Blick nach Osten in der Synagoge mit der GedenktafelThe WWI-Memorial in the Synagogue

In the synagogue there is a memory plaque for the victims of World War I from the Jewish community in Steinsfurt.

This memorial was donated by Else Vogt from Philadelphia and by Samuel Weil.

Probably it was painted before 1928 because the date of Ludwig Freudenthaler's death is written by another hand.


The Hebrew inscription on the memorial is taken from Psalm 118. It means „I shall not die, but live (and declare the works of the LORD)”


The Memorial

Bild der Gedenktafel in der Synagoge 

Julius Weil

Julius Weil (1888 - 1915)

Julius Weil on the roll of honor Julius Weil was born on January 15th, 1888 as the fourth of seven children of the trader Moritz Weil (1849 - 1923) and his wife Regina née Levy (1853 - 1928)


Julius Weil in 1910 as a member of the Phoenix qymnasists' squadJulius was a member in the Steinsfurt sport club „Phoenix”. The picture shows him as a member of the gymnasts' squad (in front Wilhelm Frank II).

By occupation he was a trader.

He was killed on May 15th, (14th) 1915 at Angres .

He is remembered on the roll of honor in Steinsfurt and on the WWI-Memorial in the synagogue. His sister Elsa (*1886) was one of the sponsors for the memorial.


His parents are buried on the Waibstadt cemetery.Das Grab der Eltern auf dem Waibstadter Friedhof



The left-hand picture is from the Steinsfurt roll of honor.

The picture of the Phönix' gymnasts is from the collection of our member, the late Helmut Frank.

Fritz Weil

Friedrich Weil (1895 - 1916)

Friedrich WeilFriedrich („Fritz”) Weil was born on June 18, 1895 in Steinsfurt as the fifth of eight children to the trader and publican Samuel Weil (1859 - 1933) . His mother Berta née Weil (1863 - 1923) was a sister of Hermann Weil (1868 - 1927).

Friedrich attended the Realschule Sinsheim. When he left school in July 1910 with the diploma at the age of only 15, he wanted to be a „merchant”. For this he later went to Antwerp in Belgium.

Fritz was in the (Baden) Infantry-Regiment No 169. He was killed on July 1, 1916 at Bapaume in the Artois (First day of the Battle of the Somme).

He is honored on the WWI-Memorial in the synagogue and on the „Ehrentafel” in Steinsfurt.


His parents have a common grave in the Waibstadt cemetery. The gravestone shows a shofar on his father's side.

Photo of Friedrich by courtesy of Carlos Weil

Julius Weil

Ludwig Freudenthaler

Ludwig Freudenthaler (1889 - 1928)

Memorial plaque in the SynagogueLudwig Freudenthaler in his uniform

Ludwig Friedrich Freudenthaler is one of the four Jewish men from Steinsfurt, that are honoured as victims on the WWI-Memorial in the synagogue.

He was born on January 9, 1889 in Richen as son of Aron Freudenthaler (1848 - 1912), a butcher and trader, and his wife Sophie née Bär (1851 - 1937). The couple had four children: Adelheid (*1879, Julius (*1881), Wilhelm (*1883) and Ludwig. Adelheid died within the year of her birth. Wilhelm was killed in action in March 1918 and is remembered on the memorial in the Jewish cemetery in Eppingen.

On January 6th, 1920 Ludwig Freudenthaler married Hedwig Ottenheimer (1893 - 1945) in Heidelberg . She was from Heinsheim and daughter of the trader Moses Ottenheimer (1861 - 1942) and his wife Hannchen née Kaufmann (1867 - 1932). Ludwig and Hedwig Freudenthaler had two daugters, Anna (*1925 in Heidelberg, ✡ 2010 in Paris) and Hilde (*1926 in Steinsfurt, ✡ 2015 in Baltimore).

In Steinsfurt he was accountant in the firm Eichterheimer, that dealt with building materials. In 1927 he started his own firm dealing with metals, timber and building materials .


Gravestone of Ludwig Freudenthaler on the Eppingen cemeteryOn the WWI-Memorial in the synagogue is to be read that Ludwig had been wounded on May 6, 1915. He died on June 20, 1928 during a visit in his brother's Julius house in Richen and is buried in the Jewish cemetery of Eppingen .
The Hebrew on his grave stone gives his name as Levi.

Obituary for Ludwig Freudenthaler in the Eppinger ZeitungIn the local newspaper 'Eppinger Zeitung' an obituary was published on June 21, 1928

After her husband's death the widow Hedwig Freudenthaler moved back to Heinsheim where her parents lived. In October 1940 she was deported to Gurs and in 1942 to Auschwitz where she was murdered. We remember her on our Shoah page.



Material from the

Stadtarchive Sinsheim, „Steinsfurt”, \1

Entries of civil registers for Eppingen, Heidelberg, Heinsheim and Sinsheim (now in the corresponding town archives)

We got the photo of Ludwig by his grandchildren.

The photo of the grave is by M. Heitz.

The Stadtarchive Eppingen kindly provided the clipping with the obituary.

Else Vogt

Elsa Vogt, née Weil (1886 - 1972)

WWI-memorial in the synagogueThe WWI-Memorial in the synagogue names „Elsa Vogt, Philadelphia” as one of the sponsors of the plaque.

Elsa Vogt was born in Steinsfurt on July 30, 1886 as daughter of the trader Moritz Weil (1849 - 1923) and his wife Regina née Levy (1853 - 1928). The couple had married in 1883  and had seven children: Gerdraut (*1884), Karoline (*1885), ElsaJulius (1888 - 1915) who is remembered on the WWI-plaque, Jenny (*1889), Selma (*1893), and a still-born son in 1897 .

Emma Vogt with her granddaughter, 1952Elsa married Charles H Vogt in New York in 1916. Charles was born in Philadelphia in June 1886 as the son of the German born immigrant couple Friedrich G. Vogt  and his wife Sophia. Frederick, as he was called in the US, began to work as a butcher in Philadelphia, but soon expanded his business and the firm F.G. Vogts & Sons grew to be one of the largest in the US. In 1947 it was bought by the Oscar Mayer Company, that today belongs to the Kraft Food Group.

Charles, too, worked for the family firm in a leading position. Several patents for inventions connected with meat processing and sausage production were filed under his name.

The couple Charles and Elsa Vogt had two sons, Richard (1917 - 2007) and Edward (1918 - 1991). Charles died in Philadelpha in Jan 1963. Elsa died in Montgomery, MD in Dec 1972.

Elsa's parents are buried in the Waibstadt cemetery.Gravestone of Moritz and Regine Weil on the Waibstadt cemetery



Civil registers

Death certificates and Social Security Death Index


Historical Notes of the Oscar Mayer Company

Samuel Weil

Samuel Weil (1859 - 1933) is noted on the WWI memory plaque in the synagogue as one of the sponsors.

Samuel Weil (1859 – 1933)

Samuel Weil was born on May 9, 1859 in Steinsfurt as the son of the innkeeper Veis Weil (1821 - 1891) and his wife Elise née Weil (1822 - 1899).

On May 15, 1887 he married Berta Weil (1863 - 1928), a sister of Hermann Weil . The couple had 8 children: Getta (*1889), Flora Julie (*1890), Paula (*1892), Lily (*1893), Friedrich (*1895), Johanna (*1897), Alice (*1902) and Josef Sigmund (*1904) .

After his father's death in 1891 Samuel Weil took over his inn. He was supported in this by the Steinsfurt council because it was the only inn for Israelites in the village serving spirits.


In his later life he suffered from heavy diabetes. In his right foot a gangrene developped, so it was amputated. But then his left foot showed the disease, too. He died on January 3, 1933 Link ◊ and is buried at the side of his wife in the Waibstadt cemetery. The gravestone shows a shofar on his side as a sign for his function in the community.

Samuel Weil's name is on the WWI memory plaque in the synagogue. He was one of the sponsors because his son Friedrich was killed in action.



The picture of Samuel Weil with his grandchildren is from H.Appenzeller's collection.

GLA 377-4330, 490-15067

Civil registers Steinsfurt