Marcel Goldschmidt’s Children: The Two Who Survived

Marcel (born Mayer) Goldschmidt, the fourth child of Jacob Meier Goldschmidt and Jettchen Cahn, died in 1928 and was survived by his wife and first cousin, Hedwig Goldschmidt, and their four children, Jacob, Nelly, Else, and Grete. Hedwig and two of those children, Jacob and Grete, would survive the Holocaust. Nelly and Else were not as fortunate. This post will tell the story of Hedwig and the two children who escaped.

Grete and her husband Berthold Heimerdinger and their daughter Gabrielle were the first to leave Germany. They arrived in New York on June 22, 1934, and were going to Berthold’s brother Leonard Heimerdinger in New York City.

Berthold Heimerdinger and family, ship manifest, Year: 1934; Arrival: New York, New York, USA; Microfilm Serial: T715, 1897-1957; Line: 1; Page Number: 101, Ancestry.com. New York, Passenger and Crew Lists (including Castle Garden and Ellis Island), 1820-1957

Two months later Berthold declared his intention to become a US citizen.  He was working as a securities dealer at that time, and the family was residing at 1212 Fifth Avenue in New York City.

Berthold Heimerdinger, Declaration of Intent, The National Archives at Philadelphia; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; NAI Title: Declarations of Intention for Citizenship, 1/19/1842 – 10/29/1959; NAI Number: 4713410; Record Group Title: Records of District Courts of the United States, 1685-2009; Record Group Number: 21, (Roll 478) Declarations of Intention for Citizenship, 1842-1959 (No 355901-357000), Ancestry.com. New York, State and Federal Naturalization Records, 1794-1943

Grete’s mother Hedwig came to visit them in New York in April, 1935, for a four month stay, listing her son Jacob as the person to contact back in Frankfurt,1 but Hedwig returned to Germany after her visit. She returned for another visit two years later on October 29, 1937, but this time listed her residence as Zurich, Switzerland, where her contact person was a friend named Julius Wolf.2

Sometime thereafter Hedwig must have left Switzerland because when she arrived in England on March 18, 1938, she listed her last address as Amsterdam.3 I don’t know where she was during World War II. More on that in a later post. By 1952, she was living in the United States.

Ancestry.com. New York, Index to Petitions for Naturalization filed in New York City, 1792-1989 [

In 1940, Grete, Berthold, and Gabrielle Heimerdinger were living in Queens, New York, and Berthold was working as a jewelry dealer.4 According to Berthold’s draft registration for World War II, he was self-employed.

Berthold Heimerdinger, World War II draft registration, The National Archives at St. Louis; St. Louis, Missouri; Record Group Title: Records of the Selective Service System; Record Group Number: 147, Ancestry.com. U.S., World War II Draft Registration Cards, 1942

Grete’s brother Jacob arrived in New York on August 30, 1941, from Lisbon, Portugal, with his last residence being Nice, France. On his declaration of intention to become a US citizen, Jacob listed his occupation as an art dealer, like so many of his extended family members from Frankfurt.

Jacob Goldschmidt, Declaration of Intent, The National Archives at Philadelphia; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; NAI Title: Declarations of Intention for Citizenship, 1/19/1842 – 10/29/1959; NAI Number: 4713410; Record Group Title: Records of District Courts of the United States, 1685-2009; Record Group Number: 21 Description Description: (Roll 644) Declarations of Intention for Citizenship, 1842-1959 (No 512901-513900) Source Information Ancestry.com. New York, State and Federal Naturalization Records, 1794-1943

According to his World War II draft registration completed the following year, Jacob was living at 26 East 63rd Street in New York and listed Herman Goldschmidt as the person who would always know where he was. Herman was his cousin, the son of Julius Falk Goldschmidt and Helene Goldschmidt II, and was living at the same address, 26 East 63rd Street.

Thus, Jacob was living with his cousins, not his sister Grete. Jacob did not list an occupation on his draft registration, but listed his place of business as the same address as his (and his cousins’) residence, 26 East 63rd Street. (Note also that on the naturalization index card for his mother Hedwig above, she also listed 26 East 63rd Street as her address in 1952.)

Jacob Goldschmidt, World War II draft registration, The National Archives at St. Louis; St. Louis, Missouri; Record Group Title: Records of the Selective Service System; Record Group Number: 147, Ancestry.com. U.S., World War II Draft Registration Cards, 1942

Jacob had reported on his declaration of intent that he was not married and had no children. However, David Baron and Roger Cibella’s research reported that Jacob married in France on June 20, 1940, and thereafter had two children born in France, one in December 1941 and one in 1952. Although I have no documentation of the marriage or the births of the children, I did find airline documents showing that the wife and two children visited Jacob in New York City during the 1950s.[^5] By 1964, Jacob had relocated to France, presumably to be closer to his family.5

Gabrielle Heimerdinger, Grete and Berthold’s daughter, married Erwin Vogel on September 8, 1943, in New York City.6 Erwin was born in Frankfurt, Germany, on June 23, 1921, to Kurt and Edith Vogel, and had immigrated to the US with his family in 1937, coming from Antwerp, Belgium. They settled in Chicago, where they were living in 1940.7

On his 1942 draft registration for World War II, Erwin was living in Hoboken, New Jersey, and working for the Stevens Institute of Technology, from which he received a master’s degree in mechanical engineering in 1944. Gabrielle and Erwin had four children.8

Erwin Vogel, World War II draft registration, The National Archives in St. Louis, Missouri; St. Louis, Missouri; WWII Draft Registration Cards for New Jersey, 10/16/1940-03/31/1947; Record Group: Records of the Selective Service System, 147; Box: 686
Ancestry.com. U.S. WWII Draft Cards Young Men, 1940-1947

Thus, Hedwig and her son Jacob and her daughter Grete and Grete’s family all survived the Holocaust. Grete’s husband Berthold Heimerdinger died in June 1961 at the age of 71.9 Hedwig died on December 9, 1964; she was 87.10 Jacob Goldschmidt died in October 1976 in France. He was eighty years old.11

Grete was the last surviving child of Marcel and Hedwig Goldschmidt. She lived a long life, dying on January 2, 2003, in New York at the age of 98.12 She had outlived her daughter Gabrielle Heimerdinger Vogel, who died January 19, 1990, in Rockville, Maryland, where she and her family had relocated in 1972.13 Gabrielle was 65 and was survived by her husband Erwin and their four children.

Grete and Jacob were fortunate to have left Germany when they did. The other two siblings, Else and Nelly, faced tragic deaths at the hands of the Nazis, as we will see in my next post.

 

 

 


  1. Hedwig Goldschmidt, ship manifest, Year: 1935; Arrival: New York, New York, USA; Microfilm Serial: T715, 1897-1957; Line: 1; Page Number: 80, Ship or Roll Number: Albert Ballin, Ancestry.com. New York, Passenger and Crew Lists (including Castle Garden and Ellis Island), 1820-1957 
  2. Hedwig Goldschmidt, ship manifest, Year: 1937; Arrival: New York, New York, USA; Microfilm Serial: T715, 1897-1957; Line: 1; Page Number: 8, Ship or Roll Number: Manhattan, Ancestry.com. New York, Passenger and Crew Lists (including Castle Garden and Ellis Island), 1820-1957 
  3. Hedwig Goldschmidt, ship manifest 1938, The National Archives of the UK; Kew, Surrey, England; Board of Trade: Commercial and Statistical Department and successors: Inwards Passenger Lists.; Class: BT26; Piece: 1158, Month: Mar, Ancestry.com. UK and Ireland, Incoming Passenger Lists, 1878-1960 
  4. Berthold Heimerdinger and family, 1940 US census, Census Place: New York, Queens, New York; Roll: m-t0627-02732; Page: 5B; Enumeration District: 41-614, Ancestry.com. 1940 United States Federal Census 
  5. This information came from his mother’s death announcement in the December 11, 1964, New York Times, p, 39, found at https://timesmachine.nytimes.com/timesmachine/1964/12/11/97361257.html?pageNumber=39 
  6.  Gabrielle J Heimerdinger, Gender: Female, Marriage License Date: 8 Sep 1943, Marriage License Place: Manhattan, New York City, New York, USA, Spouse: Erwin Vogel, License Number: 21889, New York City Municipal Archives; New York, New York; Borough: Manhattan; Volume Number: 9, Ancestry.com. New York, New York, Marriage License Indexes, 1907-2018 
  7. Kurt Vogel and family, 1940 US census, Year: 1940; Census Place: Chicago, Cook, Illinois; Roll: m-t0627-00934; Page: 1A; Enumeration District: 103-447, Ancestry.com. 1940 United States Federal Census. 
  8. “Unconventional Aeronautics Engineer Erwin Vogel, 88, Dies,” The Washington Post, October 28, 2009, found at https://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/10/27/AR2009102703825.html 
  9.  Berthold Heimerdinger, Social Security Number: 085-28-3608, Birth Date: 10 Sep
    Issue Year: 1952-1953, Issue State: New York, Death Date: Jun 1961, Social Security Administration; Washington D.C., USA; Social Security Death Index, Master File, Ancestry.com. U.S., Social Security Death Index, 1935-2014 
  10. December 11, 1964, New York Times, p, 39, found at https://timesmachine.nytimes.com/timesmachine/1964/12/11/97361257.html?pageNumber=39 
  11.  Jacob Goldschmidt, Social Security Number: 085-28-0743, Birth Date: 1 Jul 1896
    Issue Year: 1952-1953, Issue State: New York, Last Residence: 912, (U.S. Consulate) Paris, France, Death Date: Oct 1976, Social Security Administration; Washington D.C., USA; Social Security Death Index, Master File, Ancestry.com. U.S., Social Security Death Index, 1935-2014 
  12. Greta Goldschmidt Heimerdinger, Birth Date: 25 Sep 1904, Birth Place: Frankfurt, Federal Republic of Germany, Death Date: 2 Jan 2003, Father: Marcel Goldschmidt
    Mother: Hedwig Goldschmidt, SSN: 064167857, Ancestry.com. U.S., Social Security Applications and Claims Index, 1936-2007 
  13. Gabrielle Joan Heimerdinger, [Gabrielle Vogel], Birth Date: 16 Dec 1924, Birth Place: Wiesbaden, Federal Republic of Germany, Death Date: 19 Jan 1990, Father: Berthold Heimerdinger, Mother: Grete Goldschmidt, SSN: 102185390
    Ancestry.com. U.S., Social Security Applications and Claims Index, 1936-2007 

Two Sisters Who Were Second Cousins Married Brothers: More Twists in the Goldschmidt Family Tree

This post and the ones that follow will focus on Jacob and Jettchen’s fourth child, Mayer Goldschmidt,  who, like his brother Julius, married a first cousin. On August 30, 1895, he married Hedwig Goldschmidt, who was born on January 1, 1877, to Falk Goldschmidt and Babette Carlebach, in Frankfurt.

Marriage record of Mayer Goldschmidt and Hedwig Goldschmidt, Certificate Number: 1392
Hessisches Hauptstaatsarchiv; Wiesbaden, Deutschland; Bestand: 903,  Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Marriages, 1849-1930

Hedwig’s father Falk Goldschmidt was Jacob Meier Goldschmidt’s younger brother, so Mayer and Hedwig were first cousins on their paternal sides. Hedwig was seventeen years younger than Mayer and only eighteen when she married him; he was 35.

The annotation on the left margin of the marriage record was translated by Matthias Steinke of the German Genealogy Group on Facebook:

Frankfurt am Main, at the 24th November
To the signing registrar came today, the personally known salesman Marcel Goldschmidt, residing in Frankfurt am Main, Fichtestrasse 18, and showed a permission of the royal district-president in Wiesbaden, dated 7th November 1902, P. I A. 9406 wherein he was permitted, to change his firstname from Mayer into Marcel.
Readed, confirmed and signed
Marcel Goldschmidt

Thus, Mayer changed his name from Mayer to Marcel in 1902 when he was 42 years old.

Marcel and Hedwig had four children, Jacob, Nelly, Else, and Grete.

Jacob Goldschmidit (named for his grandfather and to be referred to as Jacob Goldschmidt II) was born on July 1, 1896, in Frankfurt.

Jacob Goldschmidt II birth record, Hessisches Hauptstaatsarchiv; Wiesbaden, Deutschland; Bestand: 903; Signatur: 903_9170, Year Range: 1896, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Births, 1851-1901

Their second child was named Nelly Goldschmidt. She was born on July 16, 1898, in Frankfurt:

Nelly Goldschmidt, birth record, Hessisches Hauptstaatsarchiv; Wiesbaden, Deutschland; Bestand: 903; Signatur: 903_9206, Year Range: 1898, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Births, 1851-1901

Else Goldschmidt was born on October 2, 1902, in Frankfurt.1 Then Marcel and Hedwig had a third daughter and fourth child, Grete Goldschmidt, born on September 25, 1904, in Frankfurt.2

Because Marcel and Hedwig were first cousins, their four children were not just siblings, but also second cousins to each other. All three daughters married in the 1920s. Amazingly, none married a cousin. But two of them married men who were brothers.

Nelly Goldschmidt married Moritz Gutmann on August 2, 1920, in Frankfurt.  Moritz was born on June 1, 1892, in Stuttgart, Germany. Some sources say his parents were Hermann Gutmann and Jettchen Ries, but I have not found a record to verify that since the marriage record does not include the names of his parents.

Marriage record of Nelly Goldschmidt and Moritz Gutmann, Hessisches Hauptstaatsarchiv; Wiesbaden, Deutschland; Bestand: 903, Year Range: 1920, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Marriages, 1849-1930

Nelly and Moritz had one child, a son Karl Hermann Gutmann, born on May 4, 1923, in Frankfurt.3

Nelly’s younger sister Else Goldschmidt married Nelly’s presumed brother-in-law Siegfried Gutmann on May 15, 1922, in Frankfurt. He was born April 28, 1886, in Stuttgart, to Hermann Guttmann and Jettchen Ries. Siegfried was sixteen years older than Else and had served in World War I for Germany.4

Marriage record of Else Goldschmidt and Siegfried Gutmann, Hessisches Hauptstaatsarchiv; Wiesbaden, Deutschland; Bestand: 903, Year Range: 1922, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Marriages, 1849-1930

Else and Siegfried had one child, Hermann Guttmann, born February 28, 1923, in Frankfurt.5 He later changed his name to Dennis John Goodman.

The third sister Grete Goldschmidt married Berthold Heimerdinger on January 18, 1924, in Frankfurt.6 Berthold was the son of Moritz Heimerdinger and Leontine Seligmann; he was born on September 20, 1890, in Wiesbaden, Germany. Berthold was slightly wounded while serving in World War I for Germany.7

After marrying, Grete and Berthold settled in Wiesbaden, where their daughter Gabrielle Heimerdinger was born on December 16, 1924.8

Marcel (Mayer) Goldschmidt lived long enough to see his three daughters married and several of his grandchildren born, but then died on November 2, 1928, in Koenigstein im Taunus, Germany. He  was 68.

Marcel Goldschmidt, death record, Personenstandsregister Sterberegister; Bestand: 908; Laufende Nummer: 1933, Year Range: 1928, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Deaths, 1851-1958

I was curious about the location of his death since Marcel was a resident of Frankfurt. According to Wikipedia, Koenigstein im Taunus, located about 15 miles northwest of Frankfurt, was “famous as “Jewish spa” mainly due to the high proportions of Jewish guests …. who stayed in the internationally famous sanitarium Dr. Kohnstamm … and Hotel Cahn, which offered kosher food. For these reasons, Königstein was an attractive city to visit for a day trip for many Jews in Frankfurt. Königstein became even more easily accessible from Frankfurt am Main in 1906, when the railway between Königstein and Frankfurt was built.”

Koenigsburg im Taunus, Brion Vibber / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)

Life was thus very good for Marcel, Hedwig, and their children and grandchildren up through the 1920s. Much would change in the 1930s.


  1. Else Goldschmidt, Gender: weiblich (Female), Age: 19, Birth Date: 2 Okt 1902 (2 Oct 1902), Marriage Date: 15 Mai 1922 (15 May 1922), Marriage Place: Frankfurt am Main, Hessen (Hesse), Deutschland (Germany), Civil Registration Office: Frankfurt am Main, Spouse: Siegfried Gutmann, Certificate Number: 561, Hessisches Hauptstaatsarchiv; Wiesbaden, Deutschland; Bestand: 903, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Marriages, 1849-1930 
  2. Grete Goldschmid, Birth Date: 25 Sep 1904, Birth Place: Frankfurt, Federal Republic of Germany, Father: Marcel Goldschmidt, Mother: Hedwig Goldschmidt
    SSN: 064167857, Ancestry.com. U.S., Social Security Applications and Claims Index, 1936-2007 
  3. Karl Herrmann Gutmann, Birth Date: 4 May 1923, Birth Place: Frankfurt, Federal Republic of Germany, Father: Moritz Gubmann, Mother: Nelly Goldschmidt, SSN: 067180184, Ancestry.com. U.S., Social Security Applications and Claims Index, 1936-2007 
  4. Siegfried Gutmann, Residence Year: 1914, Residence Country: Deutschland (Germany), List Date: 21 Nov 1918, List Number: 2218, Volume: 1918_XVI, Ancestry.com. Germany, World War I Casualty Lists, 1914-1919 
  5. Dennis John Goodman, Gender: Male, Marital status: Single, Birth Date: 28 fev 1923 (28 Feb 1923), Birth Place: Frankfort, Arrival Date: 1949, Arrival Place: Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Father: Sigfried Goodman, Mother: Elsa Goodman
    Traveling With Children: No, FHL Film Number: 004564017, Ancestry.com. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Immigration Cards, 1900-1965 
  6. Grete Goldschmidt Heimerdinger naturalization papers, The National Archives at Philadelphia; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; NAI Title: Declarations of Intention for Citizenship, 1/19/1842 – 10/29/1959; NAI Number: 4713410; Record Group Title: Records of District Courts of the United States, 1685-2009; Record Group Number: 21, Description: (Roll 478) Declarations of Intention for Citizenship, 1842-1959 (No 355901-357000), Ancestry.com. New York, State and Federal Naturalization Records, 1794-1943 
  7. Berthold Heimerdinger, Residence Year: 1914, Residence Country: Deutschland (Germany), List Date: 22 Sep 1917, List Number: 1637, Volume: 1917_XVI, Ancestry.com. Germany, World War I Casualty Lists, 1914-1919 
  8. Gabrielle Joan Heimerdinger, Birth Date: 16 Dec 1924, Birth Place: Wiesbaden, Federal Republic of Germany, Father: Berthold Heimerdinger, Mother: Grete Goldschmidt, SSN: 102185390, Ancestry.com. U.S., Social Security Applications and Claims Index, 1936-2007. According to Cibella/Baron, Grete and Berthold had two other children, but they did not have any dates for these other two, and I found no records for any other children born to Grete and Berthold. 

Leni and Julius Falk Goldschmidt and Their Sons: Escaping from Germany

 

Julius Goldschmidt, my second cousin, three times removed, died on January 5, 1932, in Bad Homburg, Germany; he was seventy-three.  Bad Homburg was “an internationally fashionable spa”  not far from Frankfurt (about eleven miles), and it appears from the death record that Julius was living there at the time of his death.

Bad Homburg, M. Jacobs, Frankfurt a. Main / Public domain

He had been preceded in death by two of his children, Mimi and Amalie, and was survived by his wife Elise Seligmann, their daughter Helene “Leni” Goldschmidt, and Leni’s husband (and cousin) Julius Falk Goldschmidt, and their two sons, Felix and Hermann; their son Jacob Goldschmidt; and their daughter Regina Goldschmidt Rosenberger, her husband Siegfried Rosenberger, and their two children.

Julius Goldschmidt death record, Personenstandsregister Sterberegister; Bestand: 908; Laufende Nummer: 1585, Year Range: 1932, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Deaths, 1851-1958

Jacob (Julius) Goldschmidt only survived his father by two years. According to David Baron and Roger Cibella, he died at the age of 44 in Paris, France, on November 28, 1934. That left Leni Goldschmidt Goldschmidt and Regina Goldschmidt Rosenberger as Julius and Elise’s only surviving children.

I don’t know a great deal about what happened to Regina, her husband Siegfried Rosenberger, and their two children during the Holocaust. It appears that at least until 1937 they were still living in Frankfurt1 and that after the war, according to Roger Cibella and David Baron, their two children were both married in the Netherlands and had children born there. Eventually they all immigrated to Canada where Regina died in February 1992;2 according to Cibella/Baron, Siegfried had died in France in 1949. Regina filed Pages of Testimony with Yad Vashem for family members who were killed in the Holocaust, as we have seen and as we will see in future posts.

The remainder of this post will focus on Leni (Helene II) and Julius Falk Goldschmidt and their sons.

I will start in a strange place to tell their story: Leni’s husband,Julius Falk Goldschmidt, who was also her father Julius’ first cousin. Focusing on the in-law is not usually what I would do, and it would have made more sense to wait and tell his story when I get to Jacob Meier Goldschmidt’s younger brother Falk, who was Julius Falk Goldschmidt’s father. But because we are telling Leni’s story now and her story is entwined with that of her husband, I can’t delay the story of Julius Falk Goldschmidt.

Some of my readers may recall how I found an obituary for Julius Falk Goldschmidt in one of Milton Goldsmith’s family albums, attached to a page that included a replica of an ancient ketubah, and I had wondered why it was there and how Milton knew this distant cousin well enough to refer to him as “beloved” and include his obituary in an album otherwise devoted to Milton’s closest relatives, his immediate family. I also was puzzled by the ketubah reproduction included on that page.

I decided to see if I could locate the source of this tribute to Julius Falk Goldschmidt. I noticed that it was written by someone named John Pope-Hennessy, who I learned was a British art historian and at one time the director of the Victoria and Albert Museum, the British Museum, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art.3 By Googling his name and Julius F. Goldschmidt, I was able to locate the source of Pope-Hennessy’s tribute to Julius. It was published on December 1, 1964, in The Times of London on page 12.

Pope-Hennessy included this background information about Julius in that tribute:

Born in Frankfurt in 1882, Goldschmidt as a young man became a member of the celebrated firm of J.M.S. Goldschmidt, which had been founded in 1859 by his father [Falk Goldschmidt] and two uncles [Selig and Jacob Goldschmidt] and which numbered among its clients the Tsar, the German Emperor and members of the Rothschild family. His interests from the first were canalized in sculpture, and especially bronze statuettes, and after 1905, when a branch of the first was established in the United States, he played an active part in the formation of the Pierpont Morgan, Altman, Widener and Bache collection.

Thus, Julius Falk Goldschmidt had been traveling back and forth to the US long before Hitler’s rise to power. In fact, I found a 1909 passenger manifest showing him traveling to the US with Leni and her brother Jacob, as mentioned in the prior post.

Year: 1909; Arrival: New York, New York; Microfilm Serial: T715, 1897-1957; Microfilm Roll: Roll 1381; Line: 1; Page Number: 120 Description Ship or Roll Number: Roll 1381 Source Information Ancestry.com. New York, Passenger and Crew Lists (including Castle Garden and Ellis Island), 1820-1957

Moreover, Julius Falk filed a declaration of intention to become a US citizen on January 16, 1924, after “immigrating” on November 21, 1923.

Julius F Goldschmidt declaration of intention, The National Archives at Philadelphia; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; NAI Title: Declarations of Intention for Citizenship, 1/19/1842 – 10/29/1959; NAI Number: 4713410; Record Group Title: Records of District Courts of the United States, 1685-2009; Record Group Number: 21, Description: (Roll 249) Declarations of Intention for Citizenship, 1842-1959 (No 124581-125078), Ancestry.com. New York, State and Federal Naturalization Records, 1794-1943

That explains how Julius Falk and Milton Goldsmith may have become closely acquainted as Milton was living in New York City at that time. As for the ketubah reproduction, the Goldschmidt firm also specialized in Judaica, so perhaps this was a reproduction of a ketubah that the firm had collected.

Julius Falk Goldschmidt did not, however, follow through on his declaration of intention, but returned to Frankfurt, where he remained a resident until 1935. According to Pope-Hennessy (see above), Julius Falk moved that year to London and continued his work for the Goldschmidt firm. Records indicate that Julius Falk Goldschmidt, his wife Helene, and their older son Felix were all residing in England in 1939, as was Helene’s mother Elise Seligmann Goldschmidt.4

Julius, Leni, and Felix Goldschmidt, The National Archives; Kew, London, England; 1939 Register; Reference: RG 101/420B, Enumeration District: APDK, Ancestry.com. 1939 England and Wales Register

Julius F. and Helene’s younger son Hermann left for the United States on September 2, 1939, the day after World War II began. He was 26 at the time.5 His declaration of intention to become a US citizen, which was filed on December 21, 1939, indicated that his last place of foreign residence was Paris and that he had immigrated from Montreal into the US at Rouses Point, New York, which is the first town over the US border from Canada about 45 miles south of Montreal. At the time he filed his declaration, Hermann was living in New York City.

Hermann Goldschmidt declaration of intention, The National Archives at Philadelphia; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; NAI Title: Declarations of Intention for Citizenship, 1/19/1842 – 10/29/1959; NAI Number: 4713410; Record Group Title: Records of District Courts of the United States, 1685-2009; Record Group Number: 21, Description: (Roll 572) Declarations of Intention for Citizenship, 1842-1959 (No 448201-449000), Ancestry.com. New York, State and Federal Naturalization Records, 1794-1943

I couldn’t find Hermann on the 1940 US census, but I did find his draft registration dated October 24, 1940; he had dropped the second N from his first name and registered as Herman Goldschmidt. (Later he became Herman Goldsmith.) At that time he was living in New York City and working for Julius Kayser & Company, a large manufacturer of women’s gloves, hosiery, and silk underwear, today known as Kayser-Roth.

Herman Goldschmidt, Ancestry.com. U.S. WWII Draft Cards Young Men, 1940-1947

Meanwhile, Herman’s brother Felix and parents Helene and Julius Falk Goldschmidt and grandmother Elise Seligmann Goldschmidt were living in England. Both Julius Falk and his son Felix were interned as enemy aliens on June 21, 1940, although both had previously been found exempt from internship on November 28, 1939. It appears they were released just two months later on August 28, 1940. Helene and her mother were spared from internment. Julius listed his occupation as art dealer, and Felix reported that he was a “company director and art dealer” for his father’s firm. All four family members were living at the same address in London.

Julius F Goldschmidt, Enemy Alien registration, The National Archives; Kew, London, England; HO 396 WW2 Internees (Aliens) Index Cards 1939-1947; Reference Number: HO 396/174
Piece Number Description: 174: German Internees Released in UK 1939-1942: Ga-Gom
Ancestry.com. UK, WWII Alien Internees, 1939-1945

Felix Goldschmidt, enemy alien registration, The National Archives; Kew, London, England; HO 396 WW2 Internees (Aliens) Index Cards 1939-1947; Reference Number: HO 396/109
Piece Number Description: 109: Canada Internees 1939-1942: G-H, Ancestry.com. UK, WWII Alien Internees, 1939-1945

Elise Seligmann Goldschmidt died in 1943 in London; she was 79 years old and was survived by her daughter Helene, son-in-law Julius Falk Goldschmidt, and two grandsons, Felix and Herman.6

After the war Felix joined his brother Herman in the US, where he married and had a child.7 Herman never married. Their parents Helene and Julius Falk Goldschmidt remained in England for the rest of their lives. Julius Falk Goldschmidt died on November 18, 1964, in London.8 Pope-Hennessy opined that with the death of Julius Goldschmidt, “the London art world loses one of its most warmly regarded personalities.” It went on to describe his interests, his appearance, and his personality. It’s quite a poetic and beautiful obituary.

Julius Falk Goldschmidt was survived by his wife Helene, who died in London six years later in 1970,9 and their two sons, Felix and Herman, and one grandchild. Felix died on March 10, 1989, in Greenwich, Connecticut; he was 78.10 His brother Herman lived until October 7, 2016; he was two months shy of his 104th birthday when he died.11

Here was another family that survived the Holocaust, but lost their homeland with the sons living on one continent, their parents on another. Herman Goldsmith’s incredible longevity is quite a testament to the strength of this family.

 

 


  1. Amtliches Fernsprechbuch für den Bezirk der Reichspostdirektion Frankfurt am Main, 1937, Ancestry.com. German Phone Directories, 1915-1981 
  2. Regina Rosenberger, Burial Date: 27 Feb 1992, Burial Plot: 53-F-23, Burial Place: North York, Ontario, Canada, Cemetery: Bathurst Lawn Memorial Park, JewishGen, comp. JewishGen Online Worldwide Burial Registry (JOWBR) 
  3. John Russell, “Sir John Pope-Hennessy, 80, Art Expert, Dies,” The New York Times, November 1, 1994, p.36. 
  4.  The National Archives; Kew, London, England; HO 396 WW2 Internees (Aliens) Index Cards 1939-1947; Reference Number: HO 396/226, Ancestry.com. UK, WWII Alien Internees, 1939-1945 
  5. Ship Name: Empress Of Britain, Shipping Line: Canadian Pacific
    Official Number: 162582, Ancestry.com. UK and Ireland, Outward Passenger Lists, 1890-1960 
  6. Registration Quarter: Jan-Feb-Mar, Registration district: Paddington
    Inferred County: London, Volume: 1a, Page: 23, General Register Office; United Kingdom; Volume: 1a; Page: 23, Ancestry.com. England & Wales, Civil Registration Death Index, 1916-2007 
  7.  Arrival Date: 8 Feb 1949, Port of Arrival: Buffalo, New York, USA
    Arrival Contact: Brother Herman Goldsmith, The National Archives at Washington, D.C.; Washington, D.C.; Manifests of Alien Arrivals at Buffalo, Lewiston, Niagara Falls, and Rochester, New York, 1902-1954; Record Group Title: Records of the Immigration and Naturalization Service, 1787 – 2004; Record Group Number: 85; Series Number: M1480; Roll Number: 045, Ancestry.com. U.S., Border Crossings from Canada to U.S., 1895-1960 
  8.  Registration Quarter: Oct-Nov-Dec, Registration district: Paddington
    Inferred County: London, Volume: 5d, Page: 198, General Register Office; United Kingdom; Volume: 5d; Page: 198, Ancestry.com. England & Wales, Civil Registration Death Index, 1916-2007 
  9.  Registration Quarter: Oct-Nov-Dec, Registration district: Paddington
    Inferred County: Greater London, Volume: 5d, Page: 1218, General Register Office; United Kingdom; Volume: 5d; Page: 1218, Ancestry.com. England & Wales, Civil Registration Death Index, 1916-2007 
  10. Feliz A Goldschmidt, Birth Date: 10 Sep 1910, Death Date: 10 Mar 1989
    SSN: 061264467, Death Certificate Number: 05428, Ancestry.com. U.S., Social Security Applications and Claims Index, 1936-2007 
  11. https://www.legacy.com/obituaries/nytimes/obituary.aspx?n=herman-goldsmith&pid=182198098 

Jacob Meier Goldschmidt’s Third Child, Julius Goldschmidt: Cousins Marrying Cousins Who Married Cousins

Jacob Meier Goldschmidt’s third child Julius Goldschmidt married Elise Seligmann on June 9, 1882. Elise was the daughter of Hermann Seligmann and Regina Cahn. She was born on April 23, 1863, in Frankfurt.

Marriage record of Julius Goldschmidt and Elise Seligmann, Hessisches Hauptstaatsarchiv; Wiesbaden, Deutschland; Signatur: 9417, Year Range: 1882, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Marriages, 1849-1930

When I saw that Elise’s mother’s birth name was Regina Cahn, I wondered whether she was possibly related to Jettchen Cahn, her husband Julius’ mother. I knew that Jettchen’s parents were Aaron Simon Cahn and Minna Gamburg, as seen on her marriage record. I looked for records for Elise’s mother Regina Cahn and learned that indeed her parents were also Aaron Simon Cahn and Minna Gamburg. That meant that Julius had married his first cousin on his mother’s side, his mother’s sister’s daughter.

Julius and Elise had five children, Helene, Mimi, Jacob, Amalie and Regina.

Helene Goldschmidt was born on January 16, 1886, in Frankfurt. And that meant there were two family members named Helene Goldschmidt, Julius’ sister (Helene I) and his daughter (Helene II). Helene Goldschmidt II was also apparently known as Leni, so I will often just refer to her by her nickname. [It makes this work so much harder when the family keeps repeating names: Jacob, Amalie, and Regina are also the names of some of Julius’ siblings and cousins.]

Helene Goldschmidt II birth record, Hessisches Hauptstaatsarchiv; Wiesbaden, Deutschland; Bestand: 903; Signatur: 903_9015, Year Range: 1886, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Births, 1851-1901

Mimi was born in August 9, 1887, but died three years later on February 16, 1891.

Mimi Goldschmidt death record, Personenstandsregister Sterberegister; Bestand: 903; Signatur: 10440, Year Range: 1891, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Deaths, 1851-1958

Jacob Goldschmidt, to be referred to as Jacob (Julius) Goldschmidt to distinguish him from all the others with that name, was born on September 27, 1890, in Frankfurt.

Jacob (Julius) Goldschmidt, birth record, Hessisches Hauptstaatsarchiv; Wiesbaden, Deutschland; Bestand: 903; Signatur: 903_9076, Year Range: 1890, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Births, 1851-1901

A third daughter, Amalie, was born in 1892 and also died as a young child. She died on November 22, 1893, in Frankfurt, when she was only a year old.

Amalie Goldschmidt death record, Personenstandsregister Sterberegister; Bestand: 903; Signatur: 10466, Year Range: 1893, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Deaths, 1851-1958

Finally, Regina Goldschmidt was born on March 7, 1900, in Frankfurt.1

Unfortunately, the death records for Mimi and Amalie do not reveal the cause of death. Losing two young children must have been devastating, and I do wonder whether being the children of first cousins contributed in any way to their deaths.

On May 1, 1905, Helene Goldschmidt II married Julius Falk Goldschmidt, son of Falk Goldschmidt, her grandfather Jacob’s brother.

Marriage record of Helene Goldschmidt II to Julius Falk Goldschmidt, Hessisches Hauptstaatsarchiv; Wiesbaden, Deutschland; Bestand: 903, Year Range: 1905, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Marriages, 1849-1930

Julius Falk Goldschmidt and Leni’s father Julius Goldschmidt (son of Jacob Meier Goldschmidt) were first cousins. That is, Leni Goldschmidt and her husband Julius Falk Goldschmidt were first cousins, once removed.

In November, 1909, Leni and her husband Julius Falk and her younger brother Jacob all traveled to New York from Cherbourg. The ship manifest indicated that Julius Falk and Jacob were merchants and that they were all non-immigrant aliens.  Julius Falk and Jacob were traveling on business, and Leni was traveling for pleasure.

Goldschmidt, ship manifest, Year: 1909; Arrival: New York, New York; Microfilm Serial: T715, 1897-1957; Microfilm Roll: Roll 1381; Line: 1; Page Number: 120 Description Ship or Roll Number: Roll 1381 Source Information Ancestry.com. New York, Passenger and Crew Lists (including Castle Garden and Ellis Island), 1820-1957

Year: 1909; Arrival: New York, New York; Microfilm Serial: T715, 1897-1957; Microfilm Roll: Roll 1381; Line: 1; Page Number: 120 Description Ship or Roll Number: Roll 1381 Source Information Ancestry.com. New York, Passenger and Crew Lists (including Castle Garden and Ellis Island), 1820-1957

Leni and Julius Falk Goldschmidt had their first child, Felix Arthur Goldschmidt, on September 10, 1910, in Frankfurt.2 His brother Hermann Goldschmidt was born on December 6, 1912, in Frankfurt. 3

I didn’t want to even try and calculate how Hermann and Felix were related to each other in addition to being brothers, given that two of their maternal great-grandmothers were sisters (I think that means Felix and Hermann were third cousins) and their parents were first cousins, once removed (making Felix and Herman their mother’s second cousins as well as her sons, I think).

Jacob (Julius) Goldschmidt married Nellie Jaffa, daughter of Maximilian Jaffa and Toni Babette Landsberger, in Berlin on October 11, 1918; Nellie was born in Berlin on January 17, 1899.

Marriage record of Jacob Goldschmidt and Nellie Jaffa, Certificate Number: 515
Archive Sequence Number: 433, Register Type: Zum Erstregister erklärtes Zweitregister
Ancestry.com. Berlin, Germany, Marriages, 1874-1920

The marriage did not last long, as they were divorced on October 25, 1922, as indicated on the marriage record’s notation in the upper right hand corner. Not long after, Jacob immigrated to the US and became a naturalized US citizen on March 20, 1924:

Jacob Goldschmidt, naturalzation certificate, The National Archives at Philadelphia; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; NAI Title: Declarations of Intention for Citizenship, 1/19/1842 – 10/29/1959; NAI Number: 4713410; Record Group Title: Records of District Courts of the United States, 1685-2009; Record Group Number: 21, (Roll 257) Declarations of Intention for Citizenship, 1842-1959 (No 127601-128400), Ancestry.com. New York, State and Federal Naturalization Records, 1794-1943

Note that like so many others in the Goldschmidt family, Jacob was an art dealer. Note also that he indicated that he was unmarried.

The youngest of Julius and Elise’s chidlren, Regina, married Siegfried Rosenberger on March 10, 1921, in Frankfurt. Siegfried was the son of Sigmund and Dina Rosenberger and was born on July 25, 1889, in Stuttgart.

Marriage record of Regina Blanche Goldschmidt and Siegfried Rosenberger, Hessisches Hauptstaatsarchiv; Wiesbaden, Deutschland; Bestand: 903, 1921, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Marriages, 1849-1930

Regina and Siegfried had two children born in the 1920s.

Thus, by 1925, the two surviving daughters of Julius and Elise, Leni and Regina, were married and had children, and their brother Jacob had immigrated to the US where he was an art dealer. The story of Julius and Elise and their two daughters and family from the 1930s onward will continue in the next post.

 


  1. Regina Goldschmidt marriage record, Certificate Number: 251
    Hessisches Hauptstaatsarchiv; Wiesbaden, Deutschland; Bestand: 903, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Marriages, 1849-1930 
  2. Felix Goldschmidt, Birth Date: 10 Sep 1910, Birth Place: Frankfurt am Main, National Archives and Records Administration (NARA); Washington, DC; Name Index of Jews Whose German Nationality Was Annulled by the Nazi Regime (Berlin Documents Center); Record Group: 242, National Archives Collection of Foreign Records Seized, 1675 – 1958; Record Group ARC ID: 569; Publication Number: T355; Roll: 3, Fränkel, Werner – Hartmann, Hermann, Ancestry.com. Germany, Index of Jews Whose German Nationality was Annulled by Nazi Regime, 1935-1944 
  3.  Hermann Goldschmidt, Birth Date: 6 Dez 1912, Birth Place: Frankfurt am Main,
    National Archives and Records Administration (NARA); Washington, DC; Name Index of Jews Whose German Nationality Was Annulled by the Nazi Regime (Berlin Documents Center); Record Group: 242, National Archives Collection of Foreign Records Seized, 1675 – 1958; Record Group ARC ID: 569; Publication Number: T355; Roll: 3, Fränkel, Werner – Hartmann, Hermann. Ancestry.com. Germany, Index of Jews Whose German Nationality was Annulled by Nazi Regime, 1935-1944 

Ferdinand and Friederike Meyer: Why Did She Stay Behind?

As noted in my earlier post, Regina Goldschmidt and Aaron Meyer’s four oldest children had varying experiences during the Holocaust. Alfred appears to have escaped to France, but I don’t know where he was thereafter. Jacob died in 1928, but his wife and children escaped to England and Argentina in the 1930s; Max had his family ended up in Argentina. And Siegfried was killed at the Nazi concentration camp Theresienstadt in 1943. Their youngest child Amalie escaped to England and then the US. Today I will tell the story of their son Ferdinand.

Ferdinand Meyer had married Friederike Jaenecke, a non-Jewish woman, in 1920, and they had two children, Eleanore and Erich.  Even though Friederike was not born Jewish and her children were only half-Jewish, it appears that they faced persecution as Jews.

Friederike herself is included on a document from the Arolsen Archives that lists the “Deutsche Juden,” German Jews, living in Frankfurt. For Friederike, it records that the “Daten d. Austellung d. Urkunden,” the date of exhibiting certificates, was in 1939. What I didn’t understand is why Friederike was listed here, but not her husband or children.

Arolsen Archives, Digital Archive; Bad Arolsen, Germany; Lists of Persecutees 2.1.1.1; Series: 2.1.1.1, Description, Reference Code: 02010101 oS, Ancestry.com. Europe, Registration of Foreigners and German Persecutees, 1939-1947

Also, she was still classified as Aryan (Arisch) on this document found in the Arolsen Archives:

Arolsen Archives, Digital Archive; Bad Arolsen, Germany; Lists of Persecutees 2.1.1.1
Ancestry.com. Europe, Registration of Foreigners and German Persecutees, 1939-1947.
Original data: Arolsen Archives. Registration of Foreigners and German Persecutees by Public Institutions, Social Securities and Companies (1939-1947). Bad Arolsen, Germany. 2.1.1.1 American Zone; Bavaria Hesse; 2.1.1.2 American Zone: Bavaria, Wurttemberg-Baden, Bremen; 2.1.1.3 American Zone; Bavaria, Hesse (Children).

How do I reconcile this? And where was the rest of her family?

From several other documents I was able to piece together some of what happened. Ferdinand escaped to England some time before November 14, 1939, when he was initially exempted from being interned as an enemy alien. His record, however, indicates that he was interned as an enemy alien from June 21, 1940, until September 16, 1940.

Name: Ferdinand Meyer, Gender: Male, Nationality: German, Internment Age: 54, Birth Date: 27 Apr 1886, Birth Place: Germany, Internment Date: 21 Jun 1940, Discharge Date: 16 Sep 1940
The National Archives; Kew, London, England; HO 396 WW2 Internees (Aliens) Index Cards 1939-1947; Reference Number: HO 396/187, Ancestry.com. UK, WWII Alien Internees, 1939-1945

On October 31, 1940, Ferdinand left England and immigrated permanently to the US, arriving in Boston on November 16, 1940. The ship manifest recorded that his daughter E. Meyer was the person he left behind in England and that he was going to his son, E. Meyer, who resided at 627 Commonwealth Avenue in Boston, Massachusetts. Thus, Erich was already in the US.

Ferdinand Meyer, ship manifest, The National Archives at Washington, D.C.; Washington, D.C.; Series Title: Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Boston, Massachusetts, 1891-1943; NAI Number: 4319742; Record Group Title: Records of the Immigration and Naturalization Service, 1787-2004; Record Group Number: 85; Series Number: T843; NARA Roll Number: 451 Description Month or Roll: 451  Ancestry.com. Massachusetts, Passenger and Crew Lists, 1820-1963

Erich had arrived on March 9, 1940, from England, so he also had escaped from Germany to England, presumably with his father and sister. He was only sixteen when they then put him on a ship for the US. Interestingly, the ship manifest indicates that he was heading to Niagara Falls, New York, as his permanent destination after landing in New York. Handwritten on the manifest it names August Kuhlman of Niagara Falls, New York as the person at his destination, but it also says that he was headed to an aunt, Lotto Karlmuller, who was living at 627 Commonwealth Avenue in Boston.1 That is the same address his father gave eight months later as Erich’s residence, so it appears that Erich did not end up going to Niagara Falls.

Erich Meyer, ship manifest, Year: 1940; Arrival: New York, New York; Microfilm Serial: T715, 1897-1957; Microfilm Roll: Roll 6452; Line: 1; Page Number: 78, Ancestry.com. New York, Passenger and Crew Lists (including Castle Garden and Ellis Island), 1820-1957

Ferdinand filed a declaration of intention to become a US citizen on March 15, 1941. On that declaration he indicated that his daughter Eleanor was in England and his son Eric was in Boston. Friederike must have still been outside of the US because the line indicating when she entered the country is crossed out. The 1941 Boston directory lists his address as 348 Beacon Street and his occupation as “atndt,” attendant, I assume. (He had listed no occupation on his declaration of intention.)2

Ferdinand Meyer, National Archives at Boston; Waltham, Massachusetts; ARC Title: Petitions and Records of Naturalization , 8/1845 – 12/1911; NAI Number: 3000057; Record Group Title: Records of District Courts of the United States, 1685-2009; Record Group Number: RG 21
Description: Declaration of Intention, V 501 No 295271, 2 Dec 1940 Breedy – V 503 No 297720, 17 Mar 1941 Oberg, Ancestry.com. Massachusetts, State and Federal Naturalization Records, 1798-1950

Friederike finally arrived in the US on August 9, 1941. Her declaration of intention to become a US citizen was filed on December 9, 1941, two days after Pearl Harbor. She indicated that her prior residence had been Frankfurt, Germany, so it appears she had not left when her husband and children did, and that explains why only she was listed on the Nazi record that appears above.  Her declaration also states that Eleanora (spelled with the A here) was still in England.

Friederike Meyer, declaration of intention, National Archives at Boston; Waltham, Massachusetts; ARC Title: Petitions and Records of Naturalization , 8/1845 – 12/1911; NAI Number: 3000057; Record Group Title: Records of District Courts of the United States, 1685-2009; Record Group Number: RG 21, Description: Declaration of Intention, V 512 No 305021, Oct 1941 Rydar – V 514 No 307480, Jan 1942 Patturelli, Ancestry.com. Massachusetts, State and Federal Naturalization Records, 1798-1950

Ferdinand and his son Eric both registered for the draft in the US. Ferdinand listed his address as 99 Norway Street in Boston and also reported that he was self-employed at 152 Massachusetts Avenue in Arlington, Massachusetts. That caught my eye because for six years from 1975 to 1981 we lived in Arlington less than a mile from that address. I was very curious as to what Ferdinand might have been doing there since he lived in Boston, not Arlington, but I had no luck figuring that out.

Ferdinand Meyer, World War II draft registration, The National Archives at St. Louis; St. Louis, Missouri; World War II Draft Cards (Fourth Registration) for the State of Massachusetts; Record Group Title: Records of the Selective Service System; Record Group Number: 147; Series Number: M2090, Ancestry.com. U.S., World War II Draft Registration Cards, 1942

Erich registered for the draft, changing his name from Erich Adalbert Meyer to Eric Albert Meyer. He was living at the same address as his father Ferdinand, 99 Norway Street in Boston, and was working for Universal Tire and Auto Supply Company in Boston.

Eric Meyer, World War II draft registration, The National Archives in St. Louis, Missouri; St. Louis, Missouri; Draft Registration Cards for Massachusetts, 10/16/1940-03/31/1947; Record Group: Records of the Selective Service System, 147; Box: 662, Ancestry.com. U.S. WWII Draft Cards Young Men, 1940-1947

He enlisted in the US Army on June 23, 1944, for the duration of the war.3 While he was in the service and stationed in Jacksonville, Florida, he petitioned for naturalization.

Eric Meyer, petition for naturalizaiton, The National Archives at Atlanta, Georgia; Atlanta, Georgia; ARC Title: Petitions for Naturalization, compiled 1880 – 1975; NAI Number: 2111793; Record Group Title: Records of District Courts of the United States; Record Group Number: 21
Description: Jacksonville Petitions 1895-1975 (Box 09), Ancestry.com. Florida, Naturalization Records, 1847-1995

Ferdinand Meyer did not live long after his immigration to the United States. He died in 1946 in Arlington, Massachusetts.4 He was only sixty years old. His wife Friederike survived him by close to thirty years. She died in September, 1974; her last residence was Yonkers, New York.5

Eric A. Meyer survived his parents. He graduated from Northeastern University in 1950 with a degree in mechanical engineering and married Carol Zimmerman in 1953.5 In 1960 they were living in Cortlandt, New York, where Eric was working as a project engineer for Trinity Equipment Company.6 Eric died in February 1987 in Alabama at 63, only three years older than his father had been at his death;7 his wife Carol died in 2010.8 They were survived by eight children and numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

“U.S., School Yearbooks, 1880-2012”; School Name: Northeastern University; Year: 1950b
Ancestry.com. U.S., School Yearbooks, 1900-1999

I’ve been able to connect with one of Ferdinand and Friederike’s grandchildren, and she told me that Eleanore Meyer remained in England. She married a man named Francis Alban Cowper in 1948 in Chaddesley Corbett, Worcestershire, England, and they had five children.9 Thanks to my newly found cousin, I now have an obituary for Eleanore; she died on December 23, 2013, in Chaddesley Corbett, and was survived by her children and grandchildren. She was 94 years old.10

Unfortunately, my newly found cousin was unable to answer some of the questions that remain unanswered. For example, she didn’t know why Friederike did not leave Germany when her husband and children left. Did Friederike think that she  would be safe because she was not born Jewish? Had Friederike stayed behind for health reasons or to protect the family’s property? We don’t know, and we don’t know what her life was like between the time Ferdinand and her children left and her own departure from Germany.

So many questions left to answer, as there always are.


  1. There is an August Kuhlman in Niagara Falls on the 1930 and 1940 census who was born in about 1900 in Kansas; his mother Clara and his wife Irma were born in Germany. I don’t know how they were connected to Erich Meyer. I could not find anyone named Lotto Karlmuller or even with just the surname Karlmuller in Boston or anywhere else. 
  2.  Boston, Massachusetts, City Directory, 1941, Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995 
  3.  Ancestry.com. U.S., World War II Army Enlistment Records, 1938-1946. Original data: National Archives and Records Administration. Electronic Army Serial Number Merged File, 1938-1946 [Archival Database]; ARC: 1263923. World War II Army Enlistment Records; Records of the National Archives and Records Administration, Record Group 64; National Archives at College Park. College Park, Maryland, U.S.A. 
  4. Ferdinand Meyer, Death Date: 1946, Death Place: Arlington, Massachusetts, USA
    Volume Number: 2, Page Number: 231, Index Volume Number: 109, Reference Number: F63.M363 v.109, Ancestry.com. Massachusetts, Death Index, 1901-1980 
  5.  Eric A Meyer, Marriage Date: 26 Dec 1953, Marriage Place: Manlius, New York, USA, Spouse: Carol M Zimmerman, Certificate Number: 53763, New York State Department of Health; Albany, NY, USA; New York State Marriage Index, Ancestry.com. New York State, Marriage Index, 1881-1967 
  6. Cortland, New York, City Directory, 1960, Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995 
  7.  Eric Meyer, Social Security Number: 028-16-9998, Birth Date: 30 Jan 1924,
    Issue State: Massachusetts, Last Residence: 35226, Birmingham, Jefferson, Alabama, USA, Death Date: Feb 1987, Social Security Administration; Washington D.C., USA; Social Security Death Index, Master File, Ancestry.com. U.S., Social Security Death Index, 1935-2014 
  8. Carol Z. Meyer, Social Security Number: 278-22-7901, Birth Date: 2 May 1927
    Issue State: Ohio, Last Residence: 35048, Clay, Jefferson, Alabama, Death Date: 24 Aug 2010, Social Security Administration; Washington D.C., USA; Social Security Death Index, Master File, Ancestry.com. U.S., Social Security Death Index, 1935-2014 
  9. Eleanore Meyer, Registration Date: Jan 1948, [Feb 1948], [Mar 1948],
    Registration Quarter: Jan-Feb-Mar, Registration district: Kidderminster, Inferred County: Worcestershire, Spouse: Frances A Cowper, Volume Number: 9d, Page Number: 315
    General Register Office; United Kingdom; Volume: 9d; Page: 315, Ancestry.com. England & Wales, Civil Registration Marriage Index, 1916-2005 
  10. https://www.worcesternews.co.uk/announcements/deaths/deaths/10702391.Eleonore_Cowper/ 

Amalie Meyer Bloch: Where Was Her Husband During the War?

Although I said I was going to write next about Ferdinand, Regina Goldschmidt Meyer’s youngest son, I have just connected with one of his descendants and hope to get more information before I post. So I am skipping ahead to the youngest of Regina Goldschmidt and Aaron Meyer’s children, Amalie Meyer Bloch, and will return to Ferdinand in a later post.

Amalie Meyer was married to Charles Bloch and had one child, their daughter Else, born in 1913. They escaped from Nazi Germany in time and ended up in England and then the US.

By 1939, Else, now spelling her name as Ilse, was living in England, working as a domestic servant.

Ilse Bloch, The National Archives; Kew, London, England; 1939 Register; Reference: RG 101/1599D, Enumeration District: DEBC, Ancestry.com. 1939 England and Wales Registe

But she left England for the US and arrived in New York on July 29, 1940. When she filed her declaration of intention on September 2, 1941, she was living in New York City and working as a factory worker.

Ilse Bloch, declaration of intention, The National Archives at Philadelphia; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; NAI Title: Declarations of Intention for Citizenship, 1/19/1842 – 10/29/1959; NAI Number: 4713410; Record Group Title: Records of District Courts of the United States, 1685-2009; Record Group Number: 21, Description: (Roll 628) Declarations of Intention for Citizenship, 1842-1959 (No 498401-499300), Ancestry.com. New York, State and Federal Naturalization Records, 1794-1943

Her mother Amalie had arrived on August 9, 1941. On the ship manifest she was sailing without Charles and indicated she was heading to her daughter Ilse in New York and leaving behind her husband’s cousin, “Friedrike Meyer,” who, I believe, must have also be the same Friederike who was married to Amalie’s brother, Ferdinand.1

On her declaration of intention, Amalie wrote that her last residence had been Lisbon, Portugal.

Amalie Meyer Bloch, declaration of intent, The National Archives at Philadelphia; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; NAI Title: Declarations of Intention for Citizenship, 1/19/1842 – 10/29/1959; NAI Number: 4713410; Record Group Title: Records of District Courts of the United States, 1685-2009; Record Group Number: 21, Description: (Roll 641) Declarations of Intention for Citizenship, 1842-1959 (No 510101-511000), Ancestry.com. New York, State and Federal Naturalization Records, 1794-1943

But where was her husband Charles? She still listed him as her husband, but she had not listed him on the passenger manifest as the person she was leaving behind. It would appear he was still living, but not in Germany or Portugal. So where was he?

This document, prepared by the occupying forces after the war, indicates that Charles, here identified as Carl, had most recently been living in Paris while Amalie had gone to the US.

Arolsen Archives, Digital Archive; Bad Arolsen, Germany; Lists of Persecutees 2.1.1.1; Series: 2.1.1.1, Reference Code: 02010101 oS, Ancestry.com. Europe, Registration of Foreigners and German Persecutees, 1939-1947

This one identifies him as Charles:

Arolsen Archives, Digital Archive; Bad Arolsen, Germany; Lists of Persecutees 2.1.1.1; Series: 2.1.1.1, Reference Code: 02010101 oS, Ancestry.com. Europe, Registration of Foreigners and German Persecutees, 1939-1947

I was also able to locate a ship manifest dated April 12, 1946, listing Charles Bloch going to his wife Amalie in New York. According to the manifest, he had last resided in Toulouse, France, and this was his first time in the United States. It also indicated this his wife had paid his fare and that he was coming permanently.

Year: 1946; Arrival: New York, New York; Microfilm Serial: T715, 1897-1957; Microfilm Roll: Roll 7093; Line: 7; Page Number: 40, Ancestry.com. New York, Passenger and Crew Lists (including Castle Garden and Ellis Island), 1820-1957

But I still don’t know exactly where Charles spent the years during the war or why he and Amalie ended up in separate countries or where he was for the year after the war ended in Europe until he left on April 12, 1946. Perhaps a displaced persons camp.

The good news, however, is that Amalie, Charles, and Ilse all survived and were living in New York City by the end of April, 1946.

Charles died eleven years later on November 11, 1957; he was 76.2 Amalie survived him less than four years; she died on May 31, 1961, at the age of 69.3 Ilse, who appears to have gone by her middle name Helen in the US, lived to 91, dying on November 28, 2004.4 It appears that she never married or had children.

Thus, there are no descendants of Amalie Goldschmidt Bloch to answer my questions about her husband’s whereabouts during World War II. Maybe there is a relative out there who will knows the answer. Or maybe a reader will have some suggestions for how to learn the answers.

 

 


  1. Amalie Bloch, Year: 1941; Arrival: New York, New York; Microfilm Serial: T715, 1897-1957; Microfilm Roll: Roll 6568; Line: 6; Page Number: 80, Ancestry.com. New York, Passenger and Crew Lists (including Castle Garden and Ellis Island), 1820-1957 
  2. Name: Charles Bloch, Age: 76, Birth Date: abt 1881, Death Date: 11 Nov 1957, Death Place: Manhattan, New York, New York, USA, Certificate Number: 24005, Ancestry.com. New York, New York, Death Index, 1949-1965 
  3. Amalie Bloch, Age: 69, Birth Date: abt 1892, Death Date: 31 May 1961, Death Place: Manhattan, New York, New York, USA, Certificate Number: 12285, Ancestry.com. New York, New York, Death Index, 1949-1965 
  4. Helen I Bloch, Gender: Female, Birth Date: 30 May 1913, Death Date: 28 Nov 2004
    SSN: 100121080, Ancestry.com. U.S., Social Security Applications and Claims Index, 1936-2007 

Regina Goldschmidt’s Children: Did They Escape in Time or Not?

When Hitler came to power in Germany in 1933, Regina Goldschmidt Meyer had already outlived her husband Aaron Meyer, who had died in 1902, and two of her seven children, Sally having died in childhood and Jacob in 1928. Her other five children—Alfred, Max, Siegfried, Ferdinand, and Amalie— were still living as well as a number of grandchildren.

But Regina died in Frankfurt on October 7, 1938, just a month before Kristallnacht. She was 83 years old.

Regina Goldschmidt Meyer, death record, Personenstandsregister Sterberegister; Bestand: 903; Signatur: 11076, Year Range: 1938, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Deaths, 1851-1958

Some of her five surviving children fared better than others during the Holocaust. For some, I ran into brick walls when I tried to learn more about their lives during or after the war. For others, I discovered tragedy. This post will focus on her four oldest children and their families.

The fate of Regina’s oldest child, Alfred Meyer, is somewhat unclear. I found only two documents for him after his birth record. First, I found this card in the Arolsen Archives:

With help from the German Genealogy group, I learned that this card says that Alfred was a widower and that he had no occupation. The final column indicates that Alfred was still living in Frankfurt on April 24, 1939, and then left for France and was there until November 3, 1939.

The second card, also from the Arolsen Archives, came up through a search on Ancestry.com:

Arolsen Archives, Digital Archive; Bad Arolsen, Germany; Lists of Persecutees 2.1.1.1; Series: 2.1.1.1, Reference Code: 02010101 oS, Ancestry.com. Europe, Registration of Foreigners and German Persecutees, 1939-1947

According to the description on Ancestry, this document was prepared after the war by the American forces occupying West Germany as an attempt to document the Jews who had been persecuted by the Nazis. This particular document lists those who had become or were French citizens. Under the last category, “Aufenthaltsdaten,” or dates of stay, it says April 24, 1939, to November 3, 1939. This appears to be consistent with the other card from the Arolsen Archives.

But what happened to Alfred after November 3, 1939? Did he return to Frankfurt and survive? Was he killed? He does not appear in either the Yad Vashem database or the US Holocaust Memorial and Museum database. There are many other post-war records for men named Alfred Meyer, but the name is so common and the records so vague in identification information that I have no idea what happened to my cousin Alfred Meyer. Cibella and Baron say he died in a concentration camp, and I fear that that is probably the case even though I can’t find him at Yad Vashem.

As noted above, Alfred’s brother Jacob Meyer had died in 1928, leaving his wife Elli and their children to survive him. I was able to find records for Elli showing that she had immigrated to England by 1939; she and her son Arthur are listed together on the 1939 England and Wales Register.

Ellie and Arthur Meyer, The National Archives; Kew, London, England; 1939 Register; Reference: RG 101/416H, Enumeration District: APCA, Ancestry.com. 1939 England and Wales Register

Arthur also registered as an enemy alien in 1939; at that time he was working as an apprentice shirt cutter for Harrod’s. Note that his address is 28c Maida Avenue.

Arthur Meyer, The National Archives; Kew, London, England; HO 396 WW2 Internees (Aliens) Index Cards 1939-1947; Reference Number: HO 396/187, Piece Number Description: 187: German Internees Released in UK 1939-1942: Mayer-Morgens, Ancestry.com. UK, WWII Alien Internees, 1939-1945

Also living at 28c Maida Avenue in 1939 when she registered as an enemy alien was Arthur’s sister Hilde Meyer, who was a student and an unemployed domestic worker.

Hilde Meyer, The National Archives; Kew, London, England; HO 396 WW2 Internees (Aliens) Index Cards 1939-1947; Reference Number: HO 396/61, Piece Number Description: 061: Internees at Liberty in UK 1939-1942: Mer-Mid, Ancestry.com. UK, WWII Alien Internees, 1939-1945

On the 1939 England and Wales Register, Hilde was working as a parlor maid and living elsewhere, so she must have found work by the time that was enumerated.1

As for the third child whom Cibella/Baron identified as a child of Jacob and Elli Meyer, Lotte Henriette Meyer, I did not have much luck locating records. Cibella/Baron report that she married Helmut Leopold Wallach in Frankfurt on April 27, 1934, and that they had twin daughters born in 1935, but I could not find a marriage record or birth records for the twins. I did find a 1937 ship manifest for a Lotte Wallach with two daughters born in 1935, heading from England to Argentina2 and a separate 1937 manifest for a Helmut Leopold Wallach heading to Uruguay,3 but nothing more specific to tie Lotte to Jacob and Elli Meyer or to Helmut Wallach.

Elli Loeser Meyer lived the rest of her life in England, dying there on April 18, 1966. The listing for her in the England & Wales, National Probate Calendar names “Arthur Meyers, company director,” as one of the executors.4 I have been unable so far to find any other later records for any of her children. Thus, I do not know when or where they died, whether or not they married or had children, or anything else.

Max Meyer and his family escaped from Nazi Germany to Argentina. It appears that their son Arnold had immigrated there in July, 1936, but had been living in Basel, Switzerland prior to heading to Buenos Aires:

Arnold Meyer, Ancestry.com. Swiss Overseas Emigration, 1910-1953. Original data: Schweizerisches Auswanderungsamt und Auswanderungsbüro. Überseeische Auswanderungen aus der Schweiz, 1910-1953. Schweizerisches Bundesarchiv (National Archives of Switzerland). E 2175 – 2.

According to Cibella/Baron, Arnold’s parents Max and Anna also both immigrated to Buenos Aires and died there, Anna in 1941 and Max in 1952. Unfortunately, I have no records for these events or for Arnold’s death in 1959.

Siegfried Meyer met a tragic end. He immigrated to the Netherlands, but on April 21, 1943, he was deported to the Theresienstadt concentration camp, where he was murdered on November 23, 1943, and cremated.5

Arolsen Arhives, 1 Incarceration Documents / 1.1 Camps and Ghettos / 1.1.42 Theresienstadt Ghetto /1.1.42.2 Card File Theresienstadt /Ghetto Theresienstadt Card File, Reference Code
11422001

Thus, for Regina’s four oldest children, I have mixed results. Jacob’s family ended up in England and possibly Argentina; Max’s family ended up in Argentina. Tragically, Siegfried was murdered by the Nazis, and Alfred probably was also.

The next post will report on Regina’s youngest son, Ferdinand, and his family.


  1.  Hilde Meyer, Gender: Female, Marital status: Single, Birth Date: 21 Nov 1912, Residence Year: 1939, Address: 24, Residence Place: Yiewsley and West Drayton, Middlesex, England, Occupation: Parlourmaid, Schedule Number: 167, Sub Schedule Number: 3, Enumeration District: BZAA, Registration district: 127/1, The National Archives; Kew, London, England; 1939 Register; Reference: RG 101/994A, Ancestry.com. 1939 England and Wales Register 
  2. Lotte Wallach, Gender: Female, Age: 31, Birth Date: abt 1906, Departure Date: 16 Oct 1937, Port of Departure: Southampton, England, Destination Port: Buenos Aires, Argentina, Ship Name: Almanzora, Shipping Line: Royal Mail Lines Limited, Official Number: 136353, Ancestry.com. UK and Ireland, Outward Passenger Lists, 1890-1960 
  3. Helmut Wallach, Gender: Male, Age: 31, Birth Date: abt 1906, Departure Date: 5 Feb 1937, Port of Departure: Southampton, England, Destination Port: Montevideo, Uruguay, Ship Name: Arlanza, Shipping Line: Royal Mail Lines Limited
    Official Number: 132021, Ancestry.com. UK and Ireland, Outward Passenger Lists, 1890-1960 
  4. Elli Meyer, Death Date: 18 Apr 1966, Death Place: London, England, Probate Date: 6 Jun 1966, Probate Registry: London, England, Ancestry.com. England & Wales, National Probate Calendar (Index of Wills and Administrations), 1858-1995 
  5. Siegfried Meyer, entries at Yad Vashem:  https://tinyurl.com/yazazrxa and https://tinyurl.com/y6v946fm 

Regina Goldschmidt Meyer: Another Young Widow

Now I turn to Jacob Goldschmidt and Jettchen Cahn’s second daughter Regina Goldschmidt, who married eight months after her older sister Helene. She married Aaron Meyer in Frankfurt on August 26, 1874. Aaron was born on October 10, 1846, in Linz, Germany, to Abraham Meyer and Amalie Jacob.

Marriage record of Regina Goldschmidt and Aaron Meyer, Hessisches Hauptstaatsarchiv; Wiesbaden, Deutschland, Year Range: 1874, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Marriages, 1849-1930

Regina and Aaron had six sons and one daughter.

Alfred Meyer was born on June 16, 1875, in Frankfurt.

Alfred Meyer, birth record, Hessisches Hauptstaatsarchiv; Wiesbaden, Deutschland; Bestand: 903; Signatur: 903_8865, Year Range: 1875, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Births, 1851-1901

Jacob Meyer was born on September 29, 1876, in Frankfurt.

Jacob Meyer birth record, Hessisches Hauptstaatsarchiv; Wiesbaden, Deutschland; Bestand: 903; Signatur: 903_8895 Description Year Range: 1876 Source Information Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Births, 1851-1901

Max Meyer was born on May 13, 1878, in Frankfurt:

Max Meyer birth record, Hessisches Hauptstaatsarchiv; Wiesbaden, Deutschland; Bestand: 903; Signatur: 903_8917, Year Range: 1878, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Births, 1851-1901

Siegfried Meyer was born on August 16, 1881, in Frankfurt:

Siegfried Meyer birth record, Hessisches Hauptstaatsarchiv; Wiesbaden, Deutschland; Bestand: 903; Signatur: 903_8957, Year Range: 1881, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Births, 1851-1901

A fifth son, Sally Meyer, was born on February 26, 1883, but died just a few days later on March 2, 1883, in Frankfurt.

Sally Meyer birth record, Hessisches Hauptstaatsarchiv; Wiesbaden, Deutschland; Bestand: 903; Laufende Nummer: 145, Year Range: 1883, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Births, 1851-1901

Sally Meyer, death record, Personenstandsregister Sterberegister; Bestand: 903; Signatur: 10361
Year Range: 1883, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Deaths, 1851-1958

Regina and Aaron’s sixth son Ferdinand Meyer was born on April 27, 1886, in Frankfurt.

Ferdinand Meyer birth record, Hessisches Hauptstaatsarchiv; Wiesbaden, Deutschland; Bestand: 903; Signatur: 903_9017, Year Range: 1886, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Births, 1851-1901

Finally, Regina and Aaron had a daughter Amalie Meyer, who was born on January 12, 1892, in Frankfurt:

Amalie Meyer, brith record, Hessisches Hauptstaatsarchiv; Wiesbaden, Deutschland; Bestand: 903; Signatur: 903_9100, Year Range: 1892,  Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Births, 1851-1901

Like her sister Helene and her mother Jettchen, Regina was widowed at a relatively young age. Aaron Meyer died on December 30, 1902. He was only 56 years old, and Regina was 47. Their six surviving children ranged in age from 27 (Alfred) to ten years old (Amalie).

Aaron Meyer, death record, Personenstandsregister Sterberegister; Bestand: 903; Signatur: 10565
Year Range: 1902, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Deaths, 1851-1958

I have not yet found any marriage records for Alfred Meyer or Siegfried Meyer, but Regina’s other children all married.

Jacob Meyer married Elli Loeser on February 26, 1906. She was born June 24, 1884, in Koln, Germany, to Ferdinand Loeser and Helene Doctor.

Marriage record for Jacob Meyer Elli Loeser, Hessisches Hauptstaatsarchiv; Wiesbaden, Deutschland; Signatur: 9690, Year Range: 1906, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Marriages, 1849-1930

According to Roger Cibella and David Baron’s research, Jacob and Elli had three children, Lotte (1907), Hilde (19120, and Arthur (1916).

Sadly, Jacob Meyer died when he was 51 on August 23, 1928. He was survived by his wife Elli and their children.

Jacob Meyer, death record, Personenstandsregister Sterberegister; Bestand: 903; Signatur: 10941
Year Range: 1928, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Deaths, 1851-1958

Max Meyer married Anna Katzenstein on February 28, 1910, in Eschwege, Germany.  She was born in that town on December 19, 1886, to Gustav Katzenstein and Julia Loewenstein Kayser.

Marriage of Max Meyer and Anna Katzenstein, Hessisches Hauptstaatsarchiv; Wiesbaden, Deutschland; Bestand: 923, Year Range: 1910, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Marriages, 1849-1930

According to Cibella/Baron, Max and Anna had one child, and I am looking for a record to establish that connection.

Ferdinand Meyer married Friederike Jaenecke on February 6, 1920, in Frankfurt. She was born to Karl Adelbert Jaenecke and Friederike Elisabethe Weber on July 6, 1891, in Frankfurt. Friederike was Protestant, not Jewish, one of the few “mixed marriages” I’ve encountered in my research of my relatives living in Germany during this time period.

Ferdinand Meyer and Friederike Jaenecke marriage record, Hessisches Hauptstaatsarchiv; Wiesbaden, Deutschland; Bestand: 903, Year Range: 1920, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Marriages, 1849-1930

Ferdinand and Friederike had two children. Eleanora Meyer was born in Frankfurt on August 23, 1919. I do not have a birth record for her, but obtained this date from her parents’ naturalization papers filed years later.1 I noticed, of course, that her birth date was almost six months before Ferdinand and Friederike’s wedding on February 6, 1920. I assume that Ferdinand was nevertheless the biological father. This also may explain the unlikely marriage of a Jew and a Protestant in 1920.

Their second child, Erich Adelbert Meyer, was born on January 30, 1924, in Frankfurt.2

Finally, Regina and Aaron’s youngest child and only daughter, Amallie Meyer, married Charles Bloch in Frankfurt on November 24, 1911. Charles was born on August 14, 1881, in Frankfurt, to Julius Bloch and Clara Herzberg.

Marriage record of Amalie Meyer and Charles Bloch, Hessisches Hauptstaatsarchiv; Wiesbaden, Deutschland; Bestand: 923, Year Range: 1910, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Marriages, 1849-1930

Amalie and Charles had a daughter Ilse (or Else) Helen Bloch born in Frankfurt on May 30, 1913.3

Thus, by 1933, Regina Goldschmidt Meyer had survived her husband Aaron and two of her children, Jacob and Sally. Her other five children and her many grandchildren were still living when Hitler came to power in 1933.

We will pick up with Regina and her family in the next series of posts.

 


  1. Friederike Meyer naturationalization papers, National Archives at Boston; Waltham, Massachusetts; ARC Title: Petitions and Records of Naturalization , 8/1845 – 12/1911; NAI Number: 3000057; Record Group Title: Records of District Courts of the United States, 1685-2009; Record Group Number: RG 21, Ancestry.com. Massachusetts, State and Federal Naturalization Records, 1798-1950 
  2. Erich Meyer naturalization papers, The National Archives at Atlanta, Georgia; Atlanta, Georgia; ARC Title: Petitions for Naturalization, compiled 1880 – 1975; NAI Number: 2111793; Record Group Title: Records of District Courts of the United States; Record Group Number: 21, Ancestry.com. Florida, Naturalization Records, 1847-1995 
  3. Else Helen Bloch naturalization papers, Declaration Date: 2 Sep 1941
    Declaration Place: New York, Court: U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, Declaration Number: 498770, Box Number: 372, The National Archives at Philadelphia; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; NAI Title: Declarations of Intention for Citizenship, 1/19/1842 – 10/29/1959; NAI Number: 4713410; Record Group Title: Records of District Courts of the United States, 1685-2009; Record Group Number: 21,
    Ancestry.com. New York, State and Federal Naturalization Records, 1794-1943 

Retrieving Art Stolen by the Nazis and Helping Victims of Discrimination: Helene Goldschmidt Fuld’s Grandsons

Helene Goldschmidt Fuld’s only son Harry Fuld was my third cousin, twice removed.

Harry died on January 27, 1932, in the Netherlands, according to one source, or in Switzerland, according to others. He was 52 years old. Harry was survived by his wife and by two sons from his two earlier marriages, Harry Fuld, Jr., and Peter Harry Fuld.

By Googling Harry Fuld (sometimes I am amazed by what can be found!), I learned a great deal more about Harry and his sons than I had through ordinary genealogy tools. According to the website Deutsche Biographie,1 Harry Fuld, Sr. was a very successful entrepreneur. His grandfather Jacob Meier Goldschmidt wanted him to enter into the family’s art and antiques business, but Harry wanted to go into his own business. After training in a bank in Frankfurt and working in businesses in England, Belgium and France, he learned about an American business that leased telephone equipment and began his own such business in Germany. He experienced tremendous success, and his company expanded all over Germany as well as much of Europe. Harry also collected modern art and amassed a huge collection. When he died in 1932, he was a very wealthy man.

Harry’s heirs inherited his business and art collection, but when Hitler came to power and Jewish owned businesses were “Aryanized,” the Nazis seized the assets of the business and the art collection. There are numerous articles about the seizure of the art collection and the family’s efforts to reclaim the works after the war (see links below).

One thing that confused me about these articles is that they all referred to Harry’s widow as Lucie Mayer-Fuld, not Elsa Cajzago Tedesco, the name of his wife on the 1926 marriage record. Had Harry divorced his third wife Elsa Cajzago Tedesco Fuld and married a fourth time before he died in 1932?

That sent me down a rabbit hole, of course, looking for Lucie Mayer-Fuld. I couldn’t find a marriage record for a Lucie Mayer and Harry Fuld, nor could I find a birth record for her. The only records I initially found were listings for Lucie Mayer-Fuld in several Frankfurt directories from the late 1930s. But, of course, they did not tell me when or even whether she married Harry Fuld. Here’s one example from 1939.

Amtliches Fernsprechbuch für den Bezirk der Reichspostdirektion Berlin, 1939
Ancestry.com. German Phone Directories, 1915-1981

Then I located several ship manifests for Lucie Mayer-Fuld, but sailing with a man named Acatiu Mayer-Feld. Some of these manifests said he was born in Romania and so was Lucie; others said Hungary. I was really confused at this point. Had all those articles about the recovery of Harry’s art collection been wrong about the name of his widow?

Mayer-Fuld on passenger manifest, Year: 1941; Arrival: New York, New York; Microfilm Serial: T715, 1897-1957; Microfilm Roll: Roll 6521; Line: 1; Page Number: 8, Ancestry.com. New York, Passenger and Crew Lists (including Castle Garden and Ellis Island), 1820-1957

Mayer-Fuld, passenger manifest, The National Archives at Washington, D.C.; Washington, D.C.; Series Title: Passenger and Crew Lists of Vessels and Airplanes Departing from New York, New York, 07/01/1948-12/31/1956; NAI Number: 3335533; Record Group Title: Records of the Immigration and Naturalization Service, 1787-2004; Record Group Number: 85; Series Number: A4169; NARA Roll Number: 205, Ancestry.com. U.S., Departing Passenger and Crew Lists, 1914-1966

The breakthrough came when I found one index of a ship manifest for a ship arriving in Buenos Aires, Argentina on August 27, 1940, that identified Lucie Mayer-Fuld’s birth place as Funfkirchen, and that rang a bell. I went back to check, and sure enough, Elsa Cajzago Tedesco Fuld was born in Funfkirchen. Could she be the same person as Lucie Mayer-Fuld? And if so, where did the Mayer in her surname come from?

Ship LUISA C. arriving to Buenos Aires on Aug 27, 1940, found at https://www.hebrewsurnames.com/arrival_LUISA%20C._1940-08-27

Searching for Acatiu, an unusual enough name, was easier than searching for Lucie, and I found this immigration card from Brazil. His father’s surname was Mayer, so the Mayer in Lucie’s name had come from Acatiu, not from her own birth name.

Acatiu Mayer-Fuld, Digital GS Number: 004914991
Ancestry.com. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Immigration Cards, 1900-1965

I assumed that if Acatiu had gone to Argentina in 1940 and Lucie was on the same ship with him, she also must have had an Brazilian immigration card. But it had not come up during my Ancestry search for Lucie Mayer-Fuld. This time I did a more focused search in that database, and her card appeared. And there was my answer; her parents were A. Cajzago and Alice Cajzago. Lucie Mayer-Fuld was the same person as Elsa Cajzago Tedesco Fuld, the third wife and widow of my cousin Harry Fuld. She had remarried after Harry’s death and escaped from Germany with her new husband Acatiu.

Lucie Mayer-Fuld, Digital GS Number: 004561378
Ancestry.com. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Immigration Cards, 1900-1965

As for Harry’s two sons, according to Wikipedia, Harry, Jr., the son of Flora Sondheimer and Harry Fuld, Sr., escaped to Switzerland in 1937, leaving his father’s art collection behind in his haste to leave Germany. By 1939, Harry, Jr. was in England. On his registration as an “enemy alien” in 1939, Harry stated that he was the manager and a shareholder of Autophone Ltd, which I assume was in some way related to his father’s phone leasing business. Harry, Jr. was sent to an internment camp as an enemy alien from June 21, 1940, until December 22, 1941, according to his enemy alien registration form.

Harry Fuld, Jr., The National Archives; Kew, London, England; HO 396 WW2 Internees (Aliens) Index Cards 1939-1947; Reference Number: HO 396/152, Piece Number Description: 152: Australia Internees 1940-1943: Germans and Austrians Released in Australia, A-J, Ancestry.com. UK, WWII Alien Internees, 1939-1945

After the war Harry, Jr., and his family began efforts to regain his father’s art collection. As the many articles devoted to these efforts reveal, it took many years and a great deal of effort, but eventually the family had some success. Sadly, most of that success came years and years after Harry, Jr., died in London on October 31, 1963;2 he was only fifty years old.

For more on the return of the family’s art collection, see the stories and images at the links listed below. Some of the works were just returned as recently as the fall of 2019. The stories are quite fascinating, the art quite beautiful. I can’t do justice to it here on the blog.

https://www.thejc.com/news/world/stolen-by-nazis-restituted-to-its-rightful-owners-now-sold-at-sotheby-s-for-magen-david-adom-uk-1.486050

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Le_Mur_Rose

https://news.artnet.com/art-world/artworks-confiscated-nazis-restituted-jewish-art-collector-1640692

https://www.art-critique.com/en/2019/09/germany-returns-works-to-heirs-of-jewish-collector-and-businessman/

http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/268431

As for Peter Harry Fuld, Harry, Sr.’s son with his second wife, Ida Felsmann, in the 1930s he was a teenager and living with his mother in Frankfurt. Ida was not Jewish, but because Peter’s father had been Jewish, making Peter a Mischling of the First Degree, Ida was concerned for his safety and sent him to Switzerland in 1937 and then to England in 1939. Peter wanted to study law at Cambridge University, but was interned on the Isle of Man as an enemy alien. He was then sent to Canada in June, 1940, where he again lived in an internment camp. According to the website for the foundation established in his name, he faced painful rejection and discrimination while confined in England and Canada: “Because of his Jewish roots on his father’s side, he was rejected by German and Jewish fugitives and avoided as a German by Canadian fellow students. He hardly found friends.”

After his release in 1941, Peter studied law at the University of Toronto and eventually returned to England after the war and devoted much of his time as a lawyer helping victims of discrimination. Peter married in 1957, but like his half-brother Harry, Jr., he died young. He died from an inoperable brain tumor on March 21, 1962, at the age of 41.

As mentioned above, a foundation was established in Peter’s name to provide support to victims of discrimination and to support education to fight discrimination.  You can learn more about the foundation here. All the information above about Peter came from that website.

Harry, Jr., and Peter died so close to each other in time that the London probate index lists them one after the other. How very sad.

Ancestry.com. England & Wales, National Probate Calendar (Index of Wills and Administrations), 1858-1995. Original data: Principal Probate Registry. Calendar of the Grants of Probate and Letters of Administration made in the Probate Registries of the High Court of Justice in England.

Like their father Harry Fuld, Sr., both Peter and Harry, Jr., left their mark on the world and are still remembered today. They were my fourth cousins, once removed.

 


  1. Lerner, Franz, “Fuld, Harry” in: New German Biography 5 (1961), p. 725 f. [Online version]; URL: https://www.deutsche-biographie.de/pnd136471404.html 
  2.  Registration district: Marylebone, Inferred County: London, Volume: 5d, Page: 357
    General Register Office; United Kingdom; Ancestry.com. England & Wales, Civil Registration Death Index, 1916-2007 

Escaping from Germany to Brazil and Israel: Brick Walls

 

We’ve already seen that Helene Goldschmidt Fuld’s second child, Minna Fuld, who was born in 1875, had a complicated marital history. First, she married Leo Offenstadt in 1894 when she was eighteen, and that marriage ended in divorce in 1904. She and Leo had had one child, Flora, in 1894. Then Minna married Ladislaus Polacovits in 1906, and he died in 1913; Minna had one child with Ladislaus, Lisolette, who was born in 1907.

Finally, Minna married Hermann Heinrich Karl Reuss in 1923, with whom she had no children. Hermann is listed in the 1940 Frankfurt directory1 and died in Frankfurt on September 27, 1947.

Hermann Reuss death record, Personenstandsregister Sterberegister; Bestand: 903; Signatur: 225
Year Range: 1947, Ancestry.com. Hesse, Germany, Deaths, 1851-1958

His death certificate indicates that he was a widower at the time of his death. I have no record for Minna’s death, but unsourced trees indicate that she died in Tel Aviv on May 3, 1944. Had Hermann gone with her to Palestine and returned to Germany after she died? Or had Hermann never left Germany?  I don’t know.

As we saw, Minna’s daughter Flora Offenstadt2 married Hermann Durlacher in 1918 and had two children with him, Siegfried Julius Thomas (known as Thomas) and Ulla Louise Sara. Flora and the two children immigrated to Brazil in 1939, as seen in these immigration cards.

Flora Offenstadt Durlacher, Digital GS Number: 004764836
Ancestry.com. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Immigration Cards, 1900-1965

Siegfried Julius Thomas Durlacher, Digital GS Number: 004916940
Ancestry.com. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Immigration Cards, 1900-1965

Ulla Durlacher, Digital GS Number: 004916940
Ancestry.com. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Immigration Cards, 1900-1965

I could not locate any further records for Hermann Durlacher, but several unsourced trees indicate that he died in Sao Paolo, Brazil, on November 15, 1954, so perhaps he also immigrated to Brazil either before, with, or after his family. I don’t know what happened to Flora or her two children after they immigrated to Brazil in 1939. An unsourced tree on Geni reports that Thomas died in Sao Paulo on December 23, 2007.

Minna’s second daughter, Liselotte Polacovits, married Wilhelm Strauss-Reich on June 5, 1928, and had one child, as discussed here. I was not able to find information about their whereabouts during the 1930s, but by 1942 Liselotte and Wilhelm both had Palestinian passports that they renewed in 1947. I was able to locate a marriage record for their son (who may still be living) in England, so perhaps they also ended up in England or maybe they stayed in Israel.

Liselotte Strauss-Reich, Israel Archives, at https://tinyurl.com/wwdy88x

Thus, there is much to do to learn more about Minna and her descendants. So far, however, I’ve hit dead ends and brick walls. Searching online for answers in Brazil and Israel has led me nowhere. Not knowing how to read either Portuguese or Hebrew (except some basic terms) makes the task even more difficult. If anyone has any thoughts, please let me know.

 

 

 


  1.  Title: Amtliches Frankfurter Adressbuch, Deutsche National Bibliothek; Leipzig, Deutschland; Publisher: August Scherl; Signatur: ZC 811; Laufende Nummer: 1, Ancestry.com. Germany and Surrounding Areas, Address Books, 1815-1974 
  2. Flora’s father, Minna’s first husband Leo Offenstadt, died at Theriesenstadt concentration camp on January 9, 1943. See his entry at Yad Vashem at https://tinyurl.com/tz3gz73.