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Selma Breslauer (née Kahn) * 1910

Parkallee 4 (Eimsbüttel, Harvestehude)

JG. 1910

further stumbling stones in Parkallee 4:
Hermann Breslauer, Hermann Cerini

Hermann Breslauer, born on 22.4.1900 in Kiel, deported on 8.11.1941 to Minsk and murdered there
Selma Breslauer, nee Kahn, born on 1.10.1910 in Bamberg, deported on 8.11.1941 to Minsk and murdered there

Parkallee 4

Hermann Bernhard Breslauer (called Harry) was born on April 22, 1900 in Kiel as the son of Fritz (born 1871) and Elsa Breslauer, née Grünfeld/Grünfeldt (born 1875) into a Jewish family (for biographies, see He had one sister: Käthe (born Nov 29, 1902).

Hermann Breslauer lived with his parents and sister in Kiel until 1907 and since 1915 in Rostocker Straße 44 in Hamburg-St. Georg. We know nothing about the place of residence of Hermann Breslauer and his family in the period from 1908 to 1914. His father worked as a merchant in the textile industry as well as an independent representative of textile companies. His mother was not employed.

We know nothing about Hermann Breslauer's childhood and adolescence, his schooling and professional career.
Friends who had known the Fritz Breslauer family since 1927 reported in the course of the restitution proceedings that the Fritz Breslauer family led a middle-class life in Hamburg, lived very frugally, built up reserves for old age, and provided both children with a good education at higher schools. They recalled a 4-5 room apartment furnished in a bourgeois manner with a few pieces of antique furniture, and the rich table and other ornamental silverware stored in cabinets with glass windows. The friends stated that the antique furniture seemed extraordinarily valuable to them and that the antique silver had been brought into the marriage by Elsa Breslauer.

Hermann Breslauer had registered his business "Kaufmann Textilien Großhandel" at 44 Rostocker Straße on March 2, 1922. He was described by family friends as a man of handsome good looks, pleasing disposition, and other personal qualities that apparently served him well in his business life. Hermann worked both as a self-employed merchant and as a salaried employee. His average income – as calculated after the war - was 2.028 RM per year.
From 1939 Hermann Breslauer supported his now destitute parents financially.

Hermann Breslauer married Selma Kahn (born Oct 1, 1910 in Bamberg) on Febr 4, 1941. Her Jewish parents were Samuel Kahn (born 1872) and Flora Kahn (born 1878), née Himmelreich, who ran a trade in chemical-technical products in Bamberg. Selma had an older sister: Else (born Jan. 4, 1905). In 1937 Selma Kahn had moved with her sister Else from Bamberg to Hamburg.

Selma Breslauer worked as a housekeeper in Hamburg until 1941. She lived together with her sister Else as subtenants at Grindelweg 74 and Parkallee 8.

After their marriage in 1941, the couple Selma and Hermann Breslauer lived in Parkallee 4 with Cerini (biography see as subtenants. The couple remained childless.

Hermann and Selma Breslauer were deported to Minsk on November 8, 1941 and murdered there on an unspecified date.

Hermann Breslauer's parents Fritz and Elsa Breslauer had to move to the "Judenhaus" at Bundesstraße 35 in 1941. As they were over 65 years old, they had been spared from the deportations in the fall and winter of 1941. But on July 15, 1942, they received the order for the first deportation from Hamburg to the "old age ghetto" Theresienstadt. Elsa Breslauer died in Theresienstadt on May 20, 1943. Fritz Breslauer followed her on August 9, 1943. On his death certificate, the Jewish doctors had listed lung TB and an intestinal infection as illnesses, and pneumonia as the cause of death.

Both of their names can be read on the memorial plaque at Hamburg's Sternschanze in 2020, which commemorates the deportation on July 15, 1942. The couple Fritz and Elsa Breslauer are remembered in Hamburg by Stolpersteine at Rostocker Straße 44.

Selma Breslauer's father died in Bamberg on April 11, 1941. Her mother Flora Kahn was deported soon after on Nov 27, 1941 to Nuremberg and from there to Riga. Most of the people deported from Bamberg to Riga-Jungfernhof were shot there in the surrounding forests.

Selma Breslauer's sister Else Kahn first worked as a housemaid in Hamburg and then moved to Berlin-Tiergarten on April 24, 1941, where she married Rudi/Rudolf Pottlitzer (born April 27, 1894 in Bromberg, Polish: Bydgoszcz). Else and Rudi Pottlitzer were deported from Berlin to Riga on January 25, 1942. The last trace of Else Pottlitzer is found in the Riga ghetto on August 24, 1943, that of Rudi Pottlitzer on April 7, 1943. When and where they were murdered is not known.

Flora Kahn and her daughters Selma Breslauer and Else Pottlitzer are remembered by stumbling stones at Austraße 23 in Bamberg and the corresponding biographies (see

Hermann Breslauer's sister Käthe was the only survivor of the Fritz Breslauer family. She had married Kurt Loewenstein in Berlin, an artist in the advertising business. As an artist, he had already changed his name from Loewenstein to Laps before the persecution began. Their last residential address was in Berlin Schmargendorf, Ladeckenstr. 10. In 1933 they emigrated to Holland, where they later went into hiding. Thus they survived and lived last in Amsterdam, Helmerstraße 137 II. In 1947 they emigrated to Norwalk, Connecticut (USA). Käthe Laps took American citizenship and worked there as a domestic helper while her husband Kurt was ill and unemployed. Käthe later divorced Kurt Laps and married George Lyman Paine in 1957, taking the name Kate Paine. She lived at 6, Channing Place, Cambridge, Massachusetts. Both spouses belonged to the Quaker religious community in the United States.

Kate Paine suffered from the fate of her family for the rest of her life. In 1957 she was already so seriously ill because of it that her attending physician strongly advised her not to concern herself further with the persecution of the family and the application for reparations.

Translation: Beate Meyer

Stand: July 2023
© Birgit Geyer

Quellen: 1; 3; 4; 5; 7; 8; Staats- und Universitätsbibliothek Hamburg - Hamburger Adressbücher von 1915 – 1941; Stadtarchiv Kiel – Kieler Adressbücher von 1900 – 1907; Stadtarchiv Kiel – Geburtsregister (Zugriff 14-11-2022); StaH Entschädigungssachen: 213-13_25489 (Fritz Breslauer); StaH Amt für Wiedergutmachung 351-11_26542 (Kate Paine); 522-1 Kultussteuerkartei: 741-4_K 4291; 332-8 Meldewesen: 741-4_K 2320 und 741-4_2447; Theresienstädter Gedenkbuch: Todesfallanzeige (Zugriff 8-8-2022); Datenbank der Namen von Holocaust-Überlebenden und Opfern: Datensatz-Nummer 11480154 und 11480192 (Zugriff 8-8-2022); ITS Arolsen Archives -, DOC ID 86044504 (Zugriff 8.8.2022); 19-juli-1942 (Zugriff 8-1-2023); www.stolpersteine – Einwohnerbuch der Stadt Bamberg 1934 und 1937; Ortwin Beisbart, Antje Yael Deusel, Franz Fichtl (Hg.): Gedenkbuch der jüdischen Bürger Bambergs. Opfer des nationalsozialistischen Terrors 1933 – 1945. Bamberg 2010, S. 61, 191, 292; ITS Digital Archive, Arolsen Archives: Welle 10 - 10. Osttransport nach Riga, 25.01.1942 / Doc-ID 127187527 (; ITS Digital Archive, Arolsen Archives: AJDC Berlin Kartei (Deportationen) / Doc-ID 11252263 (
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