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(Czech Kadaň; Ger. Kaaden) in N.W. Bohemia. Jews are first mentioned in Kadan in 1339 and 1341. From 1465 to 1517, seven Jews were formally granted citizenship. The town and castle often were pledged to royal creditors, but, after the town bought its freedom from the local lord, the Jews were expelled in 1520. Frederick II granted permission to reside so one Jewish family settled in Kadan in 1624. Other Jews followed, mainly from Udlice, despite townsmen's protests. This new community was expelled in 1650 after the execution of a visiting Jew on charges of killing a Christian child whose body  was preserved in a special altar in the church until it burned down in 1810. Ten Jewish families lived in the town in 1724 and nine in 1798. Jewish population: 118 in the district in 1869, 219 in 1881, 409 in 1910, and 116 (1.5% of the total population) in 1930. The congregation, founded in 1874, was approved in 1884 and legally became a community in 1893. The synagogue was set ablaze on November 10, 1938. Most of the remaining Jews were sent to the death camps. [February 2009]


J. Hoffmann, in: H. Gold (ed.), Juden und Judengemeinden Boehmens. (1934), 223–45; Germ Jud, 2 (1968), 384.


KADAN: (I) US Commission No. CZCE000241

Alternate names (German): Kaaden. Town is in Bohemia-Chomutov at 50º23' 13º16', 14 km SW of Chomutov and 32 km ENE of Karlovy Vary. Old cemetery is 0.7 km NE of town in Hrbitovni Street. Present population is 5000-25,000 with no Jews.

  • Town: Mestsky Urad, 432 01 Kadan.
  • Regional: Jewish Congregation: ZNO Praha (Ms. Jana Wolfova), Maislova 18, 110 01 Praha 1; tel. 02/2318664 and Okresni urad-Referat Kultury, 430 00 Chomutov.
  • Interested: 1. Okresni Muzeum (Dr. Samsulova), Palackeho 86, 430 01 Chomutov; tel. 0396/5993; 2. Statni Zidovske Muzeum, Jachymova 3, 110 01 Praha 1; tel. 02/2310634; and 3. Ladislav Cermak (local historian), Dvorakova 763, 432 01 Kadan; tel. 0398/2063. Vojtech Brett, Kostnicka 4077, 430 03 Chomutov.

Earliest known Jewish community was the 16th century. 1930 Jewish population was 116. A medieval Jewish community was banished in 1520 and new community banished in 1650. Modern congregation was founded in 1874. Nazis expelled Jews in 1938. Jewish cemetery originated in 1884 with last known Conservative or Reform/Progressive Jewish burial about 1925. Zdar (Ger: Saar), 12 km away, used this unlandmarked cemetery. The suburban hillside, separate but near other cemeteries, has no sign. Reached by turning directly off a public road, access is open with permission via a continuous masonry wall and fence and locking gate.

1-20 tombstones, not in original locations and none toppled or broken, are unusually shaped or common gravestones. Nazis used stones as building material; several bases of assembled tombstones lie near the cemetery plot. The cemetery contains no known mass graves or structures. The cemetery property is used for small allotment gardens. Adjacent properties are recreational, road, and an overgrown pool. Compared to 1939, the cemetery boundaries enclose the same area. Foreign Jewish visitors visit the cemetery rarely. Vandalism occurred prior to World War II (demolished by Nazis in 1938) and since. No maintenance or care of gardens. Very serious threats are vandalism, security, weather erosion, and vegetation overgrowth to the few remaining stones depending on subjective point of view.
Ladislav Mertl, Mgr. of Geography, Kubanske namesti 1322/17, Praha 10-Vrsovice; tel. 02/743213 and Jiri Fiedler, z"l, Brdickova 1916, 155 00 Praha 5; tel. 02/553340 completed survey on 17 May 1992. Documentation: 1. Vaclav Mattauch: Historicky pruvodce Kadani (1957); 2. Hugo Gold: Die Juden and Judengemeinden Bohemens (1934); 3. F. Stocklow: Der Bezirk Kaaden (1890); 4. 1982 letters of L. Cermak; and 5. 1930 and 1991 Censuses. Other documentation exists but was inaccessible, probably in archives of Jewish congregation in Usti nad Labem. Mertl who interviewed Vojtech Brett in Chomutov visited site on 17 May 1992.
KADAN II:     US Commission No. CZCE000242

New cemetery is 0.7 km NE of town in Hrbitovni St. (same location as for old cemetery) The unlandmarked Jewish cemetery originated in 1926 with last known Jewish burial in the late 1930s. The cemetery is obliterated, its land used for building of the 1985 municipal hall for funeral ceremonies and park plots surrounding it. No trace commemorates the original Jewish cemetery here. The suburban hillside, part of a municipal cemetery. Reached by crossing the municipal cemetery. Access is open with permission to the continuous masonry wall and locking gate surrounding the site. [Note: contradicts "it does not exist"]

The last stone was removed after 1985. The cemetery contains no known mass graves. The municipality owns the property. Adjacent properties are agricultural, municipal roads, and parking. Rarely, private visitors usually from America stop. The caretaker is paid by a local contribution. For survey information, see Kadan I.

Last Updated on Friday, 13 February 2009 23:09
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