The story goes that a Rabbi Pinkas founded this synagogue in 1479 after falling out with the elders at the Old-New Synagogue. The building was enlarged in 1535, and a Renaissance façade was added in 1625. In the 1950s, the names of more than 80,000 men, women and children of Bohemia and Moravia who died in the Holocaust were inscribed on the synagogue's walls as a memorial.
In 1967, after the Six Day War, the Czechoslovak government expelled the Israeli ambassador and closed the synagogue for 'restoration'. In the ensuing 22 years, the writing became indecipherable. Not until after 1989 could the museum begin carefully restoring the names, a job that was completed in 1994. The Pinkas also houses a particularly powerful exhibition of drawings by children interned in Terezín, the last stop en route to the death camps in the east.
This museum is part of the Židovské Muzeum (Jewish Museum).