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Josephine Boock (née Jürgensen) * 1857

Tarpenbekstraße 107 (Hamburg-Nord, Eppendorf)

JG. 1857
´VERLEGT‘ 2.11.1943
ERMORDET 8.11.1943

further stumbling stones in Tarpenbekstraße 107:
Günther Blobel, Klaus Peter Wörbach

Josephine Boock, née Jürgensen, born 13.8.1857 in Borby in the district of Eckernförde, various stays in institutions and clinics, died in the sanatorium and nursing home Meseritz-Obrawalde on 8.11.1943

Tarpenbekstraße 107 (entrance to Anscharhöhe Foundation), Eppendorf

Josephine Boock was 84 years old when she was admitted to the Psychiatric and Mental Clinic of the Hansische University in Hamburg-Eilbek (previously the State Hospital Friedrichsberg) on 28 Aug. 1941, coming from the Diaconal Institution Anscharhöhe on Tarpenbekstraße in Hamburg-Eppendorf. We do not know how long she had lived at Anscharhöhe and how she had fared there. It is only since the time of her admission in Eilbek that we can trace her remaining two years of life.

Josephine Boock was born Josephine Jürgensen on 13 Aug. 1857 in Borby in the district of Eckernförde. Through her marriage she had received the surname Boock. Her husband must have died before her, because she was described as a widow when she was admitted to the psychiatric hospital. We do not know any further details about her childhood, youth and adult life.

When she was admitted to the psychiatric clinic in Eilbek, she was diagnosed with "dementia senilis" (senile dementia). Apparently there was no prospect of improvement and after two weeks Josephine Boock was transferred to the Sanatorium and Nursing home Hamburg-Langenhorn on a collective transport on 12 Sept. 1941. From there, she was transferred to the Sanatorium and Nursing home Lüneburg on 1 Oct., where she was perceived as friendly and content. As a result of her hearing loss, which was first mentioned in Lüneburg, she was very disabled. She is said to have only understood what was "shouted in her ear". She was also blind in one eye.

According to the medical records, Josephine Boock was "hardly oriented about the present". Nevertheless, during the admission interview in Lüneburg, she was able to express her wish to be released immediately.

As in the two institutions before, Josephine Boock was apparently only "kept" in Lüneburg.

In March 1942, the Lüneburg institution sent the "Meldebogen I" to the Reich Ministry of the Interior. During the first euthanasia phase from 1939 to 1941, important data on the inmates of the asylum were sent to the "euthanasia” headquarters in Berlin, Tiergartenstraße 4, on this registration form. Based on the information in these individual registration forms, it was decided there whether people with physical disabilities or mental or psychological illnesses were to be killed in one of the six gas murder institutions. No details from the registration form are recorded in Josephine Boock's medical file, not even whether it had any influence on her further fate.

Like the psychiatric clinic in Eilbek and the Sanatorium and Nursing home Langenhorn before it, the institution in Lüneburg got rid of the elderly woman in need of care after a short time and transferred her back to Langenhorn on 3 Sept. 1943.

Two months later, on 2 Nov. 1943, Josephine Boock was taken in a transport of 50 women to the State Sanatorium Meseritz-Obrawalde in the then province of Brandenburg (today Poland, Międzyrzecz).

This institution had become part of the "decentralised euthanasia" in 1942 following the first "euthanasia” phase. Immediately after the patients' arrival, the medical staff decided on the basis of their physical condition whether someone was to be designated for killing immediately or had to work first, e.g. in the gardening or sewing workshop. Those who were no longer fit for work were given medication that led to death.

On arrival on 3 Nov. 1943, Josephine Boock's medical record tersely noted, "Comes with collective transport from Langenhorn. Very frail."

She died on 8 Nov., allegedly of old age. It may be assumed as very likely that she did not die of natural causes.

Since we do not know of her earlier, self-chosen places of residence, the Stolperstein in memory of Josephine Boock was laid in front of the Diaconal Institution Anscharhöhe.

Translation: Steve Robinson

Stand: September 2023
© Ingo Wille

Quellen: StaH 352-8/7 Staatskrankenanstalt Langenhorn Abl. 1995/1 Nr. 28979 (Josephine Boock). Michael Wunder, Die Transporte in die Heil- und Pflegeanstalt Meseritz-Obrawalde, in: Peter von Rönn u.a., Wege in den Tod, Hamburgs Anstalt Langenhorn und die Euthanasie in der Zeit des Nationalsozialismus, Hamburg 1993, S. 377 ff., 492f.

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