- The Werner and Trudy Coppel papers include correspondence, identification papers, and printed materials documenting the couple’s status in Berlin after the war as displaced persons and victims of fascism and their immigration to the United States.
Correspondence includes a letter and five telegrams to the Coppels from the American Consulate in Berlin about their immigration and two letters of appreciation for Werner Coppel from the American Joint Distribution Committee and from the captain of the troop transport ship General J.H. McRae.
Identification papers include identity cards issued to the Coppels by the Main Committee of the Victims of Fascism and by the French High Command in Germany, displaced persons index cards issued by the Allied Expeditionary Forces, and a United States Consulate immigration form showing Werner Coppel’s quota and registration number.
Printed materials include a March 8, 1946 copy of Der Kurier containing an article about the Coppels’ wedding, described as the first Jewish wedding in Berlin after the war, and a copy of a 1946 newsletter published in the Schlachtensee displaced persons camp in Berlin and describing the Wittenau displaced persons camp.
- Collection Creator
- Werner Coppel
Werner Coppel (1925- ) was born in Moers, Germany, to Karl and Gudula Coppel. He was sent to the labor camp at Neuendorf in 1941 and then in 1943 to Auschwitz where he worked in a munitions factory. He escaped during a death march to Germany in January 1945 and found his way to an apartment house in Gleiwitz where Jews had being protected during the war by their non-Jewish spouses or parents. There he met his future wife Trudy (1921- ), who was born Traute Silbermann to Jakob and Elizabeth Silbermann in Gleiwitz. Elizabeth Silbermann had been a convert to Judaism from Christianity and was classified as an Aryan by the German government. Werner and Trudy went to Berlin in August 1945 and were married in 1946. He worked at the displaced persons camp in the French sector of Berlin in Wittenau, helping Jewish refugees from eastern Europe reach Schlachtensee in the American sector. The couple had their first child in 1948 and immigrated to America in August 1949, joining Trudy’s family in Cincinnati. Werner Coppel’s parents and brother Günther were deported in December 1941 and killed in Riga.