Jewish Sarajevo: Streets and Palaces without which the City would be unrecognizable


What most citizens of Sarajevo probably do not know is that today’s Cemalusa Street used to be called Jewish Street due to the fact that its present form was built by Jewish people.

There lived several wealthy Jewish families, including the family Albahari from Tesanj, after whose member and partisan, Salom Albahari, Cemalusa was named.

Besides houses, a Jewish school and the object of Jewish cooperative still stand in Cemalusa. Not far from this street, next to today’s BKC is placed the Institute for the development of CS, which used to be a seat of the Jewish municipality.

Tourists will have the opportunity to hear the story of Mojca Salom and his palace that stands in Titova Street today. Salome’s palace still has engraved initials MS at its entrance and more or less preserved the original appearance from 1912. What is interesting about this beautiful facility is that it was the first residential building that was built exclusively for rent.

A little further from Salome palace is Eternal Flame, a monument to fallen soldiers of NOB. What is less known is that the palace beneath which lies the flame of freedom was actually the first hotel in Sarajevo, which was built by a Hungarian Jew.

The area of the main street from Bascarsija to Skenderija used to be full of shops owned by Jews. A total of 630 of them was registered in old documents that are dating from 1941.

Jewish people are living in Sarajevo for nearly 500 years, and they brought the Spanish and Portuguese language, song, cuisine and religion. Part of it has become an inseparable part of the culture of Sarajevo, like the song “When I went to Bentbasa” which is a true example of Sephardic synagogue song.

(Source: Irvin P./Klix.ba)

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