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Burning synagogue in Rostock the morning after Kristallnacht

Residents of the mid-size city of Rostock watch the burning Augustenstrasse synagogue the morning after Kristallnacht, November 1938. Friedrich Best, a non-Jewish teenager who lived near the synagogue, took the photograph. As he ate his breakfast, he saw from the kitchen window that a crowd was gathering. Suddenly, flames leaped from the roof of the synagogue. Best ran and got his camera. He snapped two photographs, which he later developed and showed to his parents. Fearing that he would be arrested if the police found out that he had recorded the event, his parents insisted that he destroy both prints and negatives. Best secretly saved the negatives and sold them to the city archive in 1958 after a call for Nazi-era artifacts was published in the Rostock newspaper.

Archive der Hansestadt Rostock

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