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Estonian Jewish Museum

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Estonian Jewish Museum

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Basic Information

Location Karu str. 16, Tallinn
Phone number (372) 6623034
Country Estonia
City Talin

General Information

Open to visitors yes
Need appointment no
Handicap accessibility no
Website http://www.eja.pri.ee/
Geographical Coordinates 59.43869,24.76665


Summary

The history of the Jews in Estonia starts with individual reports of Jews in what is now Estonia from as early as the 14th century. However, the process of permanent Jewish settlement in Estonia began in the 19th century, especially after they were granted the official right to enter the region by a statute of Russian Tsar Alexander II in 1865. This allowed the so-called Jewish ‘Nicholas soldiers’ (often former cantonists) and their descendants, First Guild merchants, artisans, and Jews with higher education to settle in Estonia and other parts of the Russian Empire outside their Pale of Settlement. The "Nicholas soldiers" and their descendants, and artisans were, basically, the ones who founded the first Jewish congregations in Estonia. The Tallinn congregation, the largest in Estonia, was founded in 1830. The Tartu congregation was established in 1866 when the first fifty families settled there. Synagogues were built, the largest of which were constructed in Tallinn in 1883 and Tartu in 1901. Both of these were subsequently destroyed by fire in World War II.


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