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Oral history interview with Leni Hoffman

Oral History | Accession Number: 2012.8 | RG Number: RG-50.030.0653

Leni Hoffman (née Eckmann), born August 25, 1930 in Bamberg, Germany, discusses her childhood in Hofheim, Germany; antisemitism in her town before Kristallnacht; her parents’ attempt to emigrate; being on one of the last Kindertransports to a home near Brussels, Belgium in July 1939; her transfer to a non-Jewish orphanage, Foyer des Orphelins, in Middelkerke, Belgium with ten other girls; being transferred to the orphanage’s campus in Brussels after the start of bombing of the Belgian coastline on May 10, 1940; spending her days pasting ration stamps when she and the other Jewish children could no longer attend public school in 1942; how those in charge of the orphanage protected her and the other Jewish girls living there; seeing Nazi officers on the street; restrictions affecting the Jewish girls in the orphanage; wearing a Star of David badge for a short time; her liberation by the British on September 4, 1944; hearing news about the war on the radio; immigrating to the United States to live with her aunt and cousins in New York City in 1946; attending high school there until she had to get a job; attending night school, where she met other Jewish refugees; meeting and marrying her husband; staying in contact with and later visiting people from the orphanage in Belgium; and visiting Germany where she spoke at an exhibit about the history of Jewish life in her hometown.

Some video files begin with 10-60 seconds of color bars.
Leni Hoffman
Noemi J. Szekely-Popescu
interview:  2012 January 05
Oral histories.
1 digital file : WAV.
Record last modified: 2021-02-16 15:51:46
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