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Oral history interview with Liesl Loeb

Oral History | Accession Number: 1997.A.0441.65 | RG Number: RG-50.462.0065

Liesl Joseph Loeb, born on June 17, 1928 in Rheydt, Rhineland, Germany, describes being a passenger on the St. Louis along with her father, Josef Joseph, an attorney, and her mother, Lilly Salmon Joseph; sailing on May 13, 1939 from Hamburg toward Havana, Cuba with 937 Jewish refugees on board; her family background and life leading up to Kristallnacht, during which she hid in her own home while Nazis were vandalizing it; the months leading up to embarkation and conditions which had to be met before leaving Germany and immigrating to Cuba; her family’s plan to be in Cuba until their quota number was called for the United States; the trip and its complications from a child’s perspective; her father’s sense of duty as the chairman of the passenger committee and the commitment and devotion of all its members; the desperate situation of the hapless passengers to whom no country offered a haven; spending 40 days at sea and the rescue efforts of the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC) and the countries that offered refuge to the passengers; her family landing in England and their life as World War II began; the destiny of most of the passengers; attending school as an “evacuee” and the internment of her father on the Isle of Man as an enemy alien; arriving in New York, NY on September 10, 1940; and her graduation from high school and her immediate marriage after.

Some video files begin with 10-60 seconds of color bars.
Liesl J. Loeb
interview:  1998 November 17
3 sound cassettes (60 min.).
Credit Line
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of the Gratz College Holocaust Oral History Archive
Record last modified: 2022-07-28 20:10:41
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