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Senta Felixbrodt, geb. Kriwer
© Yad Vashem

Senta Felixbrodt (née Kriwer) * 1900

Eppendorfer Baum 14 (Eimsbüttel, Harvestehude)

JG. 1900

Senta Felixbrodt, née Kriwer, born 14.8.1900 in Hamburg, deported to the Lodz Ghetto on 25.10.1941, murdered in the Chelmno extermination camp on 25 April 1942 or in early May 1942

Eppendorf Baum 14

Senta Felixbrodt was born in Hamburg, the fourth of nine children. We know nothing about her childhood, adolescence or an education. She had left Hamburg for her husband Georg (born 1904 in Halle at river Saale), whom she had married in Hamburg on May 29, 1925. In January 1929, she returned from Bitterfeld together with her daughters Jutta (born May 1, 1927 in Halle at river Saale) and Linda (born August 10, 1928 in Bitterfeld), after the Jewish couple had separated. The marriage was divorced after six years on November 5, 1931 by the district court in Halle.

Senta Felixbrodt and the daughters moved to Hamburg to live with Senta's widowed mother Amalie Kriwer, née Jacobsohn, at Grindelhof 89, House 6. (Her father, Emanuel Kriwer, born in 1866 in Tarnopol/Galicia, had already died in January 1914 at the age of 47).

With a partner, Senta opened a store in October 1929, but it did not bring the success she had hoped for, so she had to close it again as early as July 1930. She was now dependent on welfare payments for a short time, but on August 1, 1930, she found employment as a saleswoman in the "Tietz" department store - Hermann Tietz & Co - on Jungfernstieg, which had opened in 1912. She advised customers there in the needlework department.

In September 1932, her mother Amalie Kriwer died at the age of 65 at Eppendorfer Baum 14, where the family had moved in the meantime.

From May to December 1934, Senta lived with her children and her siblings Olga, Resi and Siegmund Kriwer at Grindelallee 136. Olga worked as a clerk at the Julius Hamberg company, Resi Kriwer as a saleswoman at the Robinsohn fashion house, and her brother Siegmund, a trained shoe salesman and window dresser, was unemployed at the time.

In April 1934, Senta Felixbrodt also lost her job: the company Hermann Tietz & Co was "aryanized". The company had run into liquidity problems due to the effects of the world economic crisis. Here the banks saw the "opportunity" to install an "aryan" management. The well-known department store "Tietz" became the "Alsterhaus", still located under the same name on Jungfernstieg today. The Jewish employees like Senta Felixbrodt received their notice, their last salary and had to register as unemployed. But it was almost impossible for Jewish job seekers to find new employment.

Senta Felixbrodt and her daughters now lived on unemployment benefits and crisis assistance. The latter was intended to support the unemployed who had not acquired any entitlement to unemployment insurance benefits or whose entitlement had expired. There was no entitlement to these benefits; they were granted only after a means test. As a rule, recipients had to perform "compulsory labor." (Pflichtarbeit)

The children's father presumably did not meet his maintenance obligations. Georg Felixbrodt, as Senta Felixbrodt stated in her application for unemployment benefits, was supposed to have remarried, become the father of another child, and possibly reside abroad.

The Kriwer siblings gave up their apartment at Grindelallee 136. Olga Kriwer married and moved with her husband to Heimhuder Straße 86. Senta Felixbrodt, in view of her modest financial means, rented a room with use of the kitchen for herself and the children from the Cohn family at Isestraße 96 in December 1934. They lived in such cramped quarters for the next twelve months.

Senta Felixbrodt saw a chance to improve her living situation by taking in two foster children. She moved into an apartment at Eppendorfer Landstraße 28, thus creating the spatial conditions for the care of the Jewish siblings Elinor and Robert Baltaxe. Their parents were divorced, the mother lived in England. In Hamburg, the Jewish lawyer Spitzer took care of the legal affairs of the siblings as their guardian, and their aunt paid the maintenance costs. The foster children were the same age as Senta's daughters. All four attended the school of the Jewish community at Johnsallee 33. (The school had been at this location since 1931, succeeding the Lyceum Dr. Jakob Löwenberg, which had previously been located there). In the afternoons, they went to an after-school care center run by Eva Warburg at Hochallee 76.

Since the guardianship was planned for a longer period, Senta Felixbrodt had signed an annual lease for the apartment. But the situation soon changed, because in 1936 the siblings moved to England. (Elinor Baltaxe (born 1928), later a well-known painter, lived in England and Scotland, Robert Baltaxe (born 1927) in Scotland. The siblings died in 2003 and 2004, respectively).

Senta Felixbrodt hoped to compensate for the loss by renting out a room. She filed a new application for crisis support. A welfare worker who supervised the family and examined the application certified in her report: "Mrs. F. is trying very hard to get the second room rented. ... Since the second room is modernly furnished and very appealing, Mrs. F. can justifiably hope that she will soon get it rented." The Jewish community of Hamburg now covered the school fees for both girls, and Senta's sister Resi supported them with the rent payments until the lease expired.

In October 1936, Senta Felixbrodt and her daughters moved to Jungfrauenthal 37 on the II floor. This house also housed a day care center for children, which Eva Warburg now ran in place of the now defunct Kinderhort. Jutta and Linda visited it daily after school.

Mirjam Pollin, née Kurzbart, the daughter of Else Kurzbart (see, who now lives in Israel, remembers her mother and daughters well. She went to the day home as a child. "Susenta," as Senta was called by her friends, Linda and Jutta, met her there. Mirjam envied the two sisters because they had only a very short way home from the day care center, two flights of stairs. Jutta had been a particularly pretty child with curls like the child star Shirley Temple, Linda had been somewhat in her shadow. She remembers Senta Felixbrodt: "Susenta was a very kind woman, always with a smile on her face, young and spirited, she played with the children, that's how I remember her."

Eva Warburg cared intensively for the children entrusted to her and also provided joyful experiences. Mirjam relates, "Jutta and Linda were also there when Eva Warburg took all the children to Denmark for four weeks during the summer vacations. A large house was rented there and we enjoyed four weeks of freedom."

Such freedom counted all the more as the daughters were subjected to anti-Semitic attacks in their daily lives in Hamburg. For example, Linda recalled insults and assaults by older boys, presumably members of the Hitler Youth (HJ). Once, she said, she and her sister were tied to a tree and tormented. Since then, the mother no longer allowed the daughters to go out alone.

School operations in Johnsallee had been increasingly restricted since 1933; they were finally discontinued in 1939 and the school building was converted into an apartment building.

Eva Warburg saved the daughters' lives. They were able to leave Hamburg in the spring of 1939 with a Kindertransport to Sweden, which Eva Warburg had organized and accompanied. Mirjam was also brought to safety in this way, but did not see her former playmates again in Sweden. Only the mothers kept in touch with each other in Hamburg.

Jutta and Linda had to get used to a new language, school and Swedish foster families in Sweden. Linda attended a housekeeping school for a short time after elementary school. Jewish welfare organizations supported her by paying her school fees until she was 14 years old. Jutta's and Linda's report cards attested to diligence, order, great interest and good grades. Linda later worked as an assistant in a laboratory and then as a clerk, Jutta in the household and then as an office assistant.
Senat Felixbrodt did not live to see all this. She had to vacate the apartment at Jungfrauenthal 37. The children's day care center had been dissolved with Eva Warburg's emigration. The house now experienced a new use as an old people's home of the Reich Association of German Jews and was later converted into a "Judenhaus".

Senta Felixbrodt briefly moved in with her aunt Ida Mitau, née Jacobsohn, in Dargun (today the Mecklenburg Lake District). After the death of her husband Hugo in 1938, she lived in the synagogue, which was no longer in use, as did her sister-in-law Bertha Mitau, as one of the last Jewish residents. This was also where Senta Felixbrodt was at the time of the census on May 17, 1939.

Back in Hamburg, she lived at Klosterallee 10 and was deported from there to the Lodz Ghetto on October 25, 1941, along with other residents. With her was Elfriede Appel (see, the mother-in-law of her sister Charlotte

Charlotte and Alfred Appel had been able to leave for Porto Alegre in Brazil in December 1938. There Elfriede Appel and Senta Felixbrodt sent a last letter before the deportation. Senta asked Charlotte to keep in touch with her daughters. "To my beloved children I write only that I am away. Please write to them quite often dear Lotte, I will probably hardly be able to write."

Senta Felixbrodt died on April 25, 1942, according to the records of the Lodz Ghetto Archives.

However, the chronicle of the ghetto does not record a transport on that day, but from April 25 to 26, a control commission checked those working in the ghetto, as the chronicle stated, to determine the actual number of working people and to weed out those unable to work. Perhaps during this inspection she was among those who were no longer considered fit for work and received the "resettlement order" for the beginning of May. This means that she was transported to the nearby Chelmno extermination camp and murdered there immediately upon arrival in a gas van.

Elfriede Appel had died in the ghetto itself three months earlier on January 7, 1942.

Ida and Bertha Mitau were deported from Berlin to the Theresienstadt ghetto on November 20, 1942, where Ida died on February 21, 1944, and Bertha on March 5, 1943.

In memory of Senta Felixbrodt, the Stolperstein, representative of her various addresses, is located in front of the house Eppendorfer Baum 14. An inscription on the gravestone of her mother Amalie Kriwer (Jewish Cemetery Hamburg-Ilandkoppel) commemorates their murdered daughters Senta and Paula with the addition "daughters and mothers".

Jutta and Linda Felixbrodt suffered throughout their lives from the separation from their mother, which was reflected in sometimes severe illnesses. Linda emigrated to Los Angeles/USA in January 1949, where her mother's siblings lived. In 1951 she met Leo Weg, who came from Frankfurt a. M., and married him in August 1953. They became parents of two sons. She died on December 5, 1961, at the age of only 33.

Jutta (later June) married Herbert Leitner, a refugee from Vienna, in Sweden on March 19, 1950. Their first daughter was born in Sweden in 1953. A year later, the family moved to the United States and also settled in Los Angeles, California, where their second daughter was born in 1957. June Leitner died on February 26, 2020 in Enicno, a neighborhood of Los Angeles, at the age of 92.

The fate of Senta Felixbrodts, née Kriwer, eight siblings:
Jeanette Kriwer, born 4, 1896 in Hamburg, died just there on September 7, 1897.

Philipp Kriwer (born 1897 in Hamburg) lived in Berlin, left Germany in November 1923 for New York, USA. He is said to have lived in Cape Town/South Africa in 1938 - like his brother John - and to have died there in 1953.

John Kriwer (Ephraim Jäkel), born in Hamburg in 1899, lived in Hamburg. He learned the tailoring trade and owned his own tailor shop at Pelzerstraße 13 (later No. 19). In 1935 he emigrated to Cape Town, South Africa, where he married his wife Thea (maiden name unknown) in December 1936. Both moved to the USA in 1949 and became naturalized citizens there. John Kriwer entered into a second marriage in December 1952 with the seamstress Rosa Graff (born 1903 in Hamburg), whom he had known from his youth. John spent the last years of his life in California, dying in Las Vegas on April 12, 1957.

Olga Kriwer, née Horwitz, née Magnus, born in Hamburg in 1902, worked as a commercial clerk. In May 1935 she married Max Michael Magnus, who died in an accident in Halle in November 1935. She lost her job in May 1940 and emigrated overland to Shanghai. There she entered into a second marriage with Martin (Denny) Horwitz in September 1941. The couple lived in Shanghai in the ghetto from May 1943 - May 1945 and moved to Los Angeles, California in 1948. She died there in 1973.

Paula Podchlebnik, née Kriwer, born in Hamburg in 1903, emigrated to Belgium in 1933 and married Max Podchlebnik there. They had two children, Renè (born 1937 in Brussels) and Amelie (born 1941 in Le Bousquet, France). In France they were imprisoned in the Drancy camp. From there Paula Podchlebnik and the children were deported to Auschwitz on October 28, 1943 and murdered. They are commemorated by an inscription on the Mémorial de la Shoa, the central Holocaust memorial in Paris. Max Podchlebnik is not listed there, his fate is unknown.

Siegmund Kriwer, born in Lüneburg in 1906, worked in Hamburg at the Speier shoe store. He lost his job because of the "aryanization" of the "Speier Schuhwarenhäuser". In January 1939, he emigrated to Shanghai, where he married Aenne-Grete Bischofswerder (born 1917 in Hamburg), who had also fled there, in August of that year. From May 1943 to August 1945 they lived in the Shanghai ghetto and were able to leave for the United States in April 1947. In July 1941, son Freddy (Danny) was born. The poor living conditions in Shanghai put a strain on Siegmund's health; he died on November 27, 1954 in Los Angeles, California, followed by Aenne-Grete Kriwer in 2000.

Charlotte Appel, née Kriwer, born 1908 in Lüneburg, was married to Alfred Appel (born 1906 in Hamburg). After his arrest to the Sachsenhausen concentration camp in November 1938, the couple left Germany immediately on December 23, 1938, arriving in Porto Alegre, Brazil, via Paraguay. Charlotte Appel died there on May 22, 1956 (see also on Elfriede Appel).

Resi Liepmann, née Kriwer, born 1910 in Lüneburg, was married to Heinz-Kurt Liepmann (born 1909 in Altona) since 1935 in Hamburg. In November 1938 she suffered a stillbirth. An emigration to Peru fell through. The couple fled to Shanghai in January 1939. There they divorced in April 1942. Heinz-Kurt Liepmann went to the USA with his second wife Hannelore in 1947 and lived in St. Louis. Nothing is known about the further fate of Resi Liepmann.

Translation by Beate Meyer
Stand: February 2022
© Christina Igla

Quellen: 1, 4, 5, 8, StaH: 314-15_FVg 2988, -FVg 7278; 351-11_23859, -23860, -26436, -30911, -33249, -34625, -48310, -30911, -48747; 332-5_5234/1747/1897, 332-5_5936/160/1896, 332-5_6297/3884/1896, 332-5_6301/3680/1897, 332-5_13121/583/1899, 332-5_13275/1926/1900, 332-5_8788/195/1925, 332-5_8112/377/1932; 332-5-_302/192/1914; 332-8_A30 Film 6437; 332-8_A33/4 Film 7326, 332-8_A51/1 Film Nr. 2445, 522-1_992 b Deportationsliste; Standesamt Bitterfeld (jetzt Bitterfeld-Wolfen), Nr. 182/1928 (Geburtsurkunde Linda F.); Ursula Wamser/Wilfried Weinke: "Eine verschwundene Welt – jüdisches Leben am Grindel", Springe 2006, S. 330; Frank Bajohr: "Arisierung" in Hamburg. Die Verdrängung der jüdischen Unternehmer 1933-45, Hamburg 1997, S. 337; Artikel "TAZ" vom 29.3.2012: "‘Alsterhaus‘ sagten nur die Nazis" von Roger Repplinger; email v. 3.4.2012 von Frau J. M.; (Elinor Baltaxe), Zugriff 27.4.2014; (Schiffspassage Philipp Kriwer), Zugriff 10.5.2014, Mémorial de la Shoah, Zugriff am 10.5.2014, Hamburger Adressbuch (online), verschiedene Jahrgänge Zugriff 6.4.2021;, Zugriff 14.4.2021; Adressbuch Bitterfeld Jahrgang 1928 /online über Zugriff am 2.5.2021;, Zugriff am 9.4.2021; Email vom 1.2.2019 Mirjam Pollin (mit herzlichem Dank), Email vom 5.5.2021 (und weitere) von Michael Viebig, email-Kontakt mit der Gedenkstätte "Roter Ochse" in Halle (Leiter Michael Viebig) am 22. u. 23.4.2021; (Nachruf June Leitner); (Interview June Leitner durch die USC Shoa Foundation), abgerufen am 22.4.2021.
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