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Johanna Bachrach (née Borchardt) * 1867

Husumer Straße 1 (Hamburg-Nord, Eppendorf)

JG. 1867

Johanna Bachrach, née Borchardt, born 18.2.1867 in Exin, deported on 19.7.1942 to Theresienstadt, on 21.9.1942 further deported to Treblinka

Husumer Street 1

Johanna Bachrach came from an Orthodox Jewish family from the former Prussian province of Posen, one of her grandfathers was a rabbi. She was a teacher's daughter and teacher's wife and eventually became a teacher's mother. Her father, Salomon Borchardt, held posts in Exin, Schrimm, and Rogasen, where she and her six siblings were born. Her mother Sophie was a née Rosenthal.

Johanna's husband Wolf Bachrach, son of the merchant Josef Bachrach in Nentershausen in Hesse and his wife Zerline, née Levy, had come to Altona as a teacher. They married on February 24, 1896 "on the basis of the authorization of the Royal Registry Office in Altona of January 30, 1896" in Rixdorf, today Berlin-Neukölln, where neither of them lived, but where Johanna's brother, the physician and surgeon Moritz Borchardt, did. He had completed an internship in Hamburg in 1892 and then moved to Berlin. At his sister's wedding, he represented the fathers of the bride and groom, who were not present. Johanna had lived with her parents in Samter, also Prussian province of Posen, until her marriage, where they initially remained. Wolf Bachrach's parents were already deceased.

Johanna, born Feb. 18, 1867, was the oldest, followed by Moritz (born July 29, 1868) and Isaac, who later called himself Ivan (born July 9, 1870), all three born in Exin. During their time in Schrimm, the family grew to include a second daughter, Zerline, and another son, Julius. Salomon Borchardt accepted a position as a teacher in Rogasen, where two sons, Hugo (born June 5, 1878) and Hermann (born Sept. 15, 1881) were born. When Johanna married at the age of 29, her brother Hermann was bar mitzvah.

While the brothers received commercial training, nothing is known about Johanna's background. Two brothers, Isaac/Ivan and Hugo, were already living in Hamburg when she married in 1896; Isaac/Ivan had already started his own family. They later settled in Alt-Rahlstedt, Prussia. Hugo married in 1904, and their wives were sisters Martha and Fanny, née Hildesheim (see, biographies Fanny Borchardt and Eva Leonore Borchardt).

After her marriage, Johanna Bachrach moved in with her husband in what was then Prussian Altona, where she lived for nearly 40 years. Her first address was Wohlers Allee 22, where she gave birth to a daughter, Lotte Selma, on Feb. 7, 1897. After moving to Waterloostraße 30, their son Reinhard Josef was born there two years later, on May 25, 1899. Wolf Bachrach was a teacher at the Jewish community school in Altona and belonged with his family to the local Jewish community. He received a regular salary, which was less than the income of his brother-in-law Ivan. Salomon and Sophie Borchardt moved near their children living in the Hamburg area and initially lived in sublet at Missundestraße 38 I not far from their daughter Johanna.

Between 1896 and 1911 Johanna's own children and seven nieces and two nephews were born. It is not known to what extent Johanna and Wolf Bachrach maintained contact with their siblings who lived far away. Wolf Bachrach's older sister Rebekka had left Nentershausen like their brother Jakob (born Dec. 15, 1870) and married, Jakob in 1894 the Rosa Speier living in Fritzlar. Rebekka had entered into a "mixed marriage" and was living in Rheydt at the end of her life in 1942. Johanna's brother Julius lived as a lawyer in Zurich, Hermann had become an engineer and lived in Stuttgart.

Wolf Bachrach, also known as Willy, moved with his family from Waterloostraße 30 to Waterloostraße 14 in 1906. The children Lotte and Reinhard had in the meantime become of school age and presumably attended the Jewish community’s school where their father taught. Before they came of age, their grandparents Borchardt, Salomon died at home on March 26, 1913 at the age of 68, Sophie at the age of 77 on October 30, 1915 in the Israelite Hospital. In both cases, her son-in-law Wolf Bachrach reported her death to the registry office. They were buried in the Bornkampsweg Jewish cemetery in Bahrenfeld.

Reinhard Bachrach took part in WWI, as did his cousins Hans and Werner Borchardt, the sons of Isaac/Ivan and Martha Borchardt. They returned home, albeit injured, while one son each of Johanna's brother Moritz and her sister Zerline did not survive it.

Lotte became a teacher. The stations along the way are not known. Reinhard studied medicine at the universities of Berlin and Hamburg and passed the medical examination on February 7, 1924. He then wrote a dissertation on "Contribution to the Clinic of Pancreatic Diabetes with Special Reference to Its Origin in Infectious Diseases" and received his doctorate in Hamburg on May 13, 1925. He had already received his license to practice medicine earlier, on March 9, 1925, and was entered in the register of Hamburg physicians upon receipt of the doctoral diploma in May 1925.

While Lotte lived in her parents' house until her marriage, Reinhard moved to Eimsbütteler Chaussee in 1925. He registered a trade as a general practitioner, ran his practice first at Eimsbütteler Chaussee 42, then at No. 37, and additionally ran a consultation hour from 2 to 3 o'clock in his parents' apartment at Waterloostraße 14. Once for the year 1926 he was assessed a contribution by the Altona Jewish community, but this was waived when he transferred to the Hamburg Jewish community. Before receiving a license to practice medicine under a health insurance fund in 1932, he practiced privately and on behalf of the welfare authorities.
The transfer of power to Adolf Hitler in 1933 and the anti-Jewish measures that followed did not affect him immediately as a participant in World War I, but he rightly feared a decline in his practice after the calls to boycott Jewish businesses.

Lotte Bachrach taught from 1924 in the Jewish private school at Bieberstraße 4 in the Grindelviertel, a strictly Orthodox secondary school for girls. Nevertheless, she was a member of the "Freunde des vaterstädtischen Schul- und Erziehungswesens," the teachers' union of the time. After the closure of the school in 1931 due to economic difficulties, she moved to the Jewish Girls' Secondary School at 35 Carolinenstraße. Wolf Bachrach, who in the meantime had become principal at his previous school, apparently retired in 1931 at the age of 64.

In 1933, Wolf and Johanna Bachrach and their daughter Lotte moved to Hamburg to Husumerstraße 1 in Hoheluft-Ost, where they initially maintained their middle-class lifestyle. Whether their move was a reaction to the transfer of power to Adolf Hitler is not known. Wolf Bachrach wanted to remain a member of the Jewish community in Altona and pay his cult tax there instead of changing communities or even paying dues in two communities. Since he was not the only such case, the leaderships of both congregations negotiated the future procedure in such cases, but then left it at that, that a move from Altona to Hamburg was not automatically connected with a change of congregation with the corresponding tax obligations. At the same time, Wolf Bachrach asked the Altona Jewish community for a reduction of the tax from RM 80 to RM 50 per year, which was granted to him.

On December 8, 1933, Reinhard Bachrach married Edith Samson, born January 19, 1903 in Hamburg, who was still living with her parents, Henry and Käthe Samson, at Sierichstraße 100 in Hamburg-Winterhude, a middle-class address. Her father worked in the metal trade, Edith had her own income as a salaried employee.

Reinhard Bachrach initially continued to practice. After the Nuremberg Race Laws were passed in 1935, he no longer saw a future for himself and his family in Germany, returned his license to practice medicine and emigrated. On December 11, 1935, he and his wife, who was expecting their first child, emigrated to the United States on January 21, 1936. They took with them the practice furnishings and parts of the household goods, including silverware. During the crossing, their son was born. Johanna Bachrach would never meet her grandson.

Lotte Bachrach was accepted as an independent member of the Hamburg Jewish community on June 14, 1934. Like her father, she paid regular religious taxes according to her salary. When the Altona community wanted to assess Wolf Bachrach again with 80 RM annual dues for the year 1936, he asked, in view of the costs of his son's emigration and his daughter's upcoming marriage, to leave it at 50 RM. This remained the case.

On December 14, 1936, Lotte Bachrach married the Jewish physician Moritz Krayn, born April 6, 1897 in Pudewitz, then Prussian province of Posen. He had settled in Bunzlau in Lower Silesia, where apparently the Bachrach family had contacts. Lotte's uncle Jakob Bachrach had already lived temporarily in Bunzlau before WWI and had moved back to Lower Silesia in 1936. At their marriage in Hamburg, both fathers of the bride and groom served as witnesses, with Moritz's father Bruno Krayn traveling from Berlin. Lotte Krayn moved to her husband in Bunzlau and left the Hamburg Jewish community for good.

On December 18, 1937, Wolf/Willy Bachrach died and was buried in the Jewish cemetery at Ihlandkoppel in Hamburg-Ohlsdorf. His widow Johanna initially remained at Husumerstraße 1 and transferred to the Jewish community in Hamburg in 1938. She received a widow's pension from Schleswig, from which she regularly paid her cult tax, which was above the basic amount of one Reichsmark per month until her deportation.

At the time of the census in May 1939, Johanna Bachrach was staying with her daughter and son-in-law in Bunzlau. Whether she had moved in with de Wild at Haynstraße 5 as a subtenant before or after that could not be determined. Finally, the Jewish community accommodated her in Blankenese in the "Judenhaus" Steubenweg 36 (today Grotiusweg). Of her relatives, only her sister-in-law Fanny Borchardt lived in Horn in Hamburg. Johanna visited her there from time to time. A granddaughter of Fanny Borchardt remembers "Aunt Johanna from Blankenese" as an elegant lady, more distinguished than her own family. These visits ended with the order that Johanna Bachrach be transferred to the "old age ghetto" of Theresienstadt on July 19, 1942.

The organization of the formal "Heimeinkaufsverfahren", through which the German Reich secured the remaining assets of the old people forcibly deported to Theresienstadt, had to be collected by the "Reich Association of Jews in Germany". It ostensibly served to cover all costs associated with the "home stay," but in her case it had not yet been completed in July 1942. Johanna Bachrach's remaining assets amounted to 1680.71 RM; they were confiscated by the Jewish Religious Association, as the Jewish community was now called, and transferred to the "Reich Association of Jews in Germany" in Berlin (which had to transfer it to an account of the Gestapo).

In fact, in the summer of 1942, mainly elderly people were deported to Theresienstadt, where they did not find an old people's home, but an overcrowded ghetto with a high mortality rate of its inhabitants, whereby there could be no question of "living". All rooms were cramped, and new arrivals were housed in unfurnished attics. The death rate increased, but so did the number of those deported to Theresienstadt, from 21,000 in June to 58,000 in September. To "relieve" the ghetto, thousands of people were transported in 36 large transports to extermination camps, where only a few survived. Theresienstadt turned out to be a transit station to various extermination camps instead of a home for the elderly.

Johanna Borchardt was further deported to Treblinka two months after her arrival, on September 21, 1942, with 2020 people. This was one of the so-called death transports, from which less than 10% of the deportees returned after the war. This was also the case for Johanna Bachrach.

There is no trace of Johanna Bachrach's daughter Lotte and her husband Moritz Krayn as early as 1939, and there is no indication of the time and place of their deaths. The same applies to Johanna's youngest brother Hermann. There is conflicting information about the death of Jakob Bachrach, Johanna's brother-in-law.

Translation by Beate Meyer
Stand: February 2022
© Hildegard Thevs

Quellen: 1, 4, 5, 7, 9; Hamburger und Altonaer Adressbücher; Landesarchiv Berlin, Standesamt Berlin-Rixdorf, Heiratsregister 1896, Nr. 65; StAH 332-5, 14027-772/1933; 332-8 Melderegister; 351-11 AfW, 22629; 522-1, 161; 992 e 2 Band 5; Hamburgisches Lehrerverzeichnis, 1920-1938; Tomas Fedorovic, Vernichtungsstätte Malyj Trostenez und die Juden aus dem Ghetto Theresienstadt, in: Der Vernichtungsort Trostenez in der Europäischen Erinnerung. Materialien zur internationalen Konferenz vom 21.-24. März 2013 in Minsk;;, Zugriffe 15.5.2017; Mitteilungen von Angehörigen.
Stand: 20. September 2017
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