Volos New Jewish Cemetery

Cemetery Information

Country
Greece
Region
Thessaly
District
Magnesia
Settlement
Volos
Site address
The cemetery is located on the corner of Leoforos Kazanaki Stret and Paraskevopoulou Street, adjacent to the municipal cemetery.
GPS coordinates
39.37747, 22.94071
Perimeter length
342 metres
Is the cemetery demolished
no
Type and height of existing fence
The cemetery is surrounded by a masonry fence of up to 1.8 metres height, with an upper part made of mesh.
Preservation condition
Fenced and protected Jewish cemetery
General site condition
The operational cemetery is fenced and protected. It is cared for by the Jewish community and is in good condition.
Number of existing gravestones
698. The gravestones are marked with numbered stone plates. Around 40 tombstones, dating back from 1866 to 1918, were brought from Volos Old Jewish cemetery.
Date of oldest tombstone
1866 (oldest tombstone found by ESJF expedition)
Date of newest tombstone
2019
Urgency of erecting a fence
Fence is not needed
Land ownership
Property of local community
Preserved construction on site
A gatehouse and a memorial to Holocaust victims are situated on the cemetery site.
Drone surveys
Yes

Historical overview

A small Romaniot community existed in Volos from the 14th century. In the early 19th century, 35 Jewish families from the Peloponnesus settled there and established a community. The Alliance Israelite Universelle opened a Jewish school in 1864 and a new synagogue was built in 1865. The Jewish population in 1869 was 190. The community became renowned for its hospitality to the many who passed through Volos’s port. A new Alliance school was opened in 1888 and operated until 1926. In 1892, R. Moshe Pesach was appointed community rabbi and held the position until his death in 1955. The Jewish population in 1896 stood at about 500 (of a total population of 16,788). In 1908, a Zionist organization was established and a few others followed in the 1920s. By 1939, there were 14 charity associations alongside a number of cultural and youth organisations. In 1930, the Jewish population reached a peak of around 2,000. The Jewish population in 1940 was 882. In April 1941, the Italian army entered Volos. On 24th-25th March 1944, the remaining Jews in Volos were sent to Larissa and from there to the death camps. After the war, the community numbered about 700 Jews, some of whom were refugees from other communities. The community was reestablished and grew to be one of the largest in Greece after Athens and Salonika.

The exact period of the cemetery’s establishment is unknown, but it can be assumed it merged in the 19th century.

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