Moses Marx Family Story

Teacher Moses Marx
Teacher Moses Marx © Alt-Gunzenhausen, Heft 39, Herausgeber: Verein für Heimatkunde Gunzenhausen

Moses Marx was born on 3. November 1859 in Maßbach. He was head teacher at the Israeli Elementary school in Gunzenhausen.

Teacher Marx married Emilie Klein who was born on 3. May 1862 in Oberstreu.
The Marx family lived at Hafnermarkt 18 in the Israeli Elementary school of Gunzenhausen.

The teaching staff
The teaching staff at the turn of the century. Back row from left to right: Grundlach, Luff, Pfeiffer, Brunner, Marx. Front row: Burger, Bierlein, Bach. Photo by: Photo studio Fettinger, Gunzenhausen

The four children of Moses and Emilie Marx:

Bella, born 23. November 1886 in Roth, was married to a man from Heilbronn. The couple emigrated to South Africa.
Frieda, born 2. January 1888 in Roth. She was a state certified needle work instructor. In 1908 she founded a needle work school for girls in Gunzenhausen. On 20. March 1911 she married Josef Wolfrom who was born 3. March 1838 in Cronheim. He was a bank “Prokurist”, attorney for the “Bayerische Vereinsbank” (United Bank of Bavaria) at Nuernberger Strasse 5.
Irma, born 9. July 1889 in Roth. She married the merchant Martin Bader from Fuerth on 22. November 1918. He was born 16. December 1888 in Friedberg. In 1938 – 1939 they lived at Schreyerstrasse 11 in Nuremberg.
Ludwig, born 28. December 1898 in Gunzenhausen. He was a merchant in Berlin and emigrated to South Africa. He had no children.


The undersigned will be opening a needle work school for girls in this town in January 1908.
She will be teaching the following techniques using the Schallenfeld method:
Knitting, crocheting, hand stitching (sewing), mending, darning, and embroidering. Also all types of white work and color embroidery/stitchery, machine sewing, and making bedding, and ladies’s and men’s (under)wear.
Because we have a limited number of openings at this time we will take applications only until 15. December at the Isreaeli school house.
Gunzenhausen November 1907
Signed: Frieda Marx
State certified Needlework instructor

Newspaper clipping
Newspaper clipping

1. September marks the 25th year of head teacher Marx’s employment at this Israeli elementary school. The Israeli religious congregation is honored to have hosted a celebration for this highly respected and beloved teacher. It took place last Wednesday at the Strauss Inn with a great number of participants. The director R. Seeberger gave a poignant speech, and  in the name of the community praised Mr. Marx as an always selfless, conscientious, and kind civil servant. He also gave Mr. Marx a gold watch as a sign of  appreciation for his loyalty and devotion. In the name of his former students Miss Resl Gutmann recited a meaningful poem for the honoree. Mr. Marx was touched and appreciative. May head teacher Marx continue to have a long and beneficial active life at this school.
Altmuehl-Bote 1919

Gravestone of Moses Marx
Gravestone of Moses Marx

Teacher Moses Marx died 14. June 1930 in Nuremberg, but was buried in Gunzenhausen. His wife Emilie had died before him on 17. November 1919 in Erlangen, but she was buried in the Jewish cemetery in Gunzenhausen too. Their impressive gravestones are still there.

Source: Personal documentation of the Jewish Citizens of Gunzenhausen, compiled by Werner Muehlhaeusser, city archivist of Gunzenhausen.

In the Booklet 39/1981 Wilhelm Lux wrote the following about Moses Marx:

Head teacher Moses Marx

Of all the teachers of the former Israeli elementary school the older people in Gunzenhausen must certainly remember the head teacher Moses Marx with fondness. He came from Maßbach, Landkreis Bad Kissingen, where he had been born on November 3, 1859. We were not able to learn anything about his education. One thing is certain though: He came to Gunzenhausen in the early 1890’s to succeed the previous head teacher David Frank, who had passed away. He moved into the newly built School house in the Mariusstrasse. His well earned reputation as an excellent educator had preceded him and been testified to by many who knew him.

In addition to teaching elementary school he also taught religion at the secondary school in Gunzenhausen. Since he was known to be an excellent Hebrew scholar he also taught the Hebrew language at the “Gymnasium Carolinum” in Ansbach. After his retirement in 1922 he moved to Ansbach to spend his last years there. He passed away on June 14, 1930. His remains were taken to Gunzenhausen and buried in the Isreali cemetery, where the only recently renovated grave stone still stands.

Aside from being head teacher Moses Marx was very interested in the history of the Jewish people and their prominent citizens. He founded the “Verein fuer Juedische Geschichte und Literatur”, the “Association for Jewish History and Literature”. He gave many important lectures on these subjects. However, the organization did not survive the times.

Mr. Marx was also very knowledgeable in German literature, especially the classics. He could recite/quote from them with ease. He was also very active as a singer in the “Chorverein Liederkranz 1934” ever since he arrived in town. It was only natural that he was asked to give the festival oration for the 100th anniversary celebration of Friedrich von Schiller's death in 1905.

His wife had died in 1919 and had been buried in the local cemetery where her tomb stone still stands. Together they had a son Ludwig, who emigrated to South Africa when he was still young. There he got a top management job in a mining company in the mining town of Johannisburg. They also had three daughters. Ludwig Marx visited his city of origin a few years ago. Of his three sisters Frieda Marx married Josef Wolfrom who was a bank attorney for the Bayerische Vereinsbank branch in Gunzenhausen, and emigrated to New York in 1938, where he later died.

Moses Marx enjoyed the company of his collegues, especially at their regular meetings in the Lehner’s restaurant. They held his retirement party there in 1922.
Max Levite succeeded head teacher Moses Marx and remained until 1938, the last Israeli teacher in the old town.