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Studio portrait of a German-Jewish family prior to the emigration of the wife and children.

Photograph | Digitized | Photograph Number: 17612

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    Studio portrait of a German-Jewish family prior to the emigration of the wife and children.
    Studio portrait of a German-Jewish family prior to the emigration of the wife and children.

Pictured from left to right are Paul, Rosa, Louis and Henni Breslauer.

    Overview

    Caption
    Studio portrait of a German-Jewish family prior to the emigration of the wife and children.

    Pictured from left to right are Paul, Rosa, Louis and Henni Breslauer.
    Date
    1939 September 11 - 1939 December 05
    Locale
    Duesseldorf, [Prussian Rhineland; North Rhine-Westphalia] Germany
    Photo Credit
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, courtesy of Henni Padawer

    Rights & Restrictions

    Photo Source
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
    Copyright: United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
    Provenance: Henni Padawer

    Keywords & Subjects

    Administrative Notes

    Biography
    Henni Breslauer (later Padawer) is the daughter of Louis Breslauer and Rosa (nee Herz) Breslauer. She was born in Duesseldorf on January 26, 1928. Her brother Paul was born two years earlier. Rosa Herz was born in Solothurn Switzerland where her father served as a cantor and kosher butcher. Louis Breslauer was born in Jarocin Poland near Posen. As a young man he worked as a horse trader, but he later became an insurance agent. Though her family was religiously observant, Henni attended Catholic elementary school since it was one of the only two elementary schools available; she was given free time during the religious instruction. However, after the Nazi regime prohibited Jewish children from attending non-Jewish schools, Henni went to a newly created Jewish school housed in the conservative synagogue. She also participated in the Maccabi sports club. In September 1938 Henni's aunt and uncle immigrated to the United States and prepared an affidavit for Henni's family. The Breslauers decided to learn new trades to facilitate their immigration status. Louis trained as a masseur and learned how to make chocolate candies. Though still children, Henni and Paul both learned how to make jewelry from wood and copper. On Kristallnacht night, November 9 1938, SA men barged into the Breslauer's house, hit Louis with a night stick and broke his arm. Soon afterwards the family went to the American consulate in Stuttgart to apply for visas. They learned that since Louis and Rosa had been born in separate countries, they fell under under separate quota restrictions. Swiss nationals enjoyed a relatively short wait, whereas immigrating from either Germany or Poland was much more difficult and time-consuming. On September 11, 1939 the American consulate granted Rosa and the two children permission to immigrate. A couple of months later, they left Germany and briefly stayed in The Netherlands with an aunt who had married a Dutch convert to Judaism. (He later was responsible for saving many Jews.) From there on December 5, 1939 they sailed to New York on board the Staatendam. However Henni's father had no choice but to remain in Duesseldorf. Shortly thereafter he was conscripted for slave labor to do road construction though he was already in his 60s. Louis Breslauer finally received permission to immigrate in March 1941, but only after Rosa had raised a $2000 guarantee that her husband would not become a ward of the state. She had earned what money she could by selling stockings and pastries door-to-door. Henni's brother Paul helped out by selling newspapers and shining shoes. After Louis joined his family, they moved to a chicken farm in Vineland, New Jersey. In 1949 Henni married another German-Jewish émigré. Sadly though, her father died shortly before the wedding.
    Record last modified:
    2006-11-07 00:00:00
    This page:
    https:​/​/collections.ushmm.org​/search​/catalog​/pa1161428

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