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Emil Cohen * 1873
Dillstraße 8 (Eimsbüttel, Rotherbaum)
further stumbling stones in Dillstraße 8:
Emil Cohen, born on 15 Nov. 1873 in Hamburg, deported on 20 July 1942 to Theresienstadt, deported further on 21 Sept. 1942 to Treblinka and murdered there
Caroline Cohen, née Cohn, born on 15 Jan. 1865 in Lübeck, deported on 20 July 1942 to Theresienstadt, died there
Emil Cohen was born on 15 Nov. 1873 in Hamburg, the second of three children of Abraham and Fanny Cohen. They owned a tailor’s shop at Karolinenstrasse 21 in the St. Pauli quarter. The Cohen family was Jewish Orthodox and quite wealthy. Emil’s parents were born in Hamburg, Abraham in July 1825 and Fanny (née Streim) in June 1840; they were buried in the Ohlsdorf Jewish Cemetery. Abraham Cohen lived until 4 Nov. 1899 and Fanny, who only reached the age of 47, died on 14 Jan. 1887.
Emil was only 14 years young at that time. After the death of his mother, his father moved to Fettstrasse 22 in Eimsbüttel, where he continued to work as a tailor. Fanny Cohen’s parents, Emil’s grandparents, Ephraim Streim, a tailor, and Rieke (née Cohn), had another son, Salomon Streim, who followed his father professionally. He and his wife Johanna (née Sachs) had two sons, Siegfried and Ernst, Emil’s cousins.
Emil’s older brother Henry Cohen, born on 12 June 1869, married Pauline Rosa Reich on 10 Jan. 1899, born on 18 Mar. 1866, and in the same year, their daughter Frieda Cohen was born on Christmas Day. Frieda’s sister Mathilde was born five years later, on 24 Oct. 1904. The youngest of the Cohen brothers, Caesar, died barely a month after his mother on 4 Feb. 1887. He was only four years old, born on 13 June 1882. Like his parents, he was buried in the Ohlsdorf Jewish Cemetery.
Emil also married. His wife was Caroline (née Cohn) who was born as the first of four siblings on 15 Jan. 1865 in Lübeck. Her parents, Suszmann Selig and Nanny Cohn (née Cohen) ran a grocery store on Beckergrube in Lübeck. After Caroline, they also had three sons: Iseie, born on 18 June 1869; Simon Suszmann on 11 Aug. 1874; and Adolph on 18 May 1872. Like his sister Caroline, who was four years older, Iseie later moved to Hamburg, and he opened a swimming pool at Hochstrasse 50 in Altona.
Emil, who became a half-orphan early on, married Caroline, a merchant’s daughter who was twelve years his senior. In 1906, the couple opened a dairy shop at Kurzestrasse 12; in 1908, they relocated their residence and business to Heinrich-Barth-Strasse 21 and in 1912 from there to Dillstrasse 8 in the Grindel quarter, where they remained until 1942. Emil’s brother Henry had also run a dairy shop at Dillstrasse 20 before opening a rental company for party supplies in 1914. There hotels, restaurants and also private customers could borrow fine tables, chairs, services, cutlery, crystal glasses, candlesticks, coat racks and much more for big celebrations and special occasions. The business was very lucrative due to a large customer base and the family could afford a "tasteful” five-room apartment at Werderstrasse 6. There was also a live-in maid to help out. The two brothers with their families always resided within walking distance, mostly in the same street.
The Cohens’ dairy shop, like many other businesses, was liquidated by the Nazis in 1938 and 1939. From 1940 onward, Emil and Caroline Cohen had to adopt "Israel” and "Sara” as their second first names based on the "Second Ordinance regarding the Implementation of the Legislation on the Alteration of Family and Personal Names (2. Verordnung zur Durchführung des Gesetzes über die Änderung von Familien- und Vornamen) dated 17 Aug. 1938. In 1942, the Cohens had to move one street further into a "Jews’ house” ("Judenhaus”) at Rutschbahn 25a. This measure by the Nazis served to ghettoize the Jewish population.
Henry and Pauline Cohen’s business was not Aryanized, but starting in 1933, customers stayed away and the two initially had to rent a room from their nephew Fred Graydon at Beneckstrasse 22 and then sell off their entire household and shop inventory at giveaway prices. Because Fred himself planned to flee, they emigrated to the Netherlands on 27 Jan. 1939.
On 20 July 1942, Emil and Caroline Cohen were deported together with Caroline’s younger brother Iseie on Transport VI/2 to Theresienstadt. Caroline probably died on her way to Theresienstadt, as she was 77 years old at the time of deportation. Two months later, on 21 Sept. 1942, Emil and Iseie were both deported on Transport Bp to Treblinka, where they were murdered. Emil was 69 years old at the time of deportation and Iseie 73.
What happened to the other family members?
Henry and Pauline Cohen were arrested in Amsterdam on 6 Apr. 1943 and transferred to the Westerbork collection camp. From there, they were deported to the Sobibor extermination camp on 27 April of the same year. They died there on 30 Apr. 1943 at the ages of 73 and 77.
The cousin of the Cohen brothers, Siegfried, his wife Johanna, and their three children perished in Auschwitz.
Mathilde Moses (née Cohen), Emil and Caroline Cohen’s niece, her husband Salo Moses, and their two children Alice, born on 12 Apr. 1925, and Lisa Edith, born on 25 Sept. 1929, emigrated to the Netherlands like Mathilde’s parents in 1937. They moved from Grindelallee 129 to Roerstraat 105 in Amsterdam. Before their grandparents Henry and Pauline moved to Biesboschstraat, they lived there together. Mathilde, her husband Salo, and their two daughters were detained in the Westerbork collection camp in 1942 and deported from there to Auschwitz. None of them survived.
Frieda Cohen, Emil and Caroline Cohen’s niece, is the only family member who survived the Holocaust. She first moved from Hamburg to Hohenzollerndamm 35 in Berlin. Frieda Cohen worked as an actor, writer, and radio announcer. Having married, she was already widowed by 1930, when she resided at Stolzenfeldstrasse 6. As Frieda Rothgiesser, she lived in London where she met the German playwright Joachim Huth, born on 24 May 1905. The two emigrated together to the USA in 1937. They got married in New Rochelle in 1944. Frieda called herself Frances and Joachim went by John. Frances and John returned to Europe and first moved to Paris, living at Champs Elyseé 37 in 1958, and then to Switzerland in 1960, where they resided in Ascona on Lake Garda. John Huth died in Bern in Nov. 1984; his wife Frances died only two months later in Jan. 1985 at the age of 83, also in Bern.
Translator: Erwin Fink
Kindly supported by the Hermann Reemtsma Stiftung, Hamburg.
Stand: June 2020
© Charlotte Lüder
Quellen: Deportationslisten Theresienstadt 20.7.1942, http://www.statistik-des-holocaust.de/list_ger_nwd_420719.html (zuletzt besucht am 30.1.2018); Deportationsliste Treblinka 21.9.1942, https://www.holocaust.cz/de/transport/24-bp-theresienstadt-treblinka/ (zuletzt besucht am 30.1.2018); StAHH332-5 Standesämter, Personenstandsregister, Sterberegister, 1876-1950, Signatur: 332-5_13272: Geburtsurkunde Frieda Cohen; Germany, BirthsandBaptisms, 1558–1898. Salt Lake City, Utah: FamilySearch, 2013, Filmnummern: 492232, 492234; Hamburger Adressbücher1902–1943; Adressbuch Berlin 1930; StAHH332-5 Standesämter, Personenstandsregister, Sterberegister, 1876–1950, Signatur:332-5_2794: Heiratsurkunde Salomon Streim; StAHH332-5 Standesämter, Personenstandsregister, Sterberegister, 1876–1950, Signatur: 332-5_8598: Heiratsurkunde Henry Cohen und Pauline Rosa Reich; Namensänderungsgesetz, Reichsministerium des Innern – Reichsgesetzblatt I 1938; Passagierliste 11.9.1937 Liverpool-New York: Board of Trade: Commercial and Statistical Department and successors: Outwards Passenger Lists. BT27. Records of the Commercial, Companies, Labour, Railways and Statistics Departments. Records of the Board of Trade and of successor and related bodies. The National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, England, offizielle Nummer:145925; Social Security Administration. Social Security Death Index, Master File. Social Security Administration, Nummer: 070-20-8712; Ausstellender Bundesstaat: New York; Veröffentlichungsdatum: Before1951; Social Security Administration. Social Security Death Index, Master File. Social Security Administration, Nummer: 557-48-8915; Ausstellender Bundesstaat: California; Veröffentlichungsdatum:1953; StAHH332-5 Standesämter, Personenstandsregister, Sterberegister, 1876-1950, Signatur: 332-5_222: Sterbeurkunde Caesar Cohen; StAHH332-5 Standesämter, Personenstandsregister, Sterberegister, 1876-1950, Signatur332-5_222: Sterbeurkunde Fanny Cohen; StAHH351-11 Amt für Wiedergutmachung 1890-2014, Signatur: 351-11_22559: Wiedergutmachungsakte Frances Huth.