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Joan Inge Maas collection

Document | Digitized | Accession Number: 2000.552.1

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    Contains a Haggadah (Hagadah), nine pages, hand-written text in Hebrew (reproduced on page?) with drawing and explanation of seder plate. Extra page with typed text on both sides (torn in half). Cover page with hand-written text, "Maas Inge" on one side and inscription on verso dated Pessach 1941, Camp de Gurs (torn in half). Haggadah, multi-paged, hand-written text in Hebrew with drawing and explanation of seder plate. Incluced with Haggadah is singular song sheet stating verso, "Editee du Rabbinat du Rabbin Leo Ansbacher, Gurs..Nissan 5701" (April 1941). Separate page: given to Inge Maas (donor) and inscribed on cover "Meinem Liebling Inge Maas zur Erinnerung an Camp de Gurs Pesach 1941 von Ihrem Max Zeilberger."
    creation:  1941
    Credit Line
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Joan Maas
    Collection Creator
    Joan I. Maas
    Inge (later "Joan") Maas, the youngest daughter of Ferdinand Maas and Stephanie Westheimer, was born on December 19, 1932. Her family was from Mannheim and her older sister Lotte was born on March 31, 1923.

    Inge's grandmother, Klara Westheimer, was a passenger on the "St. Louis" and disembarked in Holland. Klara then immigrated to Chicago in 1939. The family had U.S. visas provided by relatives in St. Louis, but the family never used them. Ferdinand Maas was taken by Nazis in 1939 and killed at Sachsenhausen in May 1940. In October 1940, Stephanie Westheimer and her two daughters, Inge and Lotte, were taken from Baden as part of the mass deportation to Gurs internment camp in France. While at the internment camp, eight-year-old Inge created a haggadah.

    A relative in St. Louis used an influential connection with President Franklin Roosevelt to procure the release of Stephanie and her daughters. They went to Marseille for a few months, and lived on a farm. From there, they traveled to Lisbon and then arrived in the New York on December 8, 1941. From New York, they joined Klara and an uncle in Chicago. While her mother and sister worked, Joan (Inge) stayed with her grandmother Klara. Joan's mother passed away when she was 15 and Joan lived with her grandmother until she was married at age 18. Klara died circa 1957.

    Physical Details

    1 folder

    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

    Geographic Name
    Gurs (Concentration camp)

    Administrative Notes

    Donated by Joan Inge Maas to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in 2000.
    Record last modified:
    2023-08-10 10:44:19
    This page:

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