish population) mostly due to the massive migration from the late 1950s to the early 1970s of Sephardic Jews from the former North African colonies -- Morocco, Tunisia and Algeria.

There is a thriving community of more than 300,000 Jews in Paris; seventy-five percent are Sefardim and twenty-five percent Ashkenazim.


"The Algeria Hotel: France, Memory and the Second World War"
The title comes from the Jewish commissariat building that became the nerve center for the French regime's collaboration in genocide - Authored by Adam Nossiter and published by Houghton Mifflin, 288 pages $26

"Andre Citroen"
Authored by Jacques Wolgensinger and published in January 1991
ISBN: 208-066484-0

"Annuaire de Rapprochement des Familles"
A family finder is available, but  only for members of the Cercle de Genealogie Juive Society. Email:  office@genealoj.org  For French speaking secretariat@genealoj.org


"Annuaire des Juifs du Comtat Venaissin 1808 to 1890"
Authored by Jean-Claude Cohen


"Assignment Rescue"
Authored by Varian Fray - an informative book about rescue efforts of Jews in southern France
 in 1940-41.  Varian also authored "Surrender on Demand".

"At the Edge of the Forest, Schirroffen, Schirroffen"
Published in 1995 in French 
ISBN 2-84208-000-9

"Being Jewish in France"
This two-disc set is a documentary by Yves Jeuland and Michal Rotman


"Between France and German: The Jews of Alsace-Lorraine 1871-1918"
Authored by Vicki Caron and published by Stanford University Press in 1988

"Catalogue du Fonds de Documentation du"
Authored by Basile Ginger, is a catalog of all documents filed at the Cercle's Library in Paris - a practical guide (in French) to Jewish Genealogy in France and elsewhere
Email:  office@genealoj.org
  For French speaking secretariat@genealoj.org

"Contrats de Mariage Juifs en Moselle avant 1792"
Authored by Jean Fleury. A table of 2,021 Marriage Contracts deposited with the Royal Notaries; 80% in Metz and the remainder in other places, mostly between 1705-1792.  A must for genealogical research before 1793. 

"Departement du Bas-Rhin", 4 volumes,
ISBN 2-9510092-1-6, 2-4, 3-2, 4-0


"Departement du Haut-Rhin", 2 volumes,
ISBN 2-950092-6-7, 7-5


"Departements de Moselle et Meurthe-et-Moselle"

"Dictionary of Genealogy and Biography"
Authored by Claude Geudevertt, the book contains about 10,000 individuals from the 18th century until WW II.  The names are of Jews from Western and Eastern Europe, North Africa, Greece, Turkey and American and Australia

"The Emancipation of the Jews of Alsace"
Authored by Paula Hyman and published by Yale University Press in 1991. 
ISBN 0-300-04986-2

"Etat Civil des Juifs de Nimes et de Pont-Saint-Espirit" 
Lists all civil records of these two towns except living individuals, a work by the specialist of the history of the Jews in Nimes.  

"French Children of the Holocaust, Death Books from Auschwitz"
Published in 1995

"A Guide to Research in Paris"
Published by The Archives de Paris, is a guide to biographical and genealogical research in Paris.  It covers public records, cemeteries, censuses, electoral lists, military archives, almanacs and directories.  There is also a map of the Arrondissements (districts) prior to 1860 and those of the present day.
Archives de Paris
18 Bd. Serurier
75019 Paris, France.

"Index du Denombrement des Juifs d'Alsace de 1784"
A reprint of Dan Leeson's index, includes the index by name and given names.

"Index de Memoire Juive en Alsace, Contrats de Mariage au XVIIIe Siecle"
2 volume set of a searchable marriage database created by Dan and Rosanne Leeson.  It includes listings of contracts of marriages in the 18th century.  According to a French law of 1701, these 'contracts de marriage' had to be registered by an official notary.  These contracts are as a matter of fact not "k'tuvot" but "t'na'im acharonim" (literally "later {or last} conditions"). Some of these 'contracts de marriage' (contracts of marriage) have actually the title  't'na'im acharonim' others are referred to as t'na'im, be'scha'at ha'chupa [e.g. conditions {agreed on} at the time of the wedding).  From a posting by Daniel Teichman Daniel.Teichman@vsao.ch


"Jewish Military Casualties in the Polish Armies in World War II"
History, names and burial places of the Jewish soldiers in the Polish armies, including those who fought in France, Norway, North Africa and Switzerland.  Authored by Benjamin Mertchak - a 5 volume set.

"Jews in France During the Second World War"
Authored by Renee Poznanski, she cites information from the National Archives. During the school year 1942-43, more than 7,700 Jewish children were attending school in the Academy of Paris and these were divided among  kindergarten, grammar schools and further (Cours Complementaire) College and Vocational schools.  Almost half of the Jewish children were in the 11t, 18th and 20 Arrondissement.  Many of the adolescent boys were at the college Voltaire and the girls at Victor Hugo.  From the summer of 1943, if one of the members of the family was stopped, the others would have to go into hiding immediately to escape the rounding up of families.

"Jews of France: A History From Antiquity to the Present"
Authored by Esther Benbassa and translated by M. B. DeBevoise. Published by Princeton University Press.

"Journey to Alsace"
Updated and printed in the GenAmi Newsletter


"The Language of the Jews in the Four Communities of Comtat Venaissin, Michel Alessio"
Authored by Zosa Szajkowski

"L’orfevrerie Algerienne et Tunisienne" (Jewish jewelers in Algiers))
Authored by Paul Eduel who has gathered information about jewelers in Algiers from around 1830 to the early 20th century ’s book (Algiers, 1902). He displays them in a table where many readers might find ancestors.

"La Deportation des Juifs de la Marne"
Authored by Jocelyne Husson

"Le Cimetiere Israelite Regional de Luneville (1759 - 1998)"
Authored by Françoise and Sylvain Job.  An inventory of some 1,000 tombstones of Jews from Luneville and surrounds.

"Le Denombrement des Juifs d'Alsace de 1784"
A reprint of the comprehensive census of Jews in Alsace.


"Le Juifs d'Afrique du Nord: Demographie et Onomastique"
Authored by Maurice Eisenbeth


"Le Livre d'Or du Judaisme Algerien" - first edition 1919.

"Les Fils et Filles de Deportes Juifs de France"
President:  Maitre Serge Klarsfeld.  Contact M. Helbronner for more details at


"Marriages Religieux Juifs a Paris, 1848 - 1872"
A table of 2,304 marriages from the records of the Paris Consistoire, cross-referenced with those of the 1872 census.  Authored by Anne Lifshitz-Krams 


"Memorial de la Deportation des Juifs de France", (Memorial to the Jews Deported from France 1942-44) This large sized book lists more than 80,000 names of Jews deported to Eastern Europe (mostly to Auschwitz) or killed in France.  Each entry includes name, birth date and birth place.

The main transit camp at Drancy alone came from 37 countries including:

France -     22,193
Other   -    16,354
Poland -     14,459
Germany -    6,222
Russian   -   3,290
Romania -    2,958
Austria    -   2,217

Source: Table p. xxxvi

The book has no index.  A research aid is available (microfiche index) from

The book may be obtainable via Interlibrary loan.  The microfiche may be obtainable from Jewish Genealogical Society library collections.  The Index is an alphabetic list of 40,000 surnames that appear in the book and shows surname and convoy number. The U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum offers a similar database on the Internet that includes maiden names of women.

"Paris Cemeteries - Jewish Sections"
Authored by Gilles Plaut. Cimetiere de Montmartre (Division 3); Cimetiere du Pere-Lachaise (Division Israelite). Names and data are copied from the gravestones are indexed alphabetically.

"Proceedings of the International Seminar on Jewish Genealogy - 1997"
Includes many useful and practical information for genealogists researching in and about France.


"Provence Jewish Heritage Routes"
Based on Jules Farber's French book, "Les Juifs du Pape en Provence"
An English version "The Pope's Jews in Provence"

"Recueil des Declarations de Prise de Nom Patronymiques des Juif"
Authored by Pierre Katz. The Jews living in France in 1808, were forced to adopt permanent family and given names.  Each person's name was registered in the town hall. 

"Sarah's Key"
Authored by Tatiana de Rosnay.  The book recalls a dark day in Paris in July 1942, when French police arrested more than 8,000 Jews, corralled them into the Velodrome d'Hiver and ultimately sent them to die at Auschwitz.  The book came about because of the author's stroll down a cheerless street not far from the Eiffel Tower to the site where the Velodrome d'Hiver had once stood.  She instantly knew that the place held terrible memories.  The book was made into a movie which the webmaster has seen and who came away with total sadness of the despicable way the French Police and some of the French citizens encouraged this action.

"Scenes of Jewish Life in Alsace"
Authored by Daniel Stanben.  Contains drawings, descriptions and stories of Jewish life in Alsace in the 1860s.

"Stammbuch der Frankfurter Juden"
Authored by Alexander Dietz and published in 1988 by Vanderher Publications in Cornwall, UK.   The Cercle de Genealogie Juive 
Email:  office@genealoj.org
  For French speaking secretariat@genealoj.org


The Society bought it in 1999 and that it can be useful not only for members of Frankfurt Jewish families but French researchers, as well.   Leo Baeck Institute is one of the holders of this book. The one feature of the English translation that adds to its utility is that, unlike the German original, it has an index.
ISBN 0-95141580-8

"Surrender on Demand"
Authored by Varian Fray - an informative book about rescue efforts of Jews in southern France in 1940-41.  Varian also authored "Assignment Rescue".

"Tables du Registre d'etat Civil de la Communaute Juive de Metz (1717 to 1792)"
A reprint of the 1987 edition is the earliest civil vital records in Metz, following an order of the Metz bailiff. The author is Pierre-Andrè Meyer.

"Vital Records for the Jews of Algeria"
Authored by Roland Gozland.  The author, together with Fernand Deray and Annick Forgens, have created a record project of all the existing microfilms of civil state of Algeria kept at the "Archives d' Outre-mer" (Overseas archives) at Aix-en-Provence according to a note in the Sephardi Genealogical and Historical Society and Review, Issue 4, Vol. 2, Spring 1999


French Jewish Genealogy


Aki Estamos-Les Amis de la Lettre Sepharade (Friends of the Sephardic Letter Society)

Founded in 1998, the society is devoted to Judeo-Spanish culture

Alliance Israelite Universelle

(Located at 45 rue La Bruyere, Paris, 9e) offers Jewish Genealogy courses. Contact is Mrs. Laurence Abensur-Hazan Laurphil@wanadoo.fr





Note: most sites are in French.


Micheline Gutmann michelinegutmann@free.fr stated on 12/13/01 in the JewishGen forum that "Indeed, death records less than 100 years old are accessible without restriction."   "I am afraid the information I saw there is not correct.  The official limit to get death certificates is 50 years.  Until recently, the death records were easily given, without condition in practice, but not following the law."  "Something which is also new since a few months ago; it is necessary to always give the reason of your request even if you are a descendant.  We give the following advice: don't speak of genealogy.

For Paris, you may now ask for records on-line at:   

The site is in French.  It is better if you give the arrondissement, but it is not obligatory.  It is also better to give a date, but they can find it if it is not precise.  They send you the copies of the original documents.  It is free in France.

Service des Archives Departmentales
18 Boulevard Serurier
75019 Paris

Telephone: 01 53 72 41 28

Alliance Israelite Universelle
45 Rue La Bruyere
75009, Paris, France
Phone 67 68 74
Further information may be available from Mrs. Laurence
Abensur-Hazan Laurphil@wanadoo.fr

Archives Departmentales
Nantes, France


Archives de France
In Paris; Reglementation, evaluation et controle de la collecte, description, conservation et communication des archives publiques autres que celles des ministeres des Affaires estrangeres et de la Defense.  English version available.


Archives de Paris
Mainly vital records from Paris some more than 100 years old
18 Boulevard Serurier
75019 Paris. 
Phone 01 53 72 41 23 


Archives Nationales (aka CARAN)
11 rue des Quatre Fils, 75003 Paris (until July 2002: 58 rue de Richelieu 75002 Paris after)
Phone: 01 40 27 60 00 
The Reading Room is 01 40 27 65 55
address for mail:
60 rue des
75041 Paris cedex 03

Archives Centrales de la France depuis les Merovingiens jusqu'en 1958, among them: Notarial Files for Paris; Options for French citizenship in 1871 of people born in Alsace-Lorraine, Naturalization files until 1930.  Though the archives discourage personal research help, if you have sufficient details to offer them, they will consider researching on your behalf; if you are out of the country, enclose two International Reply Coupons (IRC) for the reply.  Sites below are in French.


Archives Nationales
Centre des archives du monde du travail

Archives Nationales Centre national du microfilm (CNM)

Bension Collection of Sephardic Manuscripts

Rabbinical diploma of Michel Albagli, Rhodes

Records of French colonies an excellent summary descriptions of the manuscripts are at the
AIU (Alliance Israelite)
Universelle, 45 Rue La Bruyere
75009, Paris, France  



Bibliotheque Genealogique

Located at
3 rue de Turbigo
Paris, 1e
Offers a Jewish Genealogy meeting twice a month on  Tuesday afternoon.


Business Directory

Les Pages Jaunes - French Yellow Pages


CARAN - French National Archives
French Naturalization Records

Registered before 1930, are kept in the National Archives. If you have an accurate date to have looked up, requests for information may be made  from "une consultation de dossier par extrait" to
11 rue des 4 fils
75003, Paris, France
with an International Reply coupon enclosed for the reply.





Research in Jewish Cemeteries in France


An explanation about the repossession of graves by Paris authorities.  Includes some photos of Bagneux cemetery.  

Montparnasse cemetery
Available at The Jewish cemetery of l'Isle sur la Sorgue.





Pantin Cemetery
The older Jewish cemetery  in Paris, is Rue de Flandre, the inscriptions are in Hebrew.  They were translated by Isidore LOEB (A.I.U) and  presented by Leon KAHN in 1885 in one of his books. I don't copy all the text , only names, places and dates

1 - Salomon PERPIGNAN, d.1781
2 - Abraham DALPUGET, d. 1781
4 - Rebecca HENRIQUE, 80 y.o., d.1796
5 - Moise SALOM d. le 23 Sept. 1796
6 - Joseph CAVAILLON, 98 y.o.,d.1797
7 - Anne Rachel, widow Mardoché RAVEL, b. Bordeaux, 18 y.o., d.1797
8 - Rachel, fille de Joseph NONES, 2 y.o. b.Bayonne
9 - Esther , fille de Joseph NUNES  10 y.o. b.  Bayonne, d.1794
10 - Judith DELVAILLE SYLVEIRA, 56 ans, b. Bayonne, d.  Pantin, 1803
11 - Mardochée LION, d. 1803
12 - Haim NONES, d.01803
13 - Mardochée DELPUGET d. 1804, 51 ans , b. Avignon
14 - Aron ABADY, 53 ans, d. 1805
15 - Abraham Lope LAGUNA, d.1807, 58 y.o.
16 - Rachel Silva LOPES LAGONNA, d.1806, 54 y.o.
17 - Rachel Sylva ep. Abraham DACOSTA  b. 1774 Bordeaux, d.1802
18 - Aron RAVEL d'Avignon, d.1809
19 - Mardochée Ravedayah d'Avignon, d.1808
20 - ? 1809
21 - Blanche RAVEL d'Avignon, d.1803
22 - Elie RAVIL, 1799
23 -Rrebecca CAPPADOCE PEREIRA,b. Amsterdam 1766, d. 1798
From a posting by Micheline Gutmann MARCUS Michelin...@compuserve.com Administrateur de la Federation Francaise de Genealogie GenAmi [Paris, France]

Jewish Cemeteries


Centre des Archives d'Outre-mer, Aix en Provence 



Records of more than 100 years old of former French colonies and especially of Algeria.  They do not accept requests for lookup by mail  


The Centre d'Entraide Genealogique

The Centre does not do individual research but offers free help within the limits of French law.  Site is in French, but by using the "Translate" feature of Google, you can read the site in English


Centre Historique (CHAN)

Archives Centrales de la France depuis les Merovingiens jusqu'en 1958 (archives des organismes et etablissements d'Ancien Regime supprimes a la Revolution, archives des administrations centrales de l'Etat, archives privees, minutes des notaires paris 

Cercle de Genealogie Juive, (French JGS in Paris) aka CGJ Jewish Genealogy site  

Email: office@genealoj.org

For French speaking secretariat@genealoj.org
Mail Address: 14, Rue Saint Lazare
75009 Paris
Phone/Fax: 01 40 23 04 90 
For anyone seeking help in France, the Cercle, as it is known, is very willing to help, if they can, with no strings. 

Museum of Family History


General Office for Jewish Affairs
Created to enforce anti-Semitic policies and to assist in deportation to death camps.  The files include deportation lists, collaboration names and letters from collaborators denouncing Jews.  

These records are in 6,500 cartons and the CGQJ does not do any individual research.  Contact
Paul Rene Bazin
Archives Curator
Federation Francaise de Genealogie
3, rue Turbigo, 75001, Paris
Phone: 01 40 27 60 00 



Chambon Foundation

In and around Le Chambon-sur-Lignon, France, 5,000 Jews, many of them children, were sheltered from the Nazis by  5,000 Christians, as recounted in Piere Sauvage documentary,  
Weapons of the Spirit"


The Prize for Humanity
Presented to Mayor Francis Valla of this mountain village in recognition of the courageous villagers of  this mountain town and surrounding area in Southern France.  The townspeople hid and saved some 5,000 mostly Jewish refugees from deportation and extermination during the period of 1940-1945.

The villagers, mostly Huguenot Christians, were inspired by their pastor's appeal to use "weapons of the spirit" to fight the inhumanity of the Nazis.




In medieval France, this word meant castle. 

Communes in France

Chastel, Haute-Loire, in the Haute-Loire department

Chastel-Arnaud, in the Drôme department

Chastel-Nouvel, in the Lozère department

Chastel-sur-Murat, in the Cantal department




COMTAT VENAISSIN, former papal territory in S.E. France, corresponding approximately to the present department of Vaucluse. Ceded in 1274 to the Holy See, to whom it belonged until the reunion with France in 1791, it became a distinct territory along with the town of Avignon (though the later remained independent in local administration). Apart from Avignon, Jews do not seem to have settled in the Comtat earlier than the 12th century. The major Jewish communities, known as the "four holy communities," were those of Avignon, Carpentras, Cavaillon, and L'Isle-sur-la-Sorgue.

There were, however, smaller communities of a more ephemeral nature in Caromb, Entraigues-sur-la-Sorgue, Malaucène, Monteux, Mormoiron, Mornas, Pernes-les-Fontaines, and Vaison-la-Romaine. The Comtat became a haven of refuge for the Jews of the two provinces of Languedoc and Provence after various expulsions – in 1306, 1322, and 1394, and later around 1500. The Jews of the Comtat spoke a Judeo-Provençal dialect, which they also employed in some semi-liturgic poetry, and had their own synagogue rite,
now fallen into disuse (see Liturgy). The reconstituted communities of the region, e.g., at Carpentras, were formed in the mid-20th century, mainly by Jews of North African origin





The umbrella group of secular French Jewish organizations - Richard Prasquier is the President

Death Certificates: Requesting Form

Many of the French departmental archives have been digitizing  their records and making them available online - generally at no cost for access. Quite a few have their birth, marriage and death records (actes d'etat civil) online, or at least the decennial indexes. Generally you should expect to find digital images of the original books, but no searchable database or index. This is no more work than viewing the same records on microfilm, however, and you can search from the comfort of home! Explore this list of Online French Genealogy Records for links, or check the Web site of the Archives Departmentales which holds the records for your ancestor's town. Do not expect to find records less than 100 years online, however


Veuillez avoir l'obligeance de me faire parvenir la photocopie de l'acte de deces de mon grand-pere (Name of grandparent in English here) qui est mort a  l'Hospital Americian de Neuilly au mois de juin 1971.  Avec mes remerciements anticipes, veuillez agreer, Messieurs, me salutations distinguees. From a posting by Micheline Guttmann



Declaration of Nationality

The 1889 French law for obtaining nationality states that one must have been living in France for 10 years (from the declaration of arrival in the local council of the town of residence).  It was possible to shorten the delay by requesting first "admission a domicile" after one or two years of residence and then 3 years later asking for "naturalization".  

For further information about French Naturalization, and how to obtain files, see the paper written by S. Toublanc, in the Revue du Cercle de Genealogie Juive, nº57, Spring 1999, Pages 25 - 28. 



The "Denombrement General des Juifs Toleres en la Province d'Alsace en 1784"

An invaluable genealogical tool for the reconstruction of the Jewish families at the end of the 18th century.  This information is located in the Revue du Cercle de Genealogies Juive #68



Dorot | Association d’histoire

15 avenue de Gadagne
FR-69230 St Genis Laval - France
Manuela Wyler manuela@dorot.fr


ETSI - Sephardi Genealogical and Historical Society  

The purpose of "ETSI" is to help people interested in Jewish Genealogical and Historical Research in the Sephardi World.  "ETSI's" field of study covers the Ottoman Empire (Turkey, Greece, Palestine, Syria, Libya, Egypt); North Africa (Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia); Spain, Portugal, Italy and Gibraltar.  The study of every Sephardi community or family who lived in other regions is equally within the society's aim.  







Business 2 business company directory and business in Europe, yellow pages access, international and European business directory (professional services, addresses and business classifieds

Fonds Social Juif Unifie


F-75005 Paris, France


Marseille Provence

France - Jewish Communities List


French Alumni Organization - Les Enfants Caches

17 rue Geoffroy
75004 Paris, France. 
Phone/Fax: (33) 1 42 78 60 30 

French Deportee Information

French Deportation Lists
Contains 69,940 Names of Jews deported from France between 1942 and 1944

May be obtained from CDJC, Centre de Documentation Juive Contemporaine in Paris.




French-English Dictionary

This might be of some use to you and it is freeware


Additional Dictionaries may be found at my link to Amazon.com

French Federation Francaise de Genealogie


They do not do any individual research.  It is an organization which reunites several French genealogical societies together.



French Genealogy Help Sites

Some sites are in French.  It looks like it may be of value, but then I can't read French



French Migration Information

This site encourages a worldwide exchange of genealogy information about French emigrants and immigrants from 1600 to 1950.  Also Germany, Ireland, England, Italy and Spain links at  



French Military Archives

Located in Vincennes (Service Historique de l'Armee).  There is an article about the work performed to date by author Pierre Lautmann about the Jews in the armies of the French Revolution and the Empire including statistics between 1791 and 1815.  1350 individuals are listed in his database. This information located in Revue du Cercle de Genealogies Juive #68 Email: office@genealoj.org  For French speaking secretariat@genealoj.org



French Naturalization

For French naturalizations, an invaluable source of information, contact the Cercle de Genealogie Juive, site Email:  office@genealoj.org

For French speaking secretariat@genealoj.org


Micheline Gutmann
76 rue de Passy
75016, Paris  


"I will explain you the method, which in your case is simple please get in touch with me."

In this simple case (1931-1942), send to the Centre des Archives Contemporaines in Fontainebleau,

the information which follows (the request could be as follows, in French):

Je voudrais obtenir une photocopie du dossier de naturalisation de... Nom prénom, né le …à (localité et pays), naturalisé le…, référence …Lorsque le dossier sera disponible, envoyez-moi SVP la facture pour les copies et l'envoi.

The price of the copies is .30 euros/page, and there are usually between 5 and 30 pages in a file. I can give the "reference" if you give me the surname and given name and if possible the date or place of birth (to avoid any confusion). Another solution is to check an index in a CD called "naturalisations francaises", available from a special vendor in Paris, for 34 euros + mailing charges. Payments to the CAC should be through a French bank or, maybe, through an international postal money order (no foreign checks).

In the other cases, our Society (see my signature) requires a subscription to the Society, or simply a small donation (at least 20 euros), because it involves a special research (and a small donation would also be appreciated in the simple case described above), and the reimbursement of expenses which can occur (in some cases only).

You see the explanation is not really simple, even in the simplest case!  CGJ (Cercle de Genealogie Juive, International JGS in Paris) Email:  office@genealoj.org
For French speaking secretariat@genealoj.org


Another site to look at is  

"From my own experience I can witness that you have to find a person in France, preferably in Paris, who will order the Naturalization files from the National Archives. It takes about 3 weeks for them to arrive. Then you can read them in the National Archives and take notes or copy with a pen. They do not allow photocopying!"  From a posting by Jacob Rosen Jerusalem abuwasta@yahoo.com

French Pamphlets Published in the Late 18th Century

The University of Maryland is digitizing 300 French pamphlets published in the late 18th century. “The pamphlets reveal valuable information about French society during the upheaval of the Revolution (June 1788-December 1804) and provide cultural historians, linguists and political scientists with important source material to study history, language, politics, government and social issues

French Underground or Resistance

These Frenchmen are digging graves for the victims of German atrocities. Photo from Prologue Magazine, Fall 1992.

This association may be able to offer some information:
Union des Résistants et Déportés Juifs de France
35 Place Saint-Ferdinand - 75017 PARIS
Email : urdf@noos.fr
Fax : 33-1 45 72 11 70
Director : Adam Rayski
http://www.scrapbookpages.com/natzweiler /History/FrenchResistance.html 




A discussion group - and there is a lot of information about Jewish genealogical research in France, French Colonies and French-speaking areas including Alsace, Belgium, Luxembourg and Switzerland

There are links, travel information and documents available at this site and it is in English.  The FrenchSIG also covers other French-speaking areas, such as Belgium, Luxembourg and the Swiss-Romande!

GenAmi (Association de Genealogie Juive Internationale)

The genealogical society, located in Paris. The primary purpose is to provide a forum for questions, exchange of information and discussion of matters involved in conducting Jewish genealogical research in France, other French-speaking areas i.e. Belgium, Luxembourg and Switzerland, and in former French colonies including Tunisia, Algeria, etc. 


All The Titles of the GenAmi Review

Issue number 10, of the Associations publication,  has a chapter about cemeteries and an explanation about the repossessing of graves by Paris authorities.  Some photos of Bagneux Cemetery.  Information about Montparnasse cemetery and the Jewish cemetery of I'Isle sur la Sorgue.  

In Issue 8, the older and most complete collection of Paris Phone Directories is the Didot-Bottin.  It is an Almanac of Commerce, existing since 1805

The collection can be reviewed at the Hotel de Ville at the Bibliotheque Administrative de la Ville de Paris.  Some records are not available due to their being in a bad state and require restoration. 

After 1812, not only are there Paris addresses, but elsewhere in France, England, Germany and even the US.  Since 1841, there were two volumes published; one for Paris and another for other towns.  And since 1881, each ten years, a volume has been published for other countries.

Forum of GenAmi
A forum for Jewish Genealogy.  For genealogical information in France, Belgium, Luxembourg and to exchange of information in several languages.  Only available for members of the JGS GenAmi as there is no moderator, but laws to respect.

Publishes many interesting stories, including:
"A Genealogical Journey from London to Amsterdam, Hamburg, Metz, Sierentz
and Prague
GenAmi number 19 

Contact is Micheline Guttmann
76 rue de Passy
75016, Paris  



A list on the JewishGen system that deals exclusively with the Jews of German speaking countries

There is also some information available for French speaking German areas at


Heraldry - Jewish




Hidden Children ("Engants caches")

Located in Paris.  Irene Savignon is Secretary-General of the organization.  Frederique Imer-Loup has discovered a trail of children hidden directly or indirectly though a private adoption charity called Adoption Francaise.  However, none of these children were reunited with their biological family after the war.  Since they were placed in the care of these families at a very young age between 1939 and 1944 (often younger than 4), they have no knowledge of their name at birth; this makes 'my' research very problematic.  Frederique Imer-Loup has discussed this problem in his personal web site



History of the Jewish Community in France

The Jewish historical and spiritual heritage in France found its origin nearly two millennia ago. This was after the Romans conquered the area now known as Paris, a bastion of France’s religion. There is some evidence that Jewish religious heritage in France began with small settlements in Metz, Poitiers, and Avignon. However, solid physical evidence of Jewish religious and spiritual heritage really starts in the 5th century with the tiny Jewish communities in Brittany, Clermont-Ferrand, Narbonne, Agde, Valence and Orléans. Since that time France has been an important center of Jewish spiritual and religious heritage. Jewish scholarship, one of the most important spiritual heritage in France, flourished, due in part to forced segregation. 

The cities of Troyes, Narbonne, Perpignan, and Paris were known throughout both the Jewish and Christian worlds for their rabbis and interpreters of the Torah and the Talmud, and for writers and composers of Jewish literature and liturgy. Among these scholars was a man who is still considered one of the greatest of all time—Rabbi Solomon ben Isaac (1040–1105), known to Jewish history by the acronym RASHI.

In addition to giving the
Jewish world some of its greatest scholars, the Jewish religious heritage of France has given the whole world many renowned figures in the arts, literature, industry, and politics, among them Sarah Bernhardt, André Citroën, Jacques Derrida, Darius Milhaud, Leon Blum, Jacques Offenbach, Camille Pisarro, and Marcel Proust

Holocaust and the Courage of the Huguenots during WW II

Jewish children sheltered by the Protestant population of the village of Le Chambon-sur-Lignon. France, 1941. — US Holocaust Memorial Museum

One of many stories of courage and compassion in France, occurred in Le Chambon-sur-Lignon, a picturesque village in the fastness of the Haute-Loire and 75 miles southwest of Lyon.  Its 9,000 mountain Huguenots are a small fraction of France's 900,000 Protestants, who, in turn, represent no more than two percent of the country's population.  An article, published in the February 2014 issue of Hadassah Magazine .and authored by Haim Chertok has been released.   A film about the Huguenots and the saving of Jewish lives has been created by the Chambon Foundation



Holocaust Encyclopedia - France  (Note: In France it is referred to as Shoah)




IMMAJ (Institut Mediterranean Memoires and Archives of Jews)

The site is in English, French, Italian and Spanish  

John Patrick Fano
jpfano357@aol.com has offered on 12/12/01 to help search for French buried in Nice, Marseille, Nimes, Montpellier, Avignon and Perpignan.   

He needs the name and any information, i.e. Birth date and place, Wife's name, etc.   He further states that he has personally worked on the "Cimetiere Juif du Chateau" de NiceUnder French regulations, there are no problems to obtain burial certificates as the cemetery is public.

Further information about obtaining assistance in Nice may be found in Ernest Kallmann' s article for the Cercle de Genealogie Jive.  This is an excellent description of the regulation for obtaining French records, according to a posting in the 12/12/2001 JewishGen Digest by Jan Bousse.  He further states that 'It also completes and partly corrects 'your' information.  

Indeed, death records less than 100 years old are accessible without restriction.  As for birth and marriage certificates, the ones that are delivered only to direct descendants are the "copies integrales".  

Any person can request "des extraits d'actes de naissance ou de mariage".  The difference with the "copies integrales" is that "les extraits ne comportent aucun renseignement sur les parents de l'enfant (acte de naissance) ou des epoux (actes de mariage)".   In brief, my opinion is that even for records less than 100 years old, there is considerable scope in the information available.  

Death records are fully accessible, birth and marriage extracts can give you dates of the event, if not details about parents, which of course, is an important restriction.  For further information on the subject of obtaining French records, the FrenchSIG has an excellent article on its site, written by Ernest Kallmann of the Cercle de Genealogie Juive 
Email:  office@genealoj.org 
For French speaking secretariat@genealoj.org 

If you click on the link to Documents you will find it there.


Jeweler's Register of Addresses

France from 1928 to 1940Request the link information.  

Jewish Heritage

A web site in both French and English 


Jewish History

A description of the 1784 census of all Alsatian Jews and the 1808 family name-choosing list for all the Jews of France and a lot more of interest to anyone researching the Jews of Alsace




Jewish Journal


Jewish Tribune

An influential French Jewish bi-monthly - Editor-in-Chief is Olivier Guland


Kehillat Gesher

An English, French and Hebrew speaking synagogue which prides itself on "bridging the gap" between cultures - French and Anglophone, Sephardi and Ashkenazi, modern and traditional.  The synagogue is located in the Seventeenth District of Paris.


Information on Beate Klarsfeld, and the French Holocaust (Shoah)




Legal Databases

Juricaf is a free, searchable, francophone database of primarily Supreme Court decision from over 40 countries. Developed with the support of the International Organisation de la Francophonie and the French Ministry of Justice, its objective is to make supreme court decisions, particularly those of African countries, freely available. Coverage varies country to country. The database includes over 700,000 French court decisions, over 4,000 decisions of the Canadian Supreme Court, and a handful of decisions from a number of African countries. You can browse case law by country or search across multiple jurisdictions

"List of Jews deported from France in 1942-1944"  


(From the original French deportation lists)
A searchable database compiled by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum



Global Gazetteer
A great web site. It is a directory of  2,880,532 of the world's cities and towns, sorted by country and linked to a map for each town.  A tab separated list is available for each country. 

Open Street Maps
The crowd-sourced mapping project OpenStreetMap has amassed a million contributors since its inception in 2005 and, according to navigation app maker Skobbler, boasts greater accuracy in England, Russia and Germany than rivals such as Google Maps.  I tried the site and found an accurate drawing of my father's ancestral town Tal'ne, Ukraine.  Almost every country is available as is most towns

Map of France showing the partitions under the 1940 armistice

Map of France




Museum of Jewish Art & History

“There’s a Jewish freethinker’s saying about Paris,” Saul Bellow wrote in the novel
Ravelstein,” “wie Gott in Frankreich [“like God in France”]. Meaning that even God took his holidays in France. Why? Because the French are atheists and among them God himself could be carefree, a flâneur, like any tourist.”

Located at 71 Rue du Temple, Paris 3e.  Entrance fee is 40 francs including an audio guide.  The museum traces the history of Jews in Western Europe (mostly France) from the middle ages onward.  There is a meeting held every first Thursday in the month on Jewish Genealogy.

Musee d'Arts et Traditions Populaires de Marmoutier


6 rue du General Leclerc
Telephone 333-88-71-46-84
This half-timbered Alsatian house built in 1590 boasts an eighteenth-century mikve, Judaica and Alsatian art and pottery.  When Jews occupied this house, the oriel window boasted a removable roof to accommodate a sukkah.

Naturalization Files

Copies of records, for a charge, are available at the National Archives. 




Jacqueline with other children in the French orphanage.


Oeuvre Nationale de L'Enfance (O.N.E)
Contact Mr. Dennis Hayman.  A reunion was held in September 2004. For the complete story about the American Pilots and the Orphans of Le Chateau Dongelberg




UGIF  (Jewish orphanage)
5 rue Granville


Orthodox Judaism



Commercial Site with links to eleven French Jewish Communities with Synagogue information

Phone Numbers

On-line directory of France




Plaques' and other documents concerning France and Algeria

In the Winter, 1999 issue of Revue du Cercle de Genealogie Juive, there are some research documents for those who had ancestors in France including: "The Jews and the Plague in Metz in 1636"

Information about these documents are available by contacting Anne Lifshitz  Krams at  Cercle de Genealogie Juive, aka CGJ Jewish Genealogy site 

and by reviewing her announcement in the archives of JewishGen of 2/16/00  page 12


Email: office@genealoj.org
For French speaking secretariat@genealoj.org



Postal Information

Jewish POW in Italian camp to Neve Chaim in Palestine, 9/1942 letter in German on Italian camp postal stationary, delivered by International Red Cross; with Italian and British censor and IRC cachets; signed "Shalom Uv'racha


Give this site a try for all kinds of postal information for most countries including France

Rabbinical Personalities




Regulations for Obtaining French Records

Death records less than 100 years old are accessible without restriction.  As for Birth and Marriage Certificates, the ones that are delivered only to direct descendants are the "copies integrales."  Any person can request "des extraits d'actes de naissance ou de mariage."  The difference with the "copies integrales" is that "les extrits ne comportent aucun renseigement sur les parents de l'enfant (acte de naissance) ou des epoux (actes de mariage)". Even for records less than 100 years old, there is considerable scope in the information available.  Death records are fully accessible, birth and marriage extracts can give you dates of the event, if not details about parents, which of course is an important restriction.

For further information on the subject of obtaining French records the FrenchSIG has an excellent article on its site, written by Ernest Kallmann of the Cercle de Genealogie Juive (Click on the link to Documents)

Book Reviews

A biography of Arthur Meyer, newspaper tycoon, Jew, royalist and anti-Dreyfus. Michèle BITTON : outstanding Jewish women in France during the 19th and 20th centuries.
Dictionary of French Righteous among the Nations", published by Yad Vashem in Jerusalem and Fayard in ParisFrom a posting by Ernest Kallmann Cercle de Genealogie Juive 

Death certificates
In the Paris Department Archives, for Jewish soldiers and officers in the Armies of the French Revolution and Empire.  Pierre LAUTMANN The author continues preparing a dictionary of the Jewish military personnel in the Armies of the French Revolution and Empire. He has discovered a new source of information in the Paris Departement Archives: their death certificates. He describes the files he has found, connects their data with those of other sources, and intends to exploit similar documents from the other Department Archives.

Origin and dissemination of the family name Gugenheim, part 3. John E. BERKOWITCH The third and last part of this contribution presents an outline of the Gugenheim family tree covering some eleven generations, extending from the early XVth century to the period of the French Revolution. The first four generations precede the adoption of the surname by a Joseph (ca. 1555-1615), born in Frankfurt on the Main, who made at least one stay in a locality formerly named Gugenheim (today Jugenheim), situated 25 km southwest of Mainz. No reference whatsoever supports the hypotheses, frequently put forward, which tie the origin of the surname to either of two similarly named localities at the time, one northwest of Strasbourg, the other south of Darmstadt. The children and grandchildren of this Joseph settle primarily in the region of the middle Rhine valley, especially in and around Frankfort, Bingen and Worms. The following generations scatter over Western Germany, Switzerland, Alsace and Lorraine. At the time of the French Revolution, the surname can been found from Hamburg in the North to Aargau in the South, and from Berlin and Vienna in the East to Metz in the West.

A Ketubbah
From Avignon in the Cecil Roth collection in Toronto Max POLONOVSKI This document can be linked by no family relation whatsoever to the Ketubot of families in Nimes, originating in Carpentras, previously analyzed in issues 67, 69 and 70 of Revue du CGJ. It comes from Avignon, records the marriage of Jassuda de Saint-Paul and his cousin Liotte de Saint-Paul on Friday, Nisan 13, 5514 (April 5, 1754) and obeys the usual rules of the contracts in this region. It bears 12 signatures, their authors are all identified.

"J'ai du bon tabac"
(a popular French rhyme), says Mr. Henle. Eliane ROOS-SCHUHL The author describes the tobacco pot, presently in the Museum of Israel, of El'hanan Henle, a jeweler from Fuerth and deciphers its inscription.  The given name Nethanael prompts her to search its origin as well as the origin of the father's name in this case. This leads to the history of the town Fuerth and of its Jewish population, and to the portrait of significant outstanding individuals from the Henle and Dispeck families. Family trees illustrate the text.

Eliane ROOS-SCHUHL reveals her discovery of a Dutch mohelbuch, hidden in a book filed in the library of the Alliance Israelite Universelle in Paris.

Revue du Cercle de Genealogie Juive
Issue # 73 of Revue du Cercle de Genealogie Juive. Here is a summary

Research Information and Documentation Links

Lots of valuable information available at this site



Search Sites that also may be of value include 



An excellent site to find information about most European countries is at

Type in the name of the country you wish to research in the search field.  This site is a great source to find information for almost every European country. 

Another valuable site to help find a person, maps, etc. - and type in the name of any country you wish to research. This service is free.

Sephardic Sites    (  Sephardic  )




Synagogue List

A list of French synagogues is included in the book.
"A Travel Guide To Jewish Europe"
Author is Ben G. Frank

Telephone Books for France




Translation Service   Languages

A commercial site offering many language translating programs


French English Dictionary on-line at


French Cities and Towns



Provence has always been a shelter and a welcoming land for Jewish communities. Their presence in the South of France goes back to the beginning of Roman Gaul after the fall of Masada in 73.

These communities improved the cultural life of the area especially the scientific, medical, mystical and philosophical field. They played an important economic role in the progression of techniques, and in the movement of goods and ideas. The artistic field is also part of the heritage especially in music. In the middle ages these communities were banished from the Kingdom of France and consequently had to find other places to live.

The independent County of Provence was one of the places. Aix-en-Provence for example had an important Jewish community. But after this area was linked to the Kingdom of France, Jews were asked to leave or to convert to Catholicism.

Not far, the lands owned by the Pope, especially, a region called Comtat Venassin remained a shelter from them until the French Revolution. They became the "Jews of the Pope" They found freedom of worship and religion in this area. However, these were difficult times and there was a lot of discrimination against these Jewish communities. They had to wear a distinctive sign: the Rouelle or Wheel and later a Yellow hat for men and ladies had to put a small piece of yellow fabric on their headwear.

In the middle ages Jews were allowed to work in many different fields, there were doctors, surgeons, masons, tailors but in the 16th C they were excluded from a lot of professions and little by little had to specialize in 3 businesses, usury which was forbidden to Christians, second hand goods and old fabrics.

After a while, Jews had to live in a "Carrière ", a Provençal word for street, separate from the Christian section and closed at night by a chain, and later a gate. The space was very limited in this narrow street with high houses and therefore life was not easy. Hence, there is a lot to learn and discover in Provence, a lot of history, old synagogues like in Carpentras, Cavaillon, remains of the Jewish quarters, old cemeteries


Centre Communautaire d'Aix en Provence
3 rue de Jerusalem
Tel: 04 42 26 69 39

Alsace area

The large synagogue in Colmar, home to the Jewish community of that city


1784 Census of Jews in Alsace

Census of 1836 of the district of Wissembourg (Alsace)
A CD is available. Lots of links at this site.

1836: by order of King Louis-Philippe 1st, town’s mayors carry out the first official registration list on their town, by applying ministerial orders. Therefore, residents are grouped into families, names, first names, age, religion, profession, civil status, addresses are noted for each resident.

The Jewish Division of The New York Public Library has a Census (in French) of the
"Jews of Alsace from 1784"





Jewish Communities





Jews in Ensisheim (Alsace) in the 18th century
Denis INGOLD describes in detail how Jews came back to Ensisheim after the Habsburg possessions in Alsace were returned to the King of France after the Thirty Years' War (1648). Later, the Jews migrated again to more attractive and welcoming cities like Breisach and Metz



Arles is a town in France, approximately 30 miles south of Avignon. Arles is a city and commune in the south of France, in the Bouches-du-Rhône department, of which it is a sub prefecture, in the former province of Provence. According to a Jewish legend, one of three rudderless ships bearing Jewish exiles arrived in Arles after the destruction of the Second Temple. It is said that Jews sang psalms at the funeral of Hilary, Bishop of Arles, in 449. The first documented reference to Jews in the town relates that defense of part of the wall was entrusted to them during a siege.






AVIGNON (sometimes called in Hebrew Ir ha-gefanim "city of grapes"; gefen = vigne, i.e., vine), capital of the department of Vaucluse, southeastern France, formerly part of *Provence. Avignon was the residence of the popes for some years after 1309.

During World War II, many Jewish refugees, especially from Alsace, settled in Avignon. According to a census of June 1941, 300 Jews were living there. But on April 17, 1943, several Jewish families were arrested and deported.

Since World War II

North African Jews brought the Jewish population to 500 in 1960 and to almost 2,000 in 1968. There is a synagogue of mixed rite, Ashkenazi and Sephardi, and various communal and educational institutions. Avignon is the seat of the Consistoire Israélite de Vaucluse, which covers the department comprised of the ancient communities of the Comtat Venaissin – Cavaillon, *Carpentras, and L'Isle-sur-Sorgue (no Jewish population today).

A 19th-century synagogue, built on the site of a much older one that had been destroyed by a fire, reflects the ancient roots of Jewish culture in Avignon

Alsace - History of


The whole of the region of Alsace is rich in sites of Jewish heritage, with the first Jews having moved to the area around the tenth century. With over 200 sites on record, Alsace boasts an exceptionally dense Jewish heritage. It bears witness to the multi-cultural wealth of Alsace and the region's pride of place in the history of Judaism in France.


Alsace and Lomza Genealogy


Alsace-Lorraine-German Empire West 1882 




Arnold, Behra, Fuchs, Grunewald, Koller, Knecht, Pering and more Family names, but all information is displayed in French 

In 1689, there were 522 Jewish families in the region.  By 1716, their numbers had doubled and by 1740, there were 2,215.  The Jews could not own property and were excluded from guilds.  Jews became grain brokers, cattle and horse dealers, peddlers and money lenders.  

During the French Revolution, about 22,500 Jewish villagers, more than half the Jewish population of France, were scattered throughout Alsace.  A great article about the Alsatian Jews can be found in the May, 2003 Hadassah Magazine.

Personalities from Alsace
Leon Blum, the first Jewish French prime minister.  Captain Alfred Dreyfus.  Andre Maurois, writer.  The Marx brothers.  Mime Marcel Marceau. Cerf-Berr, ancestor of publisher Bennet Cerf, was the brother-in-law of Rabbi David Sintzheim, who was appointed president of the Sanhedrin by Napoleon in 1807


Regional Special Interest Groups
have Alsace information and links.  The site includes links to Bohemia-Moravia SIG, 


Denmark SIG, German-Jewish SIG, Hungary SIG and Stammbaum - German SIG


"Scenes of Jewish Life in Alsace
Authored by Daniel Stauben (pen name for Augste Eidal).  Published by Joseph Simon/Pangloss Press. The book captures Jewish country life.

Tourists can see more than 200 Jewish sites by contacting the Agence de Development Touristique du Bas-Rhin (ADT) in Strasbourg


The GenAmi French Genealogy Society
has quite a number of documents ever printed for Alsace and a lot for Lorraine; all the documents about Jews of Vaucluse (Provence) and also Paris and they offer to answer questions.  For research in France, especially in Paris for 20th century, members may be helped by professional genealogists if they wish, whose work they can guide and follow.  Contact: Micheline Guttmann, GenAmi

Jews had to be authorized to live in France and had to pay special taxes.  So there are official papers in the Archives concerning them.  For instance, the Ghetto of Cavaillon was opened in 1453, the one in Carpentras in 1461.  In 1600, 450 Jews were living in Carpentras.  In Bordeaux, the oldest naturalization papers (lettres de naturalite) are dated 1550 (see G. Nahon)Another source are cemeteries. Other sources include Notarial archives (Notarial acts concerning the Jews of Orange from the 14th century exist in Rome)

In Portugal, a source is the Inquisition proceedings.

Concerning the fact that Jews could not write or read: very few Jewish registers have been preserved, but the reason is not that they were illiterate.  Most of the male Jews could read in Hebrew; they had to do so for their Bar Mitzvah.  Communities were organized and each had a rabbi, a court, a treasurer.  All these people, at least, could read and write.

The 10th to 16th centuries are for the Jews, the great period of intellectual movements from Rashi to Isaac Louria, a lot of texts influencing not only the Jews have been written. A lot of books have been published concerning the organizations of the communities as well as concerning the intellectual movements.  Some titles are in English (there are a lot of others, if you can read French):


"The Heroic Age of Franco German Jewry"
Authored by A. Agus and published in New York by Yeshiva University Press in 1969

"Medieval Jewry in Northern France: A Political and Social History
Authored by R. Chazan and published in Baltimore by The John Hopkins University Press in 1973; J. Edwards, "The Jews in Christian Europe", 1400-1700 published in London, N.Y. by Routledge in 1988. 

"Zellwiller, La petite Communaute dans la Prairie"
(the little community in the fields) which names many of the families who once lived in Zellwiller.  Some came from other places of Alsace, Lorraine, Baden, etc.  Contact GenAmi should you be doing research in Alsace.  The publication is 170 pages and last quoted price was 20 Euros (about $20) + shipping.  Email:  asso.genami@free.fr





As the Germans marched toward the tiny French hamlet of Autrans, 10-year-old Eva Perlman (nee Gutmann) watched as an obviously frightened 17-year-old boy fled from a sawmill into the woods. The Germans shot him on sight. It was 1942, and the boy wasn’t even Jewish, Perlman says.

Located in this village, which is located just north of Grenoble, was a Catholic residential school run by Georgette and Joseph Menthonnex known as "Clairefontaine".  A number of Jewish children were hidden there from the Nazis until August, 1944, when the area was liberated.


Inside of the Synagogue of Cavaillon

Capital of the department of Vaucluse, France; formerly seat of the papal court. The first settlement of Jews in Avignon goes back probably to the second century of the common era, a few years after the destruction of Bethar by Hadrian. In 390 they were already sufficiently numerous to take a leading part in a revolt against Bishop Stephen. As usual almost everywhere, they congregated in certain portions of the town, known later as the Jewry, or "Carrière des Juifs." It lay at first on the banks of the Rhône, along the slope of the Rocher, and exactly opposite the papal palace; its narrow lanes are still called the "Reille Juiverie" and the "Petite Reille." There are still shown the remains of an ancient building declared, with or without reason, to have been the first synagogue. But in the course of the thirteenth century, this quarter, having become too crowded, was demolished by Louis VIII., and the Jews were allotted a new and more spacious location in the heart of the city, corresponding with the present Place de Jerusalem and the Rues Abraham and Jacob. This location was covered with buildings, four, and sometimes five, stories high, and was intersected by narrow lanes, for the most part unclean, and lacking air and light. Two gates, opened only in the daytime, communicated with the outer world. The synagogue, or "escole," was toward the southeast. It was burned down in 1844, and the present building, of modern construction, arose in its place

In the 15th century, the Jews of Cavaillon were forced to live in a ghetto of a few streets ("carriero" in Provençal), closed each evening for the night. In the 17th century, with the Counter-Reformation, this measure intensified. Exclusion, insecurity, promiscuity and hygiene problems were part of every day life for the inhabitants.







Bas-Rhin  Alsace

History of the Jews of Alsace; Site of Alsatian Judaism; Some notes on Schirrhoffen, Cemetery information; Reichshoffen history and its Jewish Community and nearby Hagenau village plus photos and maps.


History of Jews in Alsace

Mémorial de la Déportation et de la Résistance des Juifs dus Bas-Rhin

Between 27 March 1942 and 22 August 1944, 84 deportation transports of Jews and other citizens took place from the present soil of France to the extermination camps in the Polish General government. These “convois” usually departed from the Durchgangslager Drancy, just northeast of Paris. Most of these “convois” went to Auschwitz. The deportation transports numbered 50 – 53, that took place in March 1943, had the extermination camp Sobibor as their destination. 





In Bayeux, the Normandy Battle Memorial Museum, Boulevard Fabian-Ware ... Europe's largest Jewish museum, it covers the entire panorama of German- Jewish history




Belfort (Photo credit: CC By-SA, Damien Boucard, Wikimedia Commons)

Belfort, capital of the territory of Belfort, eastern France. A grant of privilege conferred on the city in 1307 authorized Jewish residence. Persecutions of Jews living in Belfort are recorded in 1336. They were subsequently expelled and readmitted in 1689. During the French Revolution anti-Jewish excesses took place in the region, but the Jews in Belfort remained unharmed. The Jewish population increased considerably after the Franco-Prussian war (1870–71) with the arrival of Jews from Alsace-Lorraine (then annexed to the German Empire) who wished to remain French

A story of the Jews of Belfort by Laurence Tourot, Professor of History at Belfort and Jewish Genealogy in Belfort, Some Families Studied by Micheline Guttmann - is available in GenAmi, number 19

http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource /judaica/ejud_0002_0003_0_02346.html



Cimetière israëlite de Bischheim-Hoenheim

Jewish museum and Mikva
Cour des Boecklin at 17 rue Nationale,
67800 Bischheim.
Tel: +33 (0)3 88 81 49 47, Fax: +33 (0)3 88 81 61 53.
The Mikvah has restored spiral staircase from the 16th century. The David Sintzheim Hall has ritual items as well as the history of the
Jewish community of Bischheim (for a long time, one of the largest of Bas-Rhin), but the community probably used Rosenwiller's cemetery part of the time.

Bischheim's Jews traded or worked in Strasbourg long before becoming a town with Jewish identity in and of itself. Historical documents from the beginning of the 17th century show Jewish presence. Well-known is Cerf-Berr of Médelsheim and his family, purveyor to armies, who was established in Bischheim even before The Revolution (by 1750). His predominant role in the emancipation of Jews and philanthropic work was well known. The 1774 Jewish population was 39 families and 210 inhabitants. In 1784, that number rose to 473 individuals in 79 families. An imperial decree dated July 20th, 1808 made the Jews adopt fixed surnames in the Registry office. In 1850, the Jewish population was 759. In 1936, the community joined with Jews residing in Schiltigheim to number 149 persons. 25 Jews disappeared between 1940 and 1944. In 1959, 52 families lived here. The Community of Hoenheim joined Bischheim recently.

The synagogue and community center are located at 9 Place de la Synagogue. A Sephardic community exists at 1 route de Brumath. A museum has very ancient objects of worship and a ritual bath older still on Court de Boecklin. [January 2008]


In 1775, Jews in Grossenbiessen bought ground from the village of Mackenheim intended to enlarge their graveyard which existed in 1608.] The actual cemetery at Bischheim dates from 1803. 

Three miles from Strasbourg
Musee du Bain Rituel Juif
Cour des Boecklin
17 rue Nationale
Telephone: 333-88-81-49-47. 
There is a sixteenth century restored mikve with 48 spiraling steps leading down to the ritual bath.


"Le Memorbuch"



BLOIS, capital of the department of Loir-et-Cher, north-central France. The earliest information concerning Jews in Blois dates from 992

Blois which was built overlooking the Loire river itself. It was here, in 1171, that the town's Jewish community was accused of a murder, and thirty-one out of the town's forty strong community were murdered

In 1171 the Jews of Blois, France, were accused of having crucified a Christian child during the Passover holydays and of having thrown the corpse into the Loire. This is the first time that the accusation of ritual murder was made in continental Europe. It is difficult to account for its occurrence just at this time unless it is a reverberation of the William of Norwich tale of a generation before. The accusation that Jews require Christian blood for their Passover ritual has been made against the Jews from that time on down to the present day in practically all lands and has cost the lives of hundreds of innocent Jewish men, women, and children








As Bordeaux was part of the English territory of Aquitaine until 1453, the medieval Jewish community in Bordeaux was not affected by the expulsions that occurred elsewhere in what is now modern day France in 1144 and 1181. Little remains of the medieval community, Walk along Rue Cheverus, which was formerly known as Arrua Judega, and formed the center of the local medieval Jewish community. The nineteenth-century gray stone synagogue, and the memorial to the Bordeaux Jews who died in the Holocaust. Here, the  Portuguese Consul General Aristides de Sousa Mendes who saved over 10,000 Jews and 20,000 other refugees over a three day period in June 1940 by countermanding his governments orders and issuing Portuguese visas.

Bordeaux - Circumcisions from 1706 to 1793

Bordeaux - Births from 1738 to 1792

Bordeaux - Marriages from 1775 to 1792

Bordeaux - Deaths from 1739 to 1792



Bouxwiller is a commune in the Bas-Rhin department  in Alsace in north-eastern 
France. Among the city's sight is the Musée Judéo-Alsacien, dedicated to the 
History of Jews in Alsace, and located in the former synagogue.

Located 28 miles from Strasburg.  There is the Musee Judeo-Alsacien 62a grand-rue;  Telephone 333-88-70-97-17;  Open mid-March to mid-September, Tuesday to Friday 10-12 and 2 to 5, Sundays 2 to 6; closed on Jewish holidays.  In winter, open for groups by appointment.  This small town has a synagogue



Au XVIIIe siècle, Buschwiller compte une importante communauté juive. La synagogue bâtie en 1790 disparaît à la fin du XIXe siècle. P1060155

Buschwiller has 1 postcode / zip code and is located in the district of Alsace, in the county of Haut-Rhin, in district of Arrondissement de Mulhouse. The District of Buschwiller is Alsace. The County of Buschwiller is Haut-Rhin. The District of Buschwiller is Arrondissement de Mulhouse. 

Buschwiller is a small rural town far enough since the original Snya found the remains of a Roman road that connected the city of Augst Switzerland today in Augusta Raurica Roman. The name comes from German meaning busch bush and Willie villa. The earliest known coat of arms dating from the late seventeenth century. We find the first traces of the municipality in 1096 under the name Bustwilre. Buschwiller has long belonged to the Earl of Ferrette. In the eighteenth century the village has a large Jewish community 201 members in 1784. The synagogue was built and then disappeared in the late nineteenth century

Contact Terry Zakine-Cerf.

Regional Special Interest Groups
have Alsace information and links.  The site includes links to Bohemia-Moravia SIG, Denmark SIG, German-Jewish SIG, Hungary SIG and Stammbaum - German SIG at


A synagogue (built in 1790) is represented on a mizrah from the end of the 18th century; restoration in 1870; exist until (...) Synagogue, French Heritage monument to Buschwiller, Haut Rhin



CAEN, capital of the department of Calvados, France. The medieval Jewish community of Caen lived in the Rue des Juifs between Rue Desmoneux and the Rue de l'Eglise Julien, in the vicinity of which a property called "Jardin aux Juifs" (perhaps the medieval cemetery) still exists. In 1252 the Jews were expelled from Caen but they returned later in fairly large numbers, and in 1301 the Jews paid a total of over 700 livres in tallage, as compared to a little more than 462 livres in 1217. They were expelled once more by Philip the Fair in 1306. The chief rabbinical authority of Caen was R. Joseph Porat (or Joseph b. Moses; mid-12th century), also called Don Bendit, author of a commentary on the Talmud and perhaps also of a commentary on the Pentateuch.

There is no precise information on the fate of Jews of Caen during World War II, but one street bears the name of a Jewish physician, Peker, deported in 1943. [Bernhard Blumenkranz]

In 1951 a Jewish community was established which provided religious services and instruction for its approximately 30 Jewish families. Since that year, the Jewish population has grown rapidly, with an estimated 700 persons living in Caen in 1969. A combined synagogue and community center was inaugurated in 1966.


William the Bastard aka William The Conqueror - (inscribed as such on a Memorial at the Caen Castle) has his name inscribed on a plaque there.  The Castle is located across the street from a shul.


"A Travel Guide to Jewish Europe"
Authored by Ben G. Frank ... "and in Caen, almost entirely rebuilt after the war, there are about 100 Jewish families."

Forgotten Camps


Holocaust (Shoah)




The Pertuis FFI gave Helene Deschamps this permanent Underground pass for her trek through southern France during WW II.  Photo from Prologue Magazine of Fall, 1992.

North of Moissac has a Resistance Museum on the Place General de Gaulle. Its second floor is devoted to refugees and displaced persons. 



"Bad Faith: A Forgotten History of Family Fatherland and Vichy France"
available noting those who disappeared from Cahors as well as those transported to Auschwitz.


Carpentras Synagogue

Carpentras has been an important center of French Judaism, and is home to the oldest
synagogue in France (1367), which still holds services. In May 1990, there was a desecration of the Jewish cemetery (see French and European Nationalist Party)). The Comtat Venaissin owned by the Pope until the French Revolution. Walk in the footsteps of the "Jews of the Pope" and we will discover the 18th C  Synagogue of Carpentras built in a very amazing style. This is still a working synagogue and it is one of the oldest in Europe.

Located south and near Nimes. (Papal-controlled France) Jewish community. Gentiles resented the Jews who displayed their wealth, mostly because of their dress. On March 22, 1740, in the town of Carpentras, an ordinance was passed dictating what Jews could wear.  Jewish men were forbidden to wear wigs with few exceptions.  Jews, traveling great distances, were permitted to dress in a special wig making it less possibility for them being singled out for harassment.



"The Carpentras Affair
Authored by Jane Krame and published in The New Yorker, November 6, 2000 (Page 58-75).  This is an interesting article about "the oldest Jewish cemetery in use in Europe.", French Anti-Semitism, French politics, "the Pope's Jews", North African Jews, etc.  The story concerns a horrible desecration in the cemetery in 1990 and follows what happened to the cemetery, the town, France, Jews, etc. afterwards.  From a posting by Alex Skolnick

The Jewish community dates from the twelfth century but were expelled around 1322. Some time around 1343 they returned and re-built their synagogue. Today the synagogue shows little of its medieval origins as it was rebuilt in the eighteenth century, and restored again in 1929 and 1958. The synagogue is the last relic of a Jewish ghetto, which in 1782 numbered around 2,000 people, but by 1935 had fallen to only 35


The Synagogue was built in 1367 and restored in the 18th century by architect Antoine D’Allemand. It is the oldest synagogue in France still in activity. It stands as testimony to the Jewish community which sought pontifical protection after being persecuted in the Kingdom of France, and settled here in the Comtat Venaissin in the 13th century.

The Jewish neighborhood, called carrière, was set up in 1461 in the heart of the city by the Consuls, and was abandoned after the Comtat became part of France. This Synagogue remains, mute testimony to past and present Judeo-Provencal culture.

The discreet façade dates from 1909. The prayer room has an 18th century Baroque décor, with pillars and faux marble. The ground floor holds the oldest parts of the building, the ritual baths and 2 bakeries, one reserved for daily bread, the other for the preparation of the unleavened azyme bread, and a room dedicated to Jerusalem within the prayer space.

Open Monday to Thursday: 10-12 and 3-5. Friday: 10-12 and 3-4.
Doors open every 30 minutes.
Closed on Saturday, Sunday and Jewish holidays.
Guided visits during the school holidays.
Contact: Tel : +33 (0)4 90 63 39 97

Not to be missed: The Jewish Music Festival in early August, in the special setting of the Synagogue and the Hôtel-Dieu interior courtyard. A unique event in France, presenting all the various influences of Jewish music




Built in 1772 for a community of around 200, the synagogue now houses the Jewish Comtat Venaissin Museum which is located in the old bakery and contains prayer books, torah instruments and relics of the earlier fourteenth-century synagogue. The old Jewish section where the small Jewish community of Cavaillon lived is well preserved. This will help you understand the life of these people until the French Revolution: ghettos and harsh conditions even if they were “protected” by the Pope.  The 18th century Synagogue built by the community is a moving testimony left by the “Jews of the Pope“. The style is very special and it looks more like a private noble house in rococo style than to a synagogue. In the basement you will also see the part that was reserved to women and the old oven where the community used to make the “Coudoles” which is the Provencal word for Matzos


The French War Cemetery Cernay contains 1405 graves from the Second World War. The cemetery was founded in the First World War. From that war there are 2304 French war graves and 65 graves with another nationality.

Genealogical research between 1550 and 1730 is discussed in an article in the "Abstract of GenAmi number 22" mentioned in a posting to JewishGen



There are at least 15 Jewish graves


  Colmar  (Kolmar)


Colmar was first settled in the middle of the twelfth century, suffered from a number of persecutions in the Middle Ages, the worst of which was when the whole Jewish community was burnt at the stake in 1349 as they were believed to be passing on the Black Death. The site of their deaths is still known as Judenloch. Today Colmar is the seat of the chief rabbinate of Alsace

In Alsace and the provinces wine capital and second largest city.  Chief town of Upper Alsace, Germany, on the Lauch and the Fecht. At the beginning of the thirteenth century Colmar had a large community of Jews, who enjoyed the favor of the municipal authorities. They occupied a special quarter, where they had a synagogue. The building was destroyed by fire in 1279.

It has the Musee Bartholdi featuring the sculptures of Auguste Bartholdi, creator of the Statue of Liberty.  The Katz Room contains Jewish ritual objects. There is also another Jewish identification - the rue de juiverie (Jews Street), which marks the area of Jewish residence in the 14th century.

Jewish Community
There is a small Jewish Center at 9 impasse du Chardonnet, near the Place d'Italia


A Meyer Marc Haas was born here in 1797.  His sons, Jacques, Nathan, Leopold and Benjamin founded two watch making companies in 1848, one in New York, the other in Paris and Geneva Switzerland.  The French company closed in 1938, but the Swiss company is still active.


The synagogue conducts a daily service.
1 rue de la Cigogne
Phone: 333 - 89- 41 - 38 - 29 
Email: consistoireisraelite.colmar@wanadoo.fr 


Right at the entrance of the canyons Gorges de Bagorèse, Correns is a pretty village built part on the right bank of the river Argens and part on the left bank. This is a good place to stop in the Centre Var, lost in the country, and far from the main roads.

Correns is surrounded by aromatic hills and is sheltered by a chain of mount called the Massif du Bessillon. The river Argens rushes out of the Gorges du Vallon Sourn straight into the village. In the center one can find many signs of the long and interesting past of Correns. Also there are troglodyte dwellings and Neolithic caves.
The Mayor, Michael Latz in 2008, is Jewish






A southeastern Paris suburb with a Jewish school




This eastern French city is home to one of France's largest and oldest communities of Ashkenazi Jews (about 70% of the Jewish population of 12,000, plus 3,000 in surrounding town.) A cemetery was established at the beginning of the thirteenth century with the oldest remaining epitaph is from 1213. The area around the Place de la Republique once held a Jewish cemetery. The synagogue is not mentioned until 1292, according to a May 2003 Hadassah Magazine article by Ben G. Frank. [January 2008]

Up to French Revolution, Jews were forbidden in villages dependent on the Evêché of Strasbourg: Barr, Bernardvillé, Blienschwiller, Goxwiller, Heiligenstein, Hohwald, Mittelbergheim, Nothalten, Reichsfeld, Saint-Pierre. Even after the Revolution, Jews never became established in these hostile villages, except Barr and one family to Saint-Pierre. They were tolerated on the condition of paying specific taxes in the belongings of the lords of Andlau.

In 1784, they found about 800
Jews in these seven villages: 29 in Stotzheim, 68 in Epfig, 94 in Valff, 108 in Itterswiller, 129 in Dambach, 157 in Zellwiller, 185 in Ottrott. In 1808, their number was 930 and in 1851 of 1200, but none lived in Barr. In 1920, no more than 385 Jews remained in the countryside of Barr and Bernstein, of which 125 were in Barr, about a third of the community restarted in 1850. The census of Strasbourg went from 68 Jews in 1784 to 8000 in 1851, the villages having emptied in favor of Strasbourg.

Synagogue de la Paix and Community Center
1a rue du Grand-Rabbin-Rene Hirschler at Avenue de la Pix
Telephone 333-88-14-46-50


3 route d ' Oberhausbergen  
This Jewish cemetery, the largest Jewish Cemetery in the Strasbourg area)  was recently desecrated. In 1911 occupation of this new cemetery and on April 12, 2002, the cemetery was desecrated, where numerous tombstones with swastikas were sprayed. 


Dornach   (Switzerland)

Dornach , a small town in the suburbs of Mulhouse, The first synagogue in the building which still exists today. Dornach became the seat of a rabbinate in 1919. The synagogue today is closed. It was built in the 19th century.  In 1899, there were 12,701 inhabitants of whom half were Jewish.





"Lippincott's New Gazetteer: A Complete Pronouncing Gazetteer"
Authored by Angelo and Louis Heilprin

Contact Terry Zakine-Cerf


Yizkor Book

Regional Special Interest Groups
have Alsace information and links.  The site includes links to Bohemia-Moravia SIG, Denmark SIG, German-Jewish SIG, Hungary SIG and Stammbaum - German SIG at


Drancy  (See also Holocaust page)


The Drancy camp, named after the northeastern suburb of Paris in which it was located, was established by the Germans in August 1941 as an internment camp for foreign Jews in France; it later became the major transit camp for the deportations of Jews from France. Until July 1, 1943, French police staffed the camp under the overall control of the German Security Police. In July 1943 the Germans took direct control of the Drancy camp and SS officer Alois Brunner became camp commandant.

Jews were assembled here for deportation by convoy.  A Paris suburb where a memorial to the tens of thousands of French Jews who were shipped to Auschwitz stands today in their memory. There were a number of convoys (around 50) that departed for Auschwitz in 1943 including Convoy No. 62 consisting of 1,199 Jews.





Goersdorf Synagogue

There was a Jewish presence here including a synagogue. A website that provides the perimeter town's distances around the area


List of Names deported

Guide to the Alsace and Lorraine; Jewish Communities Collection, 1809-2000



Goussainville lies a thirty minute drive north from the Notre Dame Cathedral in central Paris. In 1972 the residents of Goussainville were suddenly under the direct flight path of the newly-built Charles de Gaulle Airport. The town was now so close to the country’s largest airport in neighboring Roissy that the noise from low-flying planes became unbearable to live with. Residents of the old village watched as neighbors deserted their homes in droves, unable to stand the constant noise of the aircrafts. In the summer of 1973, during the Salon de Bourget air show taking place in the proximity of the new CDG airport, a Concorde prototype plane crashed in Goussainville, destroying several houses and a children’s school that was luckily closed on that day. All six passengers on the plane and eight people on the ground perished. By 1973, the last 200 inhabitants of Goussainville had abandoned their homes.


Le Cimetière du Père-Lachaise : lieu de mémoires…

A synagogue is located in this Paris suburb.  


Hattatt, Upper-Rhine


Hattatt is a commune in the Haut-Rhindepartment in Alsace in north-eastern France.

A list of circumcisions of the Lazare Hess translated from Hebrew is available in GenAmi number 19 







"Der juedische Friedhof in Hegenheim/Le Cimetiere Israelite de Hegenheim (Haut-Rhin)"
("The Jewish Cemetery In Preserving Home Le Ciemtiere Israelite de Hegenheim" (Haut Rhin)
Authors: Gil Huettenmeister and Lea Rog - with a colored folding plan and an inventory of all Hebrew gravestone inscriptions with German translation on CD Rome. Bound. Published by Schwabe Verlag Basel (Switzerland) in 2004 in French. 144 pages. Included in the book is a CD ROM with the translation from Hebrew to German of all the inscriptions and a "
map, where all the graves are located".  From a posting by Ariane Mil Zurich, Switzerland
ISBN 3-7965-1899-0 

The Jewish cemetery of Hegenheim exists since 1673 and has 2850 tombs



An exhibition in Soultz (Haut-Rhin) displayed a tax register of 1612 where the name Moyses Dreyfues appears and the picture of a nameless gravestone of 1624 from the Jungholtz (Haut-Rhin cemetery recognized as Moise Dreyfus's (viz. reproductions or analyses) according to an article appearing in the issue 88 of Revue du Cercle de Genealogie Jive dated October-December 2006.





Salomon Schüler (1870-1938), a prominent rabbi from Hegenheim to Saint-Louis (Alsace)
Lea Rogg presents the life and actions of Salomon Schuler.  He was born in Berlin and became the first titular rabbi of the Jewish community of Saint-Louis (Upper Rhine, next to the Swiss border).  He represented a traditional judaism having been educated in the Yeshivah Hildescheimer in Berlin, an orthodox rabinic seminar where he has received a rigorous education



There was a Jewish presence here and there is a Jewish cemetery.  Some tombstones were spray-painted with swastikas and anti-Semitic slogans in 2004.

Cemetery  ( serves both the villages of Herrlishelm and Hattstatt)


Interior of Ingwiller synagogue

Located in Alsace



In 1816, the community acquired land for a synagogue completed in 1822 on remains of the castle of
Ingwiller. The Jewish community of Ingwiller reached almost 500 by 1850, but the rabbi was not acknowledged officially. Ingwiller never managed to acquire a rabbinical seat. This place of worship, first a private home, was transformed into a true synagogue by 1870, then enlarged in September 1891 and restored again in 1903. The building is located on Cour du Château.
The probably early 19th century Jewish cemetery lies adjoining the General Cemetery on Général Philippot  in the direction of Bitche on the Faubourg (leading to the route de Bitche). The two parts of the cemetery are separated by a wall. The Jewish cemetery is about 2 m higher than the General (Christian) 

Le Chambon

Jewish children sheltered by the Protestant population of the village of Le Chambon-sur-Lignon.
,   1941.  US Holocaust Memorial Museum


The small village of Le Chambon sur Lignon nestles in the hilly Vivarais region south of St Etienne, and was the location for numerous heroic acts during the Second World War when the villages community followed the advice of their pastor Andre Trocme and gave shelter to Jews. Around 5,000 Jews either passed through Le Chambon on their way to Switzerland, or found permanent shelter in the village or surrounding area during the war


Lens is a commune in the Pas-de-Calais department in northern France. It is one of France's large Picarde cities along with Lille, Valenciennes, Amiens, Roubaix, Tourcoing, Arras, and Douai. The inhabitants are called Lensois. Wikipedia


Lunel (Lunar City - Located in southern France)

Town Hall

Lunel is a commune in the Hérault department in southern France. According to legend, Lunel was founded by Jews from Jericho in first century and an ancient synagogue may be seen there. Lunel is located 21 km east of Montpellier and 28 km southwest of Nîmes


The term Hachmei Provence refers to the Jewish rabbis of Provence, a province in southern 
France, which was  a great Torah center in the times of the Tosafists. The phrase literally means the wise of Provence.

In matters of Halacha, as well as in their traditions and custom, the Provençal rabbis occupy an intermediate position between the Sephardic tradition of the neighboring Spanish scholars, and the Old French (similar to the Ashkenazic) tradition represented by the Tosafists.

At present there is not a single Jewish family in Lunel, and only a few vestiges of the synagogue remain in the former Hôtel de Bernis (now belonging to A. Ménard) in the Rue Alphonse Ménard. According to a document in the municipal archives (case 5, book i., No. 2319) the cemetery was situated on the Mas Desports road



Lyon Region

A Jewish Home for children in Lyon

"Presence Juive dans la Cite"
A booklet on the history of the Jewish Communities in this area is described in Revue du Cercle de Genealogie Juive #68 Email:  office@genealoj.org
For French speaking secretariat@genealoj.org



Jews were living in the suburb of Caluire, a suburb of Lyon. A web page re "Klaus Barbie - The Butcher of Lyon"  The town was liberated in September 3, 1944.

There is a synagogue in the Jewish neighborhood of La Duchere. In April, 2002, a car was driven through the large wooden doors of the synagogue by 15 hooded men.  The President of this Jewish community is Maurice Obadia.



35 Km in the NW of Strasbourg



  This Sofer (scribe) in Marseille, France, is writing a Torah scroll. A kosher Torah scroll must be
  written by   hand by a trained scribe 

The second largest city in France and the third metropolitan area is France's largest commercial port. Marseille is the capital of the Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur region, as well as the capital of the Bouches-du-Rhône department. Population: 800,000 with large North African immigrant population. A Jewish Genealogy meeting is held every month at the Centre Edmond Fleg (Daniele Fareau).  There are four SIGs now available in MarseilleNorthern Africa, Ottoman Empire, Spain and Comtat Venaissin.  Contact cgjgenefr@aol.com for further information.



(or Harry) Bingham, IV
For over fifty years, the U. S. State Department resisted any attempt to honor Bingham. For them he was an insubordinate member of the US diplomatic service, a dangerous maverick who was eventually demoted. Now, after his death, he has been officially recognized as a hero.
defiance of his bosses in Washington, he granted over 2,500 USA visas to Jewish and other refugees, including the artists Marc Chagall and Max Ernst and the family of the writer Thomas Mann. He also sheltered Jews in his Marseilles home, and obtained forged identity papers to help Jews in their dangerous journeys across Europe. He worked with the French under ground to smuggle Jews out of France into Franco's Spain or across the Mediterranean and even contributed to their expenses out of his own pocket. In 1941, Washington lost patience with him. He was sent to Argentina, where later he continued to annoy his superiors by reporting on the movements of Nazi war criminals.

An arson fire in April, 2002, completely destroyed the 4,800 square foot Or Aviv synagogue.


Metz   (See also Moselle)

Alphonse Levy, the cattle dealer

Located in the province of Lorraine, Metz is an ancient city in France. Jews came to live there more than a thousand years ago. There are records of Jewish inhabitants in Metz dating back to the 9th century. Jews lived here from the sixteenth century or in the Comtat Venaissin, and records are known to exist.



Jewish Surnames


Group portrait of Jewish youth at the Hotel du Moulin in Moissac


Located in southwest France (due west of Albi) a Jewish couple  saved some 150 Jews by hiding them in a children's home run by France's Jewish Scout movement.  Between 1939 and 1943, more than 500 non-French speaking Jewish children passed through the home. The Abbey houses an untitled Marc Chagall piece.

During World War II, Moissac, in south of France, housed Jewish children. 500 children from everywhere in Europe were secretly welcomed at Shatta and Bouli Simon’s. Beyond the heroic action of the couple, the children escaped from the Nazism thanks to an entire village which never says anything about the house




Information is available at The Jewish cemetery of lisle sur la Sorgue.  






The Jewish site of worship and ritual in Montpellier

There is a building that contained a synagogue.  It is located just outside of Paris.






Moselle (Metz)

The Jewish Cemetery is a private cemetery belonging to the Jewish community in Metz. It is less than 3 kilometers from Metz Central station, and south of Chantieres French National Cemetery.




"Jewish Cemeteries in Moselle"
700 pages showing in detail the 50 Jewish Cemeteries of the Moselle Departement.  14,500 names are indexed, making research easy.  This information is located in the Revue du Cercle de Genealogies Juive #68 
Email:  office@genealoj.org For French speaking secretariat@genealoj.org


Mulhouse (Mühlhausen)

Mulhouse Synagogue

Located in Alsace and founded in 803 AD.




Rabbi Salomon Moock




Nancy  (Meurthe-et-Moselle, Lorraine)

Photo of Interior of the Nancy Synagogue

Nancy is the capital of Meurthe-et-Moselle department, northeastern France and the former capital of the Duchy of LorraineJews acquired a cemetery at nearby Laxou.


The imposing city burying ground is located at 2 av. de Boufflers has a burial list in a box near the entrance dated July 21, 2005 with several thousands graves listed in alphabetical order of the deceased, with the maiden names for married women, birth and death year and location in the cemetery. Contact the office of the (Jewish) Community at (++33) 3 83 32 10 67. Note that this cemetery contains graves of people born in the whole of Alsace and Lorraine and deceased not only at Lunéville but also in neighboring villages. At its entrance is a memorial to the Shoah in Nancy.

In 1987, as part of the bicentenary of the synagogue, twenty schoolchildren planted twenty bushes as a memorial to the twenty Jewish children kidnapped from their shelter by the occupying Nazis and who were then deported without return to death camps. The name of every missing child is inscribed on a small marker placed at each tree. 

has photos and information in
http://www.iajgsjewishcemeteryproject.org/france/nancy-meurthe-et-moselle-lorraine.htm l 

Holocaust  (Shoah)



The towns of the French Riviera, such as Nice, shown here, changed from quiet resorts in peacetime to crowded military bases in wartime.  From Prologue Magazine, Fall, 1992 issue.

There are about 30,000 Jews in the city. A Jewish Genealogy meeting is held every first Thursday from 3 to 5 pm in FSJU, 6 rue d'Angleterre.

Death Certificates
(even request copies of birth and marriage documents if they occurred in Nice) can be obtained by writing. You can write in English, if your French isn't good enough.

Marie de Nice
5, rue Hotel de Ville
06000 NICE France

Jewish Community

Jewish Resistance
There is a memorial in Nice, honoring Raymond Fresco, who was captured by the Nazis in November, 1943, tortured for 15 days and executed when he refused to reveal any information.





This town, and the Riss family name is mentioned in the Revue du Cercle de Genealogie Juive, Issue 89, January-March 2007.

Jewish Families Who Lived In Niederhagenthal


Guide to the Alsace and Lorraine: Jewish Communities Collection, 1809-2000

Nimes List

Jean Pierre Bloch Nationality: Jewish Residence: Nimes, du Gard France Death: November

Capital of the Gard département, the city has a population of 130,000 and derives its name from Nemausus 'Fro' The Source''. Denim fabric gets its name from this city (de Nîmes).


A list of people's names available for free to members of GenAmi.  This list concerns people who were born or married in Nimes and the Provence before the year 1900.  Information available from 



Synagogue built in 1876

Only 20 minutes south of Strasbourg, there is a street known as the rue des Juifs,  a street that contains wood-framed houses with doorposts lined with timber.  They were once filled with mezuzot.  The synagogue is on rue de Selestat.  Before WW II, there were over 100 Jews here; about 40 died in the holocaust  (Shoah).  There are 26 Jews living here now, the rest moved or assimilated.


Paille (Strohstadt)


The city called "City of Paille", or Strohstadt in German, had a very ephemeral existence. Situated on an island in the Rhine, it was built in 1680 by the French after they took possession of the fortress of Breisach. Its real name was at first Ville-Neuve-de-Brisach, then later on Saint-Louis-les-Brisach. In 1697, under the Treaty of Rijswijk, it was entirely destroyed and dismantled: Omni no fragmented and solo aequabitur. See GenAmi No. 17 (September 2001). Jews settled there, mostly coming from nearby villages on both banks of the river, and a community was founded in 1692.

List of Families


List of Jews from the city of Paille

 Palatinate (A region)




"Juedisches Leben in der Pfalz" (Jewish life in Palatinate)
Authored by Bernhard KUKATZKI



A total of 68,469 yellow badges for Jews have been issued in the city of Paris, according to official German figures published in the Paris press today. The figures reveal that in all of occupied France there are today 78,511 Jews, not including those held in concentration camps.

The data disproves the Nazi allegations that “Paris was flooded with 500,000 Jews.” It establishes that there were 110,000 Jewish residents in the French capital in 1940 and that one-third of them are now either in camps or “have simply disappeared from their homes.”

There are 20 numbered districts (Arrondissements) that start in the city's geographic center and swirl out counterclockwise.

The city's most famous Jewish neighborhood is in the Marais and is known as the Pletzl, Yiddish for little Place. This 4th Arrondissements district (Metro: St. Paul) has been home to Jews on and off since the thirteenth century. Today, though gentrification has made this one of the city's most fashionable quarters, it is still heavily Jewish and has been for nearly one hundred years

Walks in Paris in the German language   

The 19th district is the heart of the Sephardic community located in the northeastern section with some 30,000 mostly low-income Jews

Pletzl District

A Jewish neighborhood. See the Memorial of the Unknown Jewish Martyr and visit the Museum of Jewish Art and History. Its collection explores the heritage of the old Jewish communities in Europe, and also of the North African Jewish community which has done so much to revitalize Judaism in France since the Second World War

Paris & French Telephone Directories
A collection, dating from 1805, exists at the Hotel de Ville, at the Bibliotheque administrative de la ville de Paris

From 1813, the collection's directories expand out into France, Germany and the US.  From 1841, there were two volumes, one for Paris and one for the other towns.  Since 1881, each ten years, a volume for other countries is published.

Check out  this web site where you will find one of the most complete indexes of on-line phone books from over 150 countries around the world.

Nazareth Synagogue

Vice President is Jack-Yves Bohbot, a city councilor



Go to webcam Perpignan, France in Europe / France / Perpignan

A city in southern France, near the Spanish border.  Nearby Jewish communities include: Beziers, Montpellier and Toulouse.



"Women, Wealth And Community in Perpignan, c. 1250-1300: Christians, Jews And Enslaved Muslims in a Medieval Mediterranean Town
Authored by Rebecca Lynn Winer


Cippo and Synagogue
54 rue François Arago

Tel. 04 68 34 75 81
Fax 04 68 51 13 31

Centre David Mordoch
3 rue de Montescot
66000 Perpignan 
Tel. 04 68 66 91 67
President: Daniel Halimi, 


A city in southern France, near the Spanish border.  Nearby Jewish communities include: Beziers, Montpellier and Toulouse.




Poitiers (French pronunciation: [pwatje]) is a city on the Clain river in west central France. It is a commune and the capital of the Vienne department and of the  Poitou-Charentes region.




Provence was once home to a vibrant and creative Jewish community that has had lasting impact on Jewish culture. Today there is still a large Jewish presence in the area. The oldest synagogue in France is in Carpentras.  Aix-en-Provence and discover the Jewish roots of the city.

Jews, Provence is a unique cultural area. With easy and open links with both the Jewish communities in the North of France and in Spain, it created a synthesis of the Ashkenazi and Sephardi Jewish cultures, and had a profound influence on both.


Reims Synagogue




The site of the Synagogue would have been in the medieval time period no 18 rue des Elu. Some Jewish families arrived in Reims in 1820, but the community really organized only after 1870 with the arrival of Jews from Alsace and Lorraine. During the 1960s, Jews from North Africa came to establish in Reims. In 1979, the Community celebrated the centenary of its Synagogue and acquired a Mikvah in 1991.

Synagogue - Association Culturelle Israélite
Centre Communautaire
49, rue Clovis
51100 Reims
Tél: 03-26-47-68-47



Located in Alsace web page at:



Regional Special Interest Groups

have Alsace information and links.  The site includes links to Bohemia-Moravia SIG, Denmark SIG, German-Jewish SIG, Hungary SIG and Stammbaum - German SIG


Rosenwiller   (Rosheim)


There is an old Jewish cemetery. As you probably know, Rosenwiller Jewish cemetery is very big and it goes back far in time (perhaps back to 1366). Moreover it has suffered desecration on several occasions, most notably perhaps during the French Revolution; and also pillaging of monumental stone by local villagers for building use. All of these factors suggest that there is no completely reliable list of graves. To obtain the most complete and reliable information available, I suggest that you contact:
Association pour la Conservation du Cimetiere Israelite de Rosenwiller,
Consistoire Israélite du Bas-Rhin,
23 rue Sellénick,
67000 Strasbourg,

There is a book (in  French) that could contain the information you are seeking:
"Registre du cimetière israélite de Rosenwiller (1753-1980)". The blurb for this book says that it contains registration details for 5,588 Jewish graves at Rosenwiller, over the period 1753-1980. The price (including shipping and handling) varies according to where you live: in France = 36 euros; Western Europe + Israel = 42 euros; rest of the world = 49 euros.





The 1784 census of the Jews of Rosheim - authored by Jean-Pierre Kleitz and published in the Revue du Cercle de Genealogie Juive #68 Email:  office@genealoj.org
For French speaking secretariat@genealoj.org



Savigny   (Savoy)

Savigny sur orge boulevard aristide briand (Agent de police)

Spanish and Jewish prisoners of the camp from 1940 - 1942 is discussed from the review "Echos Saleviens" in the "Abstract of GenAmi number 22".  Savigny is a commune in the southern suburbs of Paris.


Museums in Savigny-le-Temple
Security is tight, but it's worth the effort. In the Hôtel de St-Aignan, dating from the 1600s, this museum of Jewish history has been handsomely and impressively installed. The development of Jewish culture is traced



Schirrhoffen, Bas-Rhin

Ruines de la Synagogue de Schirrhoffen - © M. Rothé

There is a discussion group devoted exclusively to this town 

Schirrhoffen Today;
The mayors of Schirrhoffen; Schirrhoffen cemetery status, photo of the synagogue and more



Das Gebäude der ehemaligen Synagoge - zu einem Wohnhaus umgebaut

The village of Schwenheim, had a Jewish community since the 17th century that counted thirty-three families, totaling 152 persons in the middle of the 19th century. The last Jew left Schwenheim in 1913. For a long time, only traces of the Jewish presence remained. It was only in 1998 that the mayor and a team of volunteers from the village restored the cemetery to it’s full glory.


St Quay Portrieux

Saint-Quay-Portrieux - Credit: Kamel15 (CC By SA)




Located at: rue de la Bergerie 67250 Soultz sous Forêts

About 30 minutes from Colmar. Musee du Bucheneck, rue du Kageneck is a fine arts and local crafts museum housed in an eleventh-century fortress that was the seat of the Episcopal bailiff from 1289 until the Revolution.  The Moise Ginsburger Room displays Torah scrolls, Torah mantles, a circumcision seat and ritual objects.



The synagogue was built in 1897 and was damaged in de 2nd world war ; it's no longer an active synagogue; it was renovated in recent years and part of the building (first floor) is used as an office by the "Cercle d’histoire et d’archéologie de l’Alsace du Nord".





This eastern French city is home to one of France's largest and oldest communities of Ashkenazi Jews - about 70% of the Jewish population.  Jews were first reported in 1170 by Benjamin of Tudela, who mentions that there was a flourishing community.  A cemetery was established at the beginning of the thirteenth century; the oldest remaining epitaph is from 1213.  The synagogue is not mentioned until 1292, according to an article in Hadassah Magazine authored by writer Ben G. Frank in May, 2003.

The Cercle de Genealogie Juive has made an agreement with the Strasbourg Jewish Community (Francis Levy, President)  to publish a major tool for Alsatian Jewish Genealogy -- the Rosenwiller Cemetery Project.  The Rosenwiller Cemetery, is one of the largest and oldest Alsatian Jewish graveyards.

Often called "the Jerusalem of France", most of the chief rabbis of France came from this Jewish community of 12,000, plus 3,000 in surrounding towns.

Another Jewish cemetery.  The area around the Place de la Republique once held a Jewish cemetery

Gate of the Jews
A plaque at the back corner of the Municipal Theater on rue de la Mesange, mentions that the Jews had to pay to enter the city during the day and sign out at night.


Musee Alsacien
Located at
21 quai Saint-Nicolas
Telephone: 333-88-52-50-01
A folk culture museum of popular regional art.  Two rooms are devoted to Alsatian Jewish worship.  Open daily from 10 to 6 except Tuesdays and certain holidays.

Passerelle des Juifs
(Footbridge of the Jews)

Rue des Juifs
(rue du Parchemin - at 20 rue des Charpentiers (corner of 19 rue des Juifs) is a thirteenth century mikve.

Strasbourg Tourist Office
333-88-52-28-20 Web site: 

Synagogue de la Paix and Community Center
Located at
1a rue du Grand-Rabbin-Rene Hirschler at Avenue de la Pix
Telephone 333-88-14-46-50
The site is available in both English and French

Orthodox synagogue
Located at 9 rue de Milieu in Wolfisheim - a suburb




TARRASCON, a town in S. France, south of Avignon. The earliest evidence of Jews in Tarrascon is a fragment of a Hebrew inscription dating from 1193, probably from a tombstone, encased in the St. Gabriel Tower. The oldest written document concerning the Jews of Tarrascon dates from 1283, but the community essentially gained in importance with the influx of Jews expelled from the kingdom of France. The Jews enjoyed complete commercial freedom and were authorized to possess real estate and hold the public office of toll gatherer, broker, or seller at auctions. A relatively large number of Jewish physicians lived there; at least four at the beginning of the 14th century, and at least six at the beginning of the 15th century. The Jews made up almost 10% of the total population, with about 100 families at the close of the 14th century and possibly more than 150 families in 1487. The present-day Rue des Juifs commemorates the old Jewish quarter – the carrière or Carrieyra dels Jusieus or Juzataria – which from 1378 became the compulsory quarter for the Jews. The community owned a synagogue, a slaughterhouse, and a cemetery


The city is located in the southwest of the country. Between 20,000 and 25,000 Jews live in the city and surrounding area. Jews probably came to this area of France when the Romans arrived in the 2nd century.  But for sure by the 8th century, there were Jews, since, for a Jew who was disloyal to the Franks, a regulation mandated a prominent community member be publicly face-slapped every year on Good Friday - as officially recorded in 883. When the Revolution began in 1789, at least 80 merchant Jews already lived in the city.  The war and Napoleon's dictates changed all. Jews received cemetery land and the offer of property for a synagogue.  But not until the late 19th and early 20th centuries did they begin significant reestablishment.

Espace du Judaisme (The Jewish Space)
2 Place Riquet
Phone 011 33 5 62 73 45 73. 
The main synagogue, Hekhal David is in the same building.

Jewish Community
Association Cultuelle Israelite de Toulouse
Phone 33 5 62 73 466 46

Phyllis Ellen Funke wrote an article about the city in the February 2008 issue of Hadassah Magazine. Hadassah France - Phone 33 1 53 42 67 18



Musee des Augustins
21 Rue de Metz; Phone 33 5 6122 21 82; Display No. 67 is an inscription, possibly pre-14th century, of worn Hebrew letters.


Resistance and Deportation Museum
52 Allees des Demoiselles
Phone: 33 5 61 1480 40;
gagullo@yahoo.fr  Web site for Lyon


Adath Israel - 17 Rue Alsace-Lorraine
Chaare Emeth - 35 Rue Rembrandt
Mishkan Nessim - 33 Rue Jules Dalou
Palaprat* - 2 Rue Palaprat
Synagogue Liberale - 13 Rue du Colonel Driant


* A must see is the Palaprat synagogue, located at the corner of Rue Palaprat and Rue d la Colombetter.  Dating from Napoleon's ear, it features a brick and cement exterior, but a decorative interior. The Menora replicates one presented to Napoleon by the building's architect.


TRETS (Heb. טְריץ), town in the department of Bouchesdu-Rhone, S. France. Jewish sources indicate that a Jewish community, which included some scholars, existed there at least from 1269. The non-Jewish sources mention the protection given by the lords of Trets to local Jews in the 14th and 15th centuries, granting them equality with Christian inhabitants. However, in 1413, the Jewish  community was obliged to request an order, which they obtained, placing them under the protection of the lord and imposing a heavy fine of 50 silver marks "for any injury or offense to them." The community continued to exist until the expulsion of the Jews from Provence in 1501



"Medieval Jewish Civilization: An Encyclopedia"
Edited by Norman Roth



Troyes is a beautifully preserved medieval town in the Champaign region of France. This is also the heart of the French wine industry. This trip introduces Rashi, considered the greatest commentator of all time, and his school of study.  Starting in the High Middle Ages, a significant Jewish community lived in Troyes and apparently enjoyed good relations with the Christian majority until the 12th century. The fact that there was a Jewish neighborhood, called the (Broce-aux-Juifs), located at the heart of the "tête du bouchon" (see the rue Saint-Frobert) does not mean it was a ghetto. It was more a grouping of trades, as often occurred at the time in cities.

Since 1960, this group of 16th and 17th century half-timbered houses has been the site of the Troyes Synagogue. The inscription at the door states, “I will enter here to praise God.

Extensive work was done in 1987 that laid bare the half timbers, typical of the Champagne area, which were incorporated into the synagogue, giving it its current attractive appearance.

Rabbi Chlomo ben Itshak (Rabbi Salomon, son of Isaac), known as Rachi (1040-1105), founded a famous Talmudic school in 1070 in Troyes where the sacred texts of Judaism were studied. His commentary is still authoritative today and has influenced European thought, in particular the Renaissance Christian exegesis and the Reform



Write to: Mairie de Valenciennes
              Service de l'Etat Civil
              Place des Armes
              59300 Valenciennes, France





There is a matzo factory at
Neymann House
46 rue du 23 Novembre.  

Wasselonne, with 4,923 inhabitants and county seat of the district, has industry, trade, and tourism. Since 1972, Wasselonne is twinned with the city of Dahn in the Palatinate due to relations existing in the Middle Ages between both cities. The Jewish community of Wasselonne, created after 1870, in 1890 rented a place that was done up in small prayer house (in an actual savings bank). The community expanding after WWI found this place cramped. A new small prayer house then was installed in a home near the Château (ancient Café Best) and dedicated in 1924. After WWII, the community meets in houses, except for the Feasts of Tishri, where they rented a room in the Star.





Located in Alsace



Located in Alsace, Wingersheim is a