Edinburgh Jewish History
Jewish presence in enlightened Edinburgh can be traced back to 1691, the year in which the minutes of Edinburgh Town Council recorded the application of David Brown, a professing Jew, to reside and trade in the city. The first Jew to buy a burial plot in Edinburgh was Herman Lyon. He came to Edinburgh from Germany in 1788 and described himself as a dentist and “corn operator” ie podiatrist and wrote a remarkable book on the subject. In 1795 he petitioned Edinburgh Town Council to purchase a plot of land on Calton Hill for a burying place for himself and his family. There is no trace of the plot today, but it is marked on the Ordnance Survey map of 1852 as “Jew’s Burial Vault”.
The Scottish Jewish Archives Centre, located in Glasgow, holds a collection of material about Edinburgh Jewry – see their website www.sjac.org.uk or email email@example.com