Heritage & Heritage Sites

At a ceremony in Washington D.C. in 2011, Kosovo and the U.S. State Department signed the Agreement on the Protection and Preservation of Certain Cultural Properties. The agreement was one of many originated by the U.S. Commission for the Preservation of America’s Heritage Abroad, and it set commitments and procedures for each side to protect cultural heritage sites, especially of religious and ethnic minorities.

 

PRISTINA

Site of Synagogue

The last synagogue in Kosovo was demolished in 1963. In May, 2013, a memorial plaque was dedicated on the site.

Jewish Cemeteries

“Old” Jewish Cemetery on Tauk Bahqe hill near Velania, dating from the 19th century, with about 50 or so marked graves.

Students of Dartmouth  University and the American University in Pristina worked to clean up and restore the old Jewish cemetery in the summer of 2011.  (The cemetery was listed as a protected monument in 1967 but was in abandoned condition.) They built a new entrance, repaired gravestones, and restored them to original positions. A few months later, neo-Nazis vandalized the site, but municipal authorities repaired the damage.

“New” Jewish Cemetery on Dragodan, next to Serbian Orthodox cemetery has been reported to be in seriously neglected condition by Ivan Ceresnjes, of the Center for Jewish Art, who has carried out extensive documentation of Jewish sites in ex-Yugoslavia.

New Jewish cemetery Pristina, January 2012. Photo: Ivan Ceresnjes

New Jewish cemetery Pristina, January 2012. Photo: Ivan Ceresnjes

Pristina "New" Jewish cemetery. Photo : Ivan Ceresnjes, 2012

Pristina “New” Jewish cemetery. Photo : Ivan Ceresnjes, January 2012

 

IAJGS International Jewish Cemetery Project page on Pristina 

Read “Baby Steps to Restoring Memory of Kosovo Jews” — 2013 article by Liam Hoare in The Forward

See photos and a discussion of the “New” cemetery, including a report by Ceresnjes, by Samuel D. Gruber