Kartell-Convent

This page is under CONSTRUCTION …

Among my father’s papers is a Kartell-Convent book from the 1930s, which I will upload some information about in due course.

The letters KC, on the cover of the book, refer to the Kartell-Convent – a fraternity of German students of the Jewish faith. According to Wikipedia, it was in existence from around the 1880s/1890s to 1933, and was essentially an association of Jewish fraternities. In 1913 it had around 930 members in ten sections; by 1925 there were 26 sections. The National Socialist government banned Jewish groups in 1933.


The Leo Baeck Institute online has the following notes on the history of the K.C.: https://archives.cjh.org//repositories/5/resources/7288

The information is extracted here as a PDF in case the link becomes invalid over time: Leo Baeck Institute – Notes on the K.C.

Returning to some brief notes from Wikipedia, the K.C. was founded on 23 October 1886 at the Silesian Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität (the University of Breslau). During the reign of the Habsburg monarchy, Jews finally gained some measure of equality in 1867, which continued during the rule of the German Empire (from 1871).

However, in practice this notional equality was never fully realised: for civil service recruitment, for example, a Christian religious oath had to be sworn. Furthermore, the state was the key employer for academics, yet Jews could not be officers, diplomats, civil servants, teachers, or professors. Thus, they mainly aimed to study for the professions in the fields of law and medicine.

Wikipedia goes on to note that Jews took up their right to attend university, and that the K.C. contributed significantly to the assimilation of Jews in academia. While the proportion of Jews in Prussia in 1886 was only about one percent of the total population, the proportion of Jewish students at the universities was around nine percent. In 1871, the proportion of Jews among Prussian lawyers stood at 3 percent; by 1880 it was 7.3 percent; by 1893, the proportion had increased to 25.4 percent. The development of practices for private doctors took a similar route. 

However, on 30 June 1933, all such Jewish connections and societies in the German Reich were declared dissolved and their property confiscated.


Some further resources online

https://collections.ushmm.org/search/catalog/irn50283

https://wiener.soutron.net/Portal/Default/en-GB/recordview/index/109370