Great Choral Synagogue Memorial

Great Choral Synagogue Memorial
Photo from the Latvian National Library collection “Zudusi Latvija" (Lost Latvia)

Testimony to the horrors committed during WWII is the Great Choral Synagogue in Riga. However, do not be surprised if you do not see it, as it does not exist anymore. The synagogue, with everyone in it at the time, was burned to the ground on July 4, 1941, when Riga was occupied by the German army.

Up until WWII, it was the largest synagogue in Riga. After the war, the synagogue’s ruins were razed completely and a square was constructed at the site of the tragedy. On July 4, 1988, a memorial was erected on this spot – a large stone with the Star of David on it, but in 1993 a memorial was also unveiled (architect Sergey Ryzh). In 2007, next to the memorial, another memorial honoring Žanis Lipke and others in Latvia who rescued Jews during the war was erected. The memorial has the names of 270 persons who attempted to rescue Jews in Latvia during WWII, and it was designed by Latvian Academy of Art student Elīna Lazdiņa.

Source: memorialplaces.lu.lv