The first memorial service for the victims of the Klooga massacre was held on 7 October 1944. The remains of the victims were buried in two mass graves in the vicinity of the pyres. The gravesite was surrounded by a stone wall and a tombstone with the epitaph “To the Everlasting Memory of the Victims of Fascism” was erected in 1951. The tombstone was fitted with commemorating plaques execrating the perpetrators, who were called ‘fascist murderers’ and ‘enemies of the Soviet people’, while the victims were referred to as ‘Soviet citizens’.

The Klooga monument was one of the first in Soviet Estonia commemorating the victims of fascism. Official memorial meetings were held at the site several times a year. The Holocaust was mentioned neither there nor elsewhere in the Soviet Union. The survivors and relatives of those who had perished in the Klooga camp were neither invited nor welcome to participate in those meetings. A group of former Klooga prisoners from Israel visited the site for the first time in May of 1989. Talk began of the need for a monument to the victims of the Holocaust, since the one erected in 1951 carried a message of Soviet ideology instead of commemorating the Holocaust victims. In 1994, shortly after the restoration of Estonia’s independence, the plaques on the monument were replaced at the request of the Jewish community in Estonia to restore the truth about the nationality of the victims. The Soviet red star at the top of the monument was removed in 1994 and replaced by the Star of David in 2013.  

On the eve of the 50th anniversary of the Klooga mass murder, a monument to all Jews murdered in Estonia in 1941–1944 was erected about a hundred meters from the existing tombstone. This was the first memorial in Estonia to commemorate the victims of the Holocaust. A third monument was erected in Klooga in 2005 to commemorate all Jews who were killed or died in the Klooga concentration camp. The memorial is located approximately a couple of hundred of meters to the south of the prior monument to the victims of the Holocaust.

Soviet postcard with the image of the tombstone of the victims of a mass murder. Harju County Museum
Memorial to all Jews murdered in Estonia in 1941–1944. Photo: Olev Liivik
Memorial stone to the Jews who were killed or died in the Klooga concentration camp. Photo: Olev Liivik