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Lucien Dreyfus papers

Document | Digitized | Accession Number: 1994.A.0112 | RG Number: RG-10.144

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    Lucien Dreyfus papers

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    The Lucien Dreyfus papers primarily consist of five parts of a seven-part diary written by Lucien Dreyfus from 1940 to 1943. An intelligent and discerning man, Lucien used his diary to document his intellectual and social life as a refugee in the south of France, his observations on the rise of antisemitic laws and violence, his cardiac condition, his daughter’s family and their emigration to the United States, and his efforts to retrieve his confiscated property. The diary includes information about Lucien’s students, his opinions about the limited utility of assimilation in fighting antisemitism, and rumors circulating about the terrible conditions in concentration camps in France and murder in the killing centers in Poland. The last entry dates just one month before Lucien’s arrest and deportation to Auschwitz. Cahier C, page 17, contains an entry from July 4, 1942 concerning Dreyfus' knowledge of 700,000 Jews killed in Poland. A September 1943 entry describes letters received from persons in the Drancy concentration camp.

    The diary notebooks are labeled A through G, but the covers for volumes E and F have not been recovered. Several of the volumes begin part of the way through composition books Lucien had used in the 1920s and 1930s to enumerate lists of books and copy passages from them, so his diary does not span the entire length of every composition book.

    The collection also includes a 1903 composition titled "Heine und das Judentum"; a lesson book dated July 1943; and a file containing general information about Dreyfus and his deportation to Auschwitz.
    inclusive:  1903-1944
    Credit Line
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum collection, gift of Monique Allen
    Collection Creator
    Lucien Dreyfus
    Lucien Dreyfus (1882-1943) was born in Westhouse, France (at the time, Westhausen, Germany) to Jonas and Rose (Levy) Dreyfus. His education included rabbinical training in Colmar, Bouxwiller, and Berlin, and he received degrees in history and languages. He pursued a career in education, first as a professor at the Saint-Jean and later Kléber high schools in Strasbourg. He and his wife Marthe (1883-1943, born in Benfeld, France) had one daughter, Mariette (1914-1999). Mariette married Jacques Schumacher (1907-1962), son of the high rabbi of Nice, and had one daughter, Monique, in 1936. Lucien wrote numerous articles in major newspapers, Zionist reviews, and Jewish community publications, and he denounced the rise of Nazism and the influence of fascism in Alsace. Following the evacuation of Strasbourg in 1939, he was granted teaching positions in Poitiers and then Nice, but he was fired following the Jewish statutes of October 1940. He began working at the ORT school in Nice, his son-in-law worked for the Comité d’assistance aux refugiés (CAR), and his daughter worked for the Unitarian Service Committee in Marseilles. His daughter’s family immigrated to the United States from Casablanca aboard the Serpa Pinto in June 1942. They accompanied a Quaker-organized transport of refugee children and settled in Iowa. Lucien and his wife moved to Clans in the French Alps in summer 1943. They were arrested on October 25, 1943, transferred to Gestapo headquarters in Nice for one night and then to Drancy. They were deported on November 20, 1943 to Auschwitz, where they were murdered.

    Physical Details

    9 folders
    3 book enclosure
    System of Arrangement
    The Lucien Dreyfus papers are arranged as a single series.

    Rights & Restrictions

    Conditions on Access
    There are no known restrictions on access to this material.
    Conditions on Use
    Material(s) in this collection may be protected by copyright and/or related rights. You do not require further permission from the Museum to use this material. The user is solely responsible for making a determination as to if and how the material may be used.

    Keywords & Subjects

    Corporate Name
    Drancy (Internament camp)

    Administrative Notes

    Jon and Monique Allen donated the Lucien Dreyfus papers to the Unites States Holocaust Memorial Museum in 1994. Monique Allen is Lucien Dreyfus' granddaughter.
    Funding Note
    The accessibility of this collection was made possible by the generous donors to our crowdfunded Save Their Stories campaign.
    Special Collection
    Save Their Stories
    Record last modified:
    2024-04-11 13:19:05
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