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Margaret Anne Goldsmith Hanaw collection

Document | Digitized | Accession Number: 1995.A.0106 | RG Number: RG-10.237

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    Margaret Anne Goldsmith Hanaw collection

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    The Margaret Anne Goldsmith Hanaw collection contains correspondence between Lawrence B. Goldsmith Sr., various members of the Schiffman and Marx families living in Germany, and United States government officials. The correspondence relates to the families’ requests for assistance in immigrating to the United States from Nazi Germany in the form of signed affidavits of support and financial assistance. The personal correspondence from the families in Germany provide a sense of growing desperation to leave Germany. Also included are Lawrence B. Goldsmith Sr.’s papers relating his activity with the United Jewish Appeal in Alabama from 1939-1954, as well as documents relating to Oscar Goldsmith’s involvement in the American Jewish Relief Committee, 1917-1922. The collection includes family photographs as well as genealogy and research materials related to Jewish history in Alabama.

    The Margaret Anne Goldsmith Hanaw collection are arranged into five series. Series one, the American Jewish Relief Committee, 1917-1922, includes documents relating to the Oscar Goldsmith’s involvement in the American Jewish Relief Committee and payments to and from Mary Virginia McCormick. A hand written list of donations to the American Jewish Relief Committee is also included in the series.

    Series two, the United Jewish Appeal papers, 1939-1954, includes documents and correspondence created while Lawrence B. Goldsmith Sr. served as chair of the Alabama United Jewish Appeal campaign. The series is organized into correspondence, financial materials, and printed materials. No materials from 1953 is included in this series. The correspondence largely relates to requests for and acknowledgements of financial donations. Some printed promotional materials can be found among the correspondence. The financial materials includes notes, lists of donations and amounts paid, receipts, the Constitution and By-Laws of Madison County Community Chest, bank deposit slips, check books, and account books. The printed materials include promotional materials and donation forms relating to various relief agencies, a newspaper clipping, and the publication “‘With my own eyes’ A Report on a Visit to Israel,” written and signed by Henry Morgenthau, Jr.

    Series three, Correspondence, 1884-1956, is organized into subseries which are arranged by family. The correspondence is written in German and English with occasional transcriptions of the German letters created by family members at the time. These transcriptions appear to be created for Lawrence B. Goldsmith Sr. The correspondence is largely from extended family, cousins of Annie Goldsmith, who were seeking assistance in immigrating to the United States from Nazi Germany. In addition to letters, the correspondence includes telegrams, copies of signed affidavits of support, application instructions for immigration visas, other immigration documents, and shipping receipts for household goods.
    Correspondents with Annie Goldsmith and Lawrence B. Goldsmith Sr. include the families of Ludwig Marx, Otto Marx, Moritz Marx, Meinhard Marx, Ella Lichtenstein, Sophie Levi, Paula Levi, Anny Elbert, Luise Kretsch, and Karl Heinz Marx. The letters from Germany reflect a sense of growing desperation on the part of the families to leave Nazi Germany.

    Series four, Jewish History in Alabama and the Margaret Anne Goldsmith Hanaw family genealogy, contains photocopies of newspaper clippings, magazine articles, and book chapters relating to Jewish history in Alabama. Also included are photocopies of photographs, family trees, and correspondence related to the genealogy of the Margaret Anne Goldsmith Hanaw family.

    Series five, photographs, 1937-1938, includes original portrait photographs of Ludwig Marx and his family, 1937; Heinz Marx, 1938; Otto Marx, Nelly Marx, and Heinz Marx, 1938; and the Levi family including Sofie Levi, Heinz Levi, Lore Levi, Johanna Levi, and August Levi. Some of these photographs were sent to Annie Goldsmith and Lawrence B. Goldsmith Sr. by family members in Germany as an incentive to assist the families wanting to flee Germany. The photographs are alluded to in the correspondence.
    inclusive:  1874-1986
    bulk:  1937-1954
    Collection Creator
    Schiffman family
    Joseph and Caroline Schiffmann of Hoppstaedten, Germany had three children: Gustav Schiffmann, Isaak Schiffmann (1856-1910), and Johanna Schiffmann. At some point the spelling of the Schiffmann last name was changed to Schiffman.

    Isaak Schiffmann (later Isaac Schiffman, 1856-1910) immigrated to Huntsville, Alabama in 1878 where he joined his uncles Daniel Schiffman (1842-1892) and Solomon Schiffman (1835-1894). His siblings, Gustav and Johanna Schiffman, remained in Germany. On March 5, 1884, Isaac Schiffman married Bettie Schiffman (née Herstein, 1860-1932). They had three children, Annie Goldsmith (née Schiffman, 1886-1959), Irma Carolyn Schiffman (1890-1956), and Robert Lee Schiffman (1888-1936).

    Annie Schiffman (later Goldsmith, 1886-1959), the eldest daughter of Isaak Schiffman, married Lawrence B. Goldsmith Sr. (1883-1972) on April 29, 1909 in Alabama. Their son, Lawrence Bernstein Goldsmith Jr. (1909-1995) was born on June 19, 1909. Lawrence Goldsmith Sr. served as the President of the I. Schiffmann & Company, Inc. and chaired the Alabama UJA Campaign, later known as the Huntsville Jewish Charities, every year without interruption from 1939-1954. Annie Goldsmith is listed as both a housewife and the Director of the I. Schiffman & Company, Inc. on the affidavits of support for her family members. Their son, Lawrence Goldsmith Jr., is listed as Secretary of the company. Annie and Lawrence B. Goldsmith Sr., along with a cousin Elsie Schiffman in New York, sponsored the immigration of extended family members from Germany. They were successful in sponsoring the Ludwig Marx family who arrived in New York in March 1939, as well as Annie and Paul Elbert, Luise and Wilhelm Kretsch, and Hans Marx. They also attempted to sponsor the families of Otto Marx, Meinhard Marx, August Levi, and Felix Lichtenstein. On August 26, 1953, Lawrence B. Goldsmith, Jr. married Jewell Goldsmith (née Shelton, 1923-2009). Annie Schiffman died in 1959 and Lawrence B. Goldsmith Sr. died in 1972.

    Robert Lee Schiffman (1888-1936), the only son of Isaak Schiffman, married Elsie Schiffman (1891-1976). They had a daughter Carolyn E. Schiffman (approx. 1922-?). After Robert’s death, Elsie Schiffman signed affidavits of support for several of his cousins and their families who were wanting to Nazi persecution in Germany.

    Gustav’s son, Leo Schiffmann (1892-1985) immigrated to Huntsville, Alabama in 1907 and lived for a while with his cousin, Robert Schiffman. Leo Schiffman married Frances Schiffman (née Brickman, 1898-1978) on September 25, 1920 in Alabama. They had two children, Leo Schiffman Jr. (1921-2013) and Julia A. Schiffman (b. approx. 1923-?). Leo subsequently brought his mother, Lina Schiffman (1862-1948), and his sisters and brothers to the United States and Canada during the 1930s. Leo Schiffman Jr. married Lottie Wheelock Schiffman (née Gilbert, 1922-2004) in Providence, Rhode Island in 1950. They had two children, Robert F. Schiffman and Linda M. Hillis. Leo Schiffman Sr. died in Alabama in 1985.

    In Germany, Johanna Schiffmann married Heinrich Marx. They had several children. Following Johann Schiffmann’s death, Heinrich Marx married Sophie Eppstein and had additional children. Of the following Marx children, it is sometimes unclear if they were the children of Heinrich’s first or second marriage.

    Ludwig Marx (1887-1963) was born in Weinsheim at Bad Kreuznach on July 13, 1887. His wife Elizabeth Marx (Lissi, née Wälder, 1900-1983) was born in Münchweiler on August 18, 1900. Their daughter Inge Johanna Marx was born in Bad Kreuznach on October 22, 1926. Ellen Clara Marx was born in Bad Kreuznach on August 15, 1930. On June 30, 1937, Ludwig Marx wrote to his cousin Anne Goldsmith asking her to sponsor the family’s immigration to the United States. The Goldsmiths were initially reluctant to sponsor the Ludwig Marx family but in 1938 Lawrence Goldsmith agreed to sponsor the Ludwig Marx family so that they could in turn sponsor the rest of their family. The family arrived in New York in March 1939 aboard the RMS Aquitania. They stayed with family in New Rochelle, New York before securing a house of their own in New Rochelle. Ludwig Marx died on May 27, 1963. Elizabeth Marx died in April 1983.

    Otto Joseph Marx (1890-1942) was born in Weinsheim, Germany on May 6, 1890. His wife Nelli Karoline Wertheimer (later Nelly Marx, 1902-?) was born in Frankfurt Am Main, Germany on January 10, 1902. They married on October 21, 1926 in Frankfurt am Main, Germany. Their son, Heinz Marx, was born on November 18, 1927. In March 1937, Otto wrote to his cousins Annie Goldsmith and Elsie Schiffman requesting assistance in immigrating to the United States. Lawrence Goldsmith was at first hesitant to expend support to Otto Marx and his family but on November 1938 an affidavit of support was signed and submitted for the family of three. The family attempted to immigrate to England and South America while awaiting their visas to the United States. However, the family was unable to leave Germany, despite assistance from the Goldsmiths. In late November or early December 1938, Otto Marx was hospitalized after being attacked by Nazi soldiers. Sometime in later 1941 or early 1942 the Marx family was arrested and deported to the Izbica ghetto in Poland. Otto Marx was sent to the Sachsenhausen concentration camp where he perished on February 25, 1942. Heinz Marx perished at the Majdanek concentration camp. Nelly Marx also perished but details of her death are unknown.

    Moritz Marx was born in Weinsheim, Germany on January 20, 1886. He married Suse Marx (Sarah) who was born in Duisburg on February 21, 1883. Their son, Helmut Marx, was born on December 3, 1913. Starting in 1934 Helmut lived in Holland and worked as a farmer. In 1940 Helmut was dating Greet Sanders who was born on November 30, 1920. Moritz requested affidavits of support for himself, Sarah, Helmut, and Greet from his cousin, Anne Goldsmith and her husband. They received United States visa but were unable to afford the cost of immigration. In 1942, Moritz and Suse were deported to Poland and around 1944 they were sent to the Izbica ghetto in Poland. They both are believed to have perished.

    Meinhard Marx (1897-1981) was born in Weinsheim, German on November 8, 1897. He married Elizabeth Gertrude Marx who was born in Bad Kreuznach on October 2, 1904. Their daughter Johanna Marx (1929-2009) was born in Bad Kreuznach on January 6, 1929. In 1937 Meinhard requested affidavits of support for his family to immigrate to the United States. Annie S. Goldsmith signed an affidavit of support for the family on December 13, 1938. In 1939 Meinhard Marx was imprisoned in an unnamed concentration camp but was eventually released. The family survived the war and on June 28, 1946, Lawrence Goldsmith signed an affidavit of support for the family. Another affidavit was submitted on December 11, 1948. Meinhard and Johanna Marx became a naturalized citizen of the United States on February 11, 1957. He died in New York in May 1981.

    Emanuela Lichenstein (née Marx, 1896-?) was born in Weinsheim, Rhineland on April 24, 1896. She married Felix Lichenstein who was born in Mayen, Rhineland on June 7, 1898. Their daughter, Johanna Eleonore Lichtenstein was born in Duren, Rhineland on August 27, 1927. In 1938, Emanuela Lichenstein requested affidavits of support from her cousins in the United States. Elsie S. Schiffman signed and submitted an affidavit of support for the family on October 15, 1938. The affidavit was denied by the United States government and Elsie Schiffman renewed it in 1941 and was again denied.

    Paula Levi (Pauli née Marx, 1889-1948) was born in Germany on February 11, 1889 and married Siegfried Levi. Their daughters, Ruth Johanna Levi was born on July 28, 1920, and Helene Levi (Leni later Jacobs) was born on June 21, 1922. In 1935 the family fled from Germany to Oran, Algeria to escape Nazi persecution. During the war they wrote to their cousins in the United States requesting monetary support and supplies. On July 5, 1944 Helene Levi married an American soldier, Melvin Jacobs (1916-1999) from Utica, New York. Soon after, Helene moved to Utica, New York. Siegfried Levi died in Algeria in 1946. Lawrence Goldsmith signed an affidavit of support for Paula and Ruth Levi on December 5, 1946 and they immigrated to the United States. Paula Levi died on January 25, 1948.

    In 1943, Betty Kahn wrote to Lawrence Goldsmith requesting an affidavit of support for her daughter Annie Elbert (Anny née Kahn) who was living in Palestine. Annie’s husband, Paul Elbert was born in Czechoslovakia on January 10, 1921 and studied chemistry as a student. During the war, Paul fought as a soldier in Palestine and in England. Lawrence Goldsmith agreed to support Annie’s visa application and in 1944, Annie’s visa was approved and she immigrated to the United States. She likely joined her mother, Betty Kahn who was living in Ohio. In 1946, Paul Elbert was discharged from the army. Lawrence B. Goldsmith signed an affidavit of support for Paul Elbert on March 18, 1946. By 1948, Paul Elbert had joined his wife in Cincinnati, Ohio. They had been apart for five years.

    Luise Kretsch (née Marx, 1907-1989) was born in Weinsheim, Germany on February 4, 1907 to Heinrich Marx and his second wife, Sophie Eppstein. She married Wilhelm Kretsch (William, 1902-1981) who was born in Eisenstadt, Austria on February 26, 1902. Their son Haim (Henry) Kretsch was born on May 21, 1934 in Vichy, France. In October 1947, Luise Kretsch wrote to the Goldsmiths requesting their assistance in obtaining affidavits of support. Lawrence Goldsmith signed an affidavit of support for the Kretsch family on December 1, 1947. A second affidavit was signed on March 31, 1953 for Wilhelm and Luise Kretsch. According to their nationalization paperwork, Wilhelm and Luise Kretsch arrived in the United States on the SS Jerusalem on March 24, 1954. Luise Kretsch and Wilhelm Kretsch became a naturalized United States citizens on December 27, 1960. Wilhelm Kretsch died in October 1981. Luise Kretsch died in February 1989.

    Sophie Levi (Sofie née Marx), the daughter of Heinrich and Johanna Marx, was born on April 10, 1893. She married August Levi who was born on June 24, 1884. They married on February 2, 1922. Their children were: Heinz Levi (b. October 3, 1922), Hanna Helene Levi (b. September 2, 1923), and Lore Rahel Levi (b. April 5, 1935). They lived in Saarlautern, Germany where August worked as a farmer. In 1937, Sophie wrote to her cousins in the United States requesting assistance in emigrating from Germany. On November 15, 1938, August Levi was imprisoned at Dachau Concentration Camp and issued the prisoner number, 26849. He was eventually released. On November 25, 1938, Elsie S. Schiffman signed an affidavit of support for the Levi family. Despite the affidavit, the family had difficulties leaving Germany. They were forced from their home in Saarlautern and arrived in Munich on September 13, 1939. Destitute, the family lived with the Eismann family in Munich. Their youngest daughter Lore Levi was sent to live with Dr. Hans Bloch, an attorney who attempted to help the family flee Germany. On August 6, 1941, Johanna Helene Levi was sent to the forced labor camp Flachsröste Lohhof. The exact fate of the Levi family is unclear. They were either deported from Munich to Kovno, Lithuania where they perished on November 25, 1941, or they were deported from Munich to Riga in 1942. They all perished.

    Physical Details

    4 boxes
    System of Arrangement
    The Margaret Anne Goldsmith Hanaw collection is arranged in 5 series.

    Series 1: American Jewish Relief Committee, 1917-1922
    Series 2: United Jewish Appeal papers, 1939-1954
    Subseries: Correspondence, 1939-1954
    Subseries: Financial materials, 1939-1954
    Subseries Printed materials, circa 1939
    Series 3: Correspondence, 1884-1956
    Subseries: Isaak and Betty Schiffman correspondence, 1884-1901
    Subseries: Marx and Goldsmith family correspondence, 1935-1949
    Subseries: Lawrence B. Goldsmith, Sr. correspondence, 1943-1956
    Series 4: Jewish History in Alabama and Margaret Anne Goldsmith Hanaw family genealogy, undated
    Series 5: Photographs, 1937-1938

    Rights & Restrictions

    Conditions on Access
    There are no known restrictions on access to this material.
    Conditions on Use
    The donor requests that, when appropriate, she be informed of use of this collection. 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

    Personal Name
    Adams, Arthur. Asofsky, Isaac L. Barron, Margaret M. Bass, Herman. Battle, George Gordon. Becker, Amy R. Buck, F. H. Cixons, Georg. Creel, Ed. Edison, Irving. Elbert, Anny. Elbert, Paul, 1921- Engel, William P. Frank, Jr., Milton. Gilbert, Tacon. Goldsmith, Annie S., 1886-1959. Goldsmith, Lawrence B., 1883-1972. Goldsmith, Lawrence Bernstein, 1909-1995. Goldsmith, Oscar. Gustav, Isaak, 1856-1910. Gutman, William. Hamlin, Isaac. Hirsch, Harold. Hodges, Dorothy. Hofmann, Kurt. Honaker, Samuel W. Israel, Samuel J. Jacobs, Melvin, 1916-1999. Jordon, Walter. Joseph, Louis. Kahn, Betty. Kahn, Hugo. Kaufman, Ben. Kretsch, Henry, 1934- Kretsch, Luise, 1907-1989. Kretsch, Wilhelm, 1902-1981. Kuhn, Marjorie B. Lamport, Arthur M. Landau, Jacob. Lanier, Milton H. LeBlanc, M. L. Levi, August, 1884- Levi, Hanna Helene, 1923- Levi, Heinz, 1922- Levi, Lore Rahel, 1935- Levi, Paula, 1889-1948. Levi, Ruth Johanna, 1920- Levi, Sophie, 1893- Lichtenstein, Ella. Lichtenstein, Emanuela, 1896-? Lichtenstein, Felix, 1898-? Lichtenstein, Johanna Eleonore, 1927-? Loeb, Jr., Carl M. Marx, Elisabeth, 1900-1983. Marx, Elizabeth Gertrude, 1904- Marx, Ellen Clara, 1930-? Marx, Emilie. Marx, Gertrude. Marx, Heinrich. Marx, Heinz, 1927- Marx, Inge Johanna, 1926-? Marx, Johanna, 1929- Marx, Johanna, 1929-2009. Marx, Karl Heinz. Marx, Ludwig, 1887-1963. Marx, Meinhard, 1897-1981. Marx, Moritz, 1886-? Marx, Nelly, 1902-? Marx, Otto Joseph, 1890-1942. Marx, Sarah, 1883-? McCormick, Mary Virginia. Morgenthau, Jr. Henry, 1891-1967. Pounders, Harold T. Pratt, A. Miles. Price, Walter J. Razovsky, Cecilia. Rhett, Harry M. Rosenbloom, Charles J. Rosenwald, William. Schiffman, Betty, 1860-1932. Schiffman, Elsie, 1891-1976. Schiffman, Gustav. Schiffman, Isaac, 1856-1910. Schiffman, Johanna. Schiffman, Joseph. Schiffman, Karoline. Schiffman, Robert Lee, 1888-1936. Silver, Abba Hillel. Sparkman, John, 1899-1985. Stanley, Wells M. Todd, Ashford. Tomlinson, Rachel. Wertheimer, Selma. Wise, Jonah B.

    Administrative Notes

    Margaret Anne Goldsmith Hanaw donated her collection to the Project Judaica Foundation with the stipulation that the collection be donated to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum when the Museum was completed. The Project Judaica Foundation donated the collection to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in 1993.
    Funding Note
    The cataloging of this collection has been supported by a grant from the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany.
    Record last modified:
    2023-08-24 13:48:13
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