Louis Grünbaum (1820 Berlin – 1880 Berlin) (Feld A1)
Louis Grünbaum was born in Berlin on February 6, 1820, the son of master tailor Abraham Grünbaum. His brother Hermann, who was five years older, remained associated with his father’s trade as a manufacturer of silk goods, whereas Louis learned the trade of a brass and bronze founder. These craftsmen cast brass/bronze and other copper alloys into chandeliers, buckles and buttons, fixtures and fittings, amongst other things. Louis Grünbaum later worked as a house inspector and caretaker at the Jewish community’s retirement home at Grosse Hamburger Strasse 26, where he also lived. He died on September 19, 1880.
On September 9, 1880, the Jewish cemetery in Weissensee had been inaugurated, and the first burial in the cemetery was that of Louis Grünbaum on September 22, 1880. His gravestone, a traditional stele, is thus the oldest in the cemetery and bears the number 1 on its side.
Already heavily damaged by weathering, irrevocable destruction of the sandstone gravestone is inevitable without restoration measures. Since it is the first and oldest gravestone in the cemetery, we want very much to preserve it. To this end, we have carried out extensive cleaning and conservation measures.
Laura Perls (1862 Rybnik – 1919 Berlin) (Feld O5)
Around 1919, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe designed the memorial for Laura Perls (1862–1919), née Haase, a tomb that captivates with its unadorned, simple clarity. Laura Perls was the mother of the well-known international art dealer, collector, and writer Hugo Perls, who had early recognised the young architect Mies van der Rohe’s potential.
In collaboration with the Berlin Monument Authority and the Historic Churchyards and Cemeteries Berlin-Brandenburg Foundation, the Friends of the Jewish Cemetery Berlin-Weissensee has participated in the restoration of the Laura Perls memorial that was initiated in 2015. In the restoration of the Perls gravesite, the main goal was to repair the damage to the structure that had gradually developed over the decades and to recover the specific spatial and design qualities of the site, which are characterised by the interaction of the natural stone elements with the elegant inscription and the sculpted forms of the hedges. In April 2016, the restoration work was completed.
Oscar Wassermann (1869 Bamberg – 1934 ) (Feld W.T.)
To the side of the hall of mourning is the Wassermann gravesite. Buried here are Margit Wassermann, née Fürst (1882–1924) and Oscar Wassermann. The banker Oscar Wassermann was a member of the Board of the Deutsche Bank from 1912 to 1933, and served as its spokesman from 1923 to 1933.
In December 2012, the Friends of the Jewish Cemetery Berlin-Weissensee received a donation from the Deutsche Bank specifically for the restoration of the Oscar Wassermann gravesite. The monument conservation measures were carried in 2013 and included the professional cleaning of the natural stone features of the entire gravesite as well as the relaying of the sunken paving slab and the partially displaced borders. In addition, the planting was renewed. The horticultural care of the grave is now assured, as the Deutsche Bank has taken over the perpetual care of the Oscar Wassermann gravesite at the recommendation of the Friends of the Jewish Cemetery Berlin-Weissensee.