Veroia Jewish Cemetery

Cemetery Information

Country
Greece
Region
Central Macedonia
District
Imathia
Settlement
Veroia
Site address
The cemetery was located between the Akropoleos Street and Kimonos Street. Today there is a stadium on the site.
GPS coordinates
40.52489, 22.19645
Perimeter length
453 metres
Is the cemetery demolished
yes
Type and height of existing fence
No fence
Preservation condition
Demolished and overbuilt Jewish cemetery
General site condition
On the territory of the former cemetery there is now a stadium, a car park as well as several residential buildings. In 1989, the municipality laid out dozens of the preserved gravestones behind the eastern stand of the stadium.
Number of existing gravestones
91. The remaining tombstones have been laid on the ground behind the eastern stand of the stadium.
Date of oldest tombstone
1725
Date of newest tombstone
1930
Urgency of erecting a fence
Fence is not needed
Land ownership
Municipality
Preserved construction on site
There is a small stone building including a memorial plate to the cemetery over its door, constructed by municipality on the stadium territory. Its purpose is unknown.
Drone surveys
Yes

Historical overview

Jews from Veroia are mentioned in the New Testament, dating their presence to 49-50 C.E. In 1453, the Ottoman conquerors expelled the Jewish community to Istanbul but in the first half of the 15th century, Spanish immigrants joined the small Romaniot community left there. In 1597, the Jews numbered 737 and formed a cohesive, predominantly Sephardi (Spanish and Portuguese) community that was highly influenced by the Salonika community. In the 17th century., a number of Jews converted to Islam with the emergence of the Shabbatean movement. In the 18th century, the synagogue was built (or extended) in the style of Salonika’s Sephardi synagogues. The Jewish population in 1880 was 149. In 1900, the Jews numbered some 500-600. In the following years public organisations for the welfare of the community were established and with assistance from the Alliance Israelite, a Jewish school was opened. Jews escaping epidemics in Salonika settled in Veroia. In 1920s, Zionist activity was minimal and disorganised in Veroia. In the leadup to WWII, the community numbered 850. On 31st March 1943, 680 Jews were arrested and sent to Auschwitz via Salonika. Around 130 survived the Holocaust but by the 1990s only 2 families remained in Veroia.

The exact period of the cemetery’s establishment is unknown, but it can be assumed that it emerged in the 15th century.

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