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Erna Goldberg * 1890

Wexstraße 4–6 (Hamburg-Mitte, Neustadt)

JG. 1890

further stumbling stones in Wexstraße 4–6:
Walt(h)er Goldberg, Kurt-Hermann Goldberg, Werner-Richard Goldberg, Hans-Hermann Goldberg, Fanny Rappaport, Ella Rappaport, Julius Rappaport, Berthold Rappaport, Leib Rappaport

Erna Goldberg, born on 16 May 1890 in Neuhaus/Elbe, deported on 6 Dec. 1941 to Riga-Jungfernhof
Hans-Hermann Goldberg, born on 27 Nov. 1932 in Hamburg, deported on 25 Oct. 1941 to Lodz, died there on 29 Mar. 1942
Kurt-Hermann Goldberg, born on 30 Dec. 1919 in Hamburg, deported on 25 Oct. 1941 to Lodz, deported further in Dec. 1941 to Posen (today Poznan in Poland), place of death unknown
Walter Goldberg, born on 23 Mar. 1893 in Neuhaus/Elbe, detained in 1938 in the Sachsenhausen concentration camp, deported on 25 Oct. 1941 to Lodz, died there on 1 Apr. 1942
Werner-Richard Goldberg, born on 2 Nov. 1923 in Hamburg, deported on 25 Oct. 1941 to Lodz, died there on 16 Apr. 1942

Wexstrasse 4-6 (Wexstrasse 6)

The siblings Erna and Walter Goldberg were born in Neuhaus/Elbe near Lüneburg, where the father did business as an independent merchant, albeit on a modest scale. Their parents were Bernhard Goldberg and Klara, née Seckel. In 1901, Bernhard Goldberg sold his house, built in 1897, in today’s Lüneburger Strasse and moved with his family, probably to Celle.

The Goldberg couple had several children, three of whom died very early. The youngest, Kurt Goldberg (born on 21 Jan. 1895) was killed in World War I on 26 June 1916. The older one, Richard Goldberg (born on 11 Mar. 1888) later lived as a merchant in Berlin, from where the widower was deported to Theresienstadt on 30 June 1943 and to the Auschwitz-Birkenau extermination camp on 15 May 1944.

Almost nothing is known about Erna Goldberg, who lived in Hamburg. She was unmarried and worked as an office clerk. From 1928 to 1934, she lived at Martin-Luther-Strasse 24 and in 1928 ran a linen goods shop on Billhorner Röhrendamm for a short time. After 1934, Erna Goldberg was no longer listed in the Hamburg directories, and presumably she rented accommodation as a subtenant. Designated with the occupation of a "worker,” Erna Goldberg was deported on 6 Dec. 1941 from Grindelallee 21 to Riga-Jungfernhof, where all traces of her disappear.

Assisted by a "family scholarship,” Walter Goldberg had attended a private Realschule [a practice-oriented secondary school up to grade 10] in Celle, which he left, however, before obtaining the intermediate secondary school certificate (mittlere Reife). He did commercial training in Hamburg at the department store of the Alsberg Brothers, where he remained employed in sales until 1910. For a while, he then worked as a commercial clerk in Sterkrade/Oberhausen, Duisburg, and Gelsenkirchen.

In 1913, Walter Goldberg changed to the insurance business as an agent and inspector. In 1915, he was drafted for military service and suffered poison gas injuries as well as two other minor injuries until 1918. After the First World War, he opened a shop for "tailoring supplies” at Beim Schlump 52. On 15 July 1919, he married Alice Furmanski, also of the Jewish faith. Alice Furmanski was born on 11 June 1897 in Altona as one of four daughters of the horse dealer Jakob Jankelowitsch Moses Furmanski (born on 14 Feb. 1867, died on 22 June 1928) and his wife Martha (born on 20 Mar. 1869, died on 26 Apr. 1941).

The mother came from the Sephardic Jewish Brandon family, who had been expelled from the Iberian Peninsula generations ago because of their faith.

Alice and Walter’s oldest son Kurt-Hermann was born on 30 Dec. 1919. The second, Werner-Richard, followed on 2 Nov. 1923. The Goldberg couple lived at Beim Schlump 52 until 1926, then in a one-bedroom apartment in the back building at Gärtnerstrasse 114 in Eppendorf. Despite "undeniable diligence,” Walter Goldberg did not earn a regular income as a result of the world economic crisis; his earnings were not sufficient to feed the family. At times, the couple received welfare benefits and was also supported by the Jewish Community. In 1927, Walter Goldberg returned to the insurance business as a representative of Nordwestdeutsche Versicherungsanstalt AG für Handwerk und Gewerbe, an insurance company specializing in crafts and trades clients. But even then, professional success did not come about. In addition, both sons suffered from glandular tuberculosis. During this difficult time, Walter Goldberg was suspected of forging receipts out of necessity and desperation and of not paying over the premiums collected to the insurance company. However, in a court case on 14 Nov.1929, it was established that Walter Goldberg had not committed any embezzlement. But "due to excessive haste and his nervousness,” he had issued copies of the receipt book only with one to two days’ delay, and for this "punishable impropriety” in his bookkeeping, Walter Goldberg was sentenced to a two-month prison term by the Hamburg District Court (Amtsgericht) on 8 Jan. 1930.

Besides, the marriage failed. Alice and Walter Goldberg divorced on 4 June 1931. Both sons, Kurt-Hermann and Werner-Richard, remained with their father on Gärtnerstrasse.

On 30 May 1932, Walter Goldberg entered into a second marriage with Elfriede Sophie Nielsen, 22 years his junior. Elfriede Nielsen was born on 8 June 1915 in Apenrade to a non-Jewish family. The children born to the couple, Hans-Hermann Christian, on 27 Nov. 1932, Ursula, on 2 Nov. 1934, and Ernst-Friedrich Wilhelm, on 15 Nov. 1935, were baptized as Protestant. Walter Goldberg had already declared that he was leaving the Jewish Community at the beginning of 1931.

According to Hamburg directories, Walter Goldberg was active in the advertising industry starting in 1933. Under the company designation of "neon advertising” ("Lichtreklame”), he was also listed as a glass marker, sign manufacturer, and painter. In 1936, the address was Fuhlentwiete 39, then Wexstrasse 6. On 23 June 1938, Walter Goldberg was arrested as part of the "June operation” ("Juni-Aktion”). He was among the 200 Jewish men in Hamburg, out of a total of 700, who were placed in "protective custody” ("Schutzhaft”) for an earlier sentence, even if, as in the case of Walter Goldberg, it had been for a minor offense. Walter Goldberg was transferred from the Fuhlsbüttel police prison to the Sachsenhausen concentration camp and only released on 24 Mar. 1939 on condition that he leave Germany immediately.

In the meantime, the divorce between Walter and Elfriede had taken effect, probably not voluntarily. To protect their children from persecution, Elfriede Goldberg entered into a second marriage with Oskar Bütter. Walter Goldberg thus lost the protection afforded by a "privileged mixed marriage” ("privilegierte Mischehe”).

His youngest son Ernst, then only five years old, later remembered that his father had talked at their last meeting about being "deported” to Shanghai with Hans-Hermann Christian. His father had a bandaged head and he was not allowed to talk about the time of his imprisonment.

In a "questionnaire for emigrants,” Walter Goldberg actually stated that he intended to emigrate to Shanghai with his seven-year-old son Hans-Hermann Christian. On 24 Apr. 1939, the foreign currency office of the Chief Finance Administrator (Oberfinanzpräsident) issued to him a "tax clearance certificate ("Unbedenklichkeitsbescheinigung”), which allowed him to leave the country.

However, emigration did not occur anymore, and the certificate expired. Instead, Walter Goldberg moved from Paulinenallee 6 to Vereinstrasse 40a, where his sons Hans-Hermann Christian and Werner-Richard, who worked as a mechanic’s assistant, lived with Heinrich Glück at Klosterallee 9, on the fourth floor. His oldest son Kurt-Hermann was registered as residing at Rappstrasse 15.

They received the "evacuation order” together for 25 Oct. 1941 to the "Litzmannstadt” Ghetto in Lodz. It remains unclear why Hans-Hermann Christian was added as a "crossbreed” ("Mischling”) to the list of persons "voluntarily” registered for deportation.

Walter Goldberg’s first wife Alice entered into a second marriage with the commercial agent Leopold Feldmann (born on 11 June 1879 in Krakow am See/Mecklenburg) on 2 Oct. 1936. On 3 Apr. 1940, she was widowed. Alice Feldmann and her sister Elly Furmanski (born on 17 June 1894) were also deported to Lodz on 25 Oct. 1941. In May 1942, the sisters received a "departure order” ("Ausreisebefehl”) in the ghetto for a transport, without any destination being indicated. In the hope of obtaining a deferral from deportation, Alice Feldmann wrote the following in a request to the "expulsion commission” (Ausweisungs-Kommission): "I can only cite the severe blows of fate suffered here to justify my request to rescind the departure order. My oldest son, Kurt Goldberg, 21 years old, was taken to Posen in Dec. 1941. I have not heard from him since. My second son, Werner, not yet 18 years old, had contracted such serious diseases, frostbite and furunculosis, during his heavy winter work in day and night shifts, to which he had always volunteered, that he died in hospital on 16 Apr. 1942 after having had both his feet amputated. My divorced husband Walter Goldberg, who arrived in the ghetto by himself with his nine-year-old half-Aryan son and whom I also had to look after, died on 1 Apr. 1942, one day after the death of the nine-year-old child, like him, of physical exhaustion and incurable frost damage. I suffered these terrible mental wounds and severe physical deterioration in the ghetto, and in spite – or because of this, I ask the honorable Commission: please let me stay in the ghetto! I hope I am not making an inappropriate request.
Respectfully, Alice Feldmann.”

Her request was not granted. Only those who could prove an important job in the ghetto had a chance of survival. On 15 May 1942, Alice Feldmann and her sister Elly Furmanski were taken to the extermination camp in Chelmno/Kulmhof and murdered in a mobile gas van on the day of their arrival. (Since 29 Mar. 2005, the one thousandth Stolperstein, located at Woldsenweg 9, commemorates Alice Feldmann). Another sister, Paula Isenberg, née Furmanski (born on 12 Dec. 1898), died in the Majdanek extermination camp (see Hanna and John Sander), the older sister, Wally Jaenecke, née Furmanski (born on 7 May 1893), on 28 Aug. 1943 in Berlin.

The siblings Ursula and Ernst Goldberg survived the Nazi era as "Jewish crossbreeds of the first degree” ("Mischlinge ersten Grades”). Their mother Elfriede died following an accident in July 1945 in Husum; the siblings then grew up with their grandparents. Ernst Goldberg later emigrated to Australia. The Stolpersteine on Wexstrasse, in front of a post-war building, were laid for his family by his son, Robert Goldberg, in 2013.

Translator: Erwin Fink
Kindly supported by the Hermann Reemtsma Stiftung, Hamburg.

Stand: May 2020
© Susanne Rosendahl

Quellen: 1; 9; StaH 351-11 AfW 15377 (Goldberg, Walter); StaH 351-11 AfW 43227 (Goldberg, Kurt-Hermann); StaH 213-11 Amtsgericht Hamburg A16366/1930; StaH 314-15 OFP, FVg 5844; StaH 332-5 Standesämter 6280 u 1422/1893; StaH 332-5 Standesämter 6299 u 1891/1897; StaH 332-5 Standesämter 6044 u 844/1919; StaH 332-5 Standesämter 8168 u 210/1940; StaH 332-5 Standesämter 8174 u 216/1941; USHMM, RG 15.083, 299/626-627, 629, Auskunft von Fritz Neubauer Universität Bielefeld, E-Mail vom 11.6.2012; Koser/ Brunotte: Stolpersteine, S. 154; Persönliches Gespräch mit Robert Goldberg am 5.3.2013; (Zugriff 27.12.2013); Hagen: Amt, Band 2; diverse Hamburger Adressbücher.
Zur Nummerierung häufig genutzter Quellen siehe Link "Recherche und Quellen".

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