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Otto Hammerschlag * 1900

Sierichstraße 140 (Hamburg-Nord, Winterhude)

1939 Flucht Belgien
1942 deportiert nach Auschwitz
ermordet 30.10.1942

further stumbling stones in Sierichstraße 140:
Herta Hammerschlag, Ellen Hammerschlag, Inge Hammerschlag

Herta Hammerschlag, née Magnus, born 16 June 1907 in Hamburg, deported 23 June 1943 to Theresienstadt, transferred 28 Oct. 1944 to Auschwitz
Ellen Hammerschlag, born 28 Oct. 1929 in Hamburg, deported 23 June 1943 to Theresienstadt, transferred 28 Oct. 1944 to Auschwitz
Inge Hammerschlag, born 9 June 1933 in Hamburg, deported 23 June 1943 to Theresienstadt, transferred 28 Oct. 1944 to Auschwitz
Otto Hammerschlag, born 13 Sep. 1900 in Duderstadt, deported 26 Sep. 1942 from Belgium to Auschwitz, murdered there, presumably 31 Oct. 1942

We don’t know when Otto Hammerschlag, the son of Moritz and Julie (Hesse) Hammerschlag, came to Hamburg. He had two brothers, Friedrich and Karl, who survived the Holocaust. His mother Julie joined him at some point in Hamburg.

Otto Hammerschlag was a businessman. According to his listing in the telephone book, his company was located on Emilienstraße in Eimsbüttel from 1928-1932. In 1933 he became a partner in his father-in-law’s, Moritz Magnus Jr., weapons and ammunition wholesaling company at Düsternstraße 48/50.

He married Herta Magnus on 3 March 1928. The family lived at Sierichstraße 140 until about 1935, and then at Haynstraße 23 in Eppendorf. Edgar Hammerschlag, probably a distant relative, also lived at this address. He moved to Bad Wildungen in 1938 and was murdered at Auschwitz in 1944.

Otto Hammerschlag had his first experience with prison in 1938: he was held in "protective custody” at the Fuhlsbüttel prison from 15-30 November 1938, after the November Pogrom. In December of that year he travelled to Belgium on a business trip, but he remained there and settled in Liège. The security of his residence there ended with the German occupation of Belgium. After the war, the International Committee of the Red Cross discovered that he had been arrested on 24 September 1942 and taken to the Mechelen Transit Camp. Two days later he was sent to Auschwitz. According to the ICRC, his body was burnt in the Auschwitz crematorium on 31 October 1942.

Otto Hammerschlag’s wife Herta and his daughters had remained in Hamburg. The girls attended the Talmud Tora School on Grindelhof. Herta Hammerschlag attempted to organize the family’s emigration to Belgium. She submitted the mandatory inventory lists of their belongings and assets, and she filled out the "Questionnaire for Emigrants” several times. She had to accept the fact that she would only be able to take a small part of her valuables with her, and paid the required fees for taking her belongings out of the country, which amounted to 685 Reichsmarks. But their emigration was delayed. The authorities repeatedly made inquiries about her husband’s company – whether he had debts in the country or abroad, whether he had unpaid taxes, and were repeatedly given the answer that there were no objections to the family emigrating. Suddenly, in the spring of 1939, the Hammerschlag file disappeared. The Keim, Krauth & Co. moving company, which was to ship the family’s belongings from Hamburg to Belgium, sent a letter to the Foreign Exchange Office on 9 May 1939, with the "polite request, to please do everything in your power to find the file. We would like to point out that the clearance certificate will become partially invalid on the 15th of this month, and that we must load the shipment before that date. Heil Hitler!”

In the end, Herta Hammerschlag and her daughters were not able to leave the country. Their emigration was, in all likelihood, foiled by the authorities’ contrived hurdles described above.

In April 1939, Herta Hammerschalg received permission from the Foreign Exchange Office to pay her mother-in-law Julie Hammerschlag, who lived in Eppendorf, 1500 Reichsmarks on behalf of her husband. The money was to go to Julie’s living expenses and her planned emigration to Johannesburg, where her eldest son Friedrich lived. Julie Hammerschlag’s emigration plans were never fulfilled – she took her life on 17 July 1941.

In the spring of 1939, Herta Hammerschlag gave up the apartment on Haynstraße, and she and her daughters moved in with her parents at Oberstraße 62. This property was sold in 1939, and Mortiz Magnus’ company was liquidated at the end of the year and taken over by the A. Kramer company. Herta Hammerschlag’s address in 1940 was Ostmarkstraße (Hallerstraße before 1933 and after 1945) 76 II, c/o Dammann. Her address on the deportation list for Theresienstadt on 23 June 1943 was listed as the "Jews’ house” at Beneckestraße 4.

Hertha Hammerschlag, her 10- and 14-year-old daughters Inge and Ellen, and her father Mortiz Magnus were deported to Theresienstadt on 23 June 1943. During its existence, the Theresienstadt Concentration Camp had a total of 140,000 prisoners, at some times more than 30,000 at a time. In order to make room for new arrivals, transports of prisoners were sent to Auschwitz. Magnus Moritz was on one of these transports, on 5 April 1944. His daughter and granddaughters followed on 28 October 1944. After they left Thereseinstadt, all traces of them are lost.

Herta, Ellen, and Inge Hammerschlag were declared dead after the war.

Translator: Amy Lee

Kindly supported by the Hermann Reemtsma Stiftung, Hamburg.

Stand: October 2016
© Ulrike Sparr

Quellen: 1; 4; 5; 8; AfW 130900; StaHH 522-1 Jüd. Gemeinden 992e2 Bd. 5; StaHH 314-15 Oberfinanzpräs., F 886; StaHH 213-8 Staatsanwaltschaft Oberlandesgericht – Verwaltung , Abl. 2, 451 a E 1, 1 c; Standesamt Duderstadt (Mail von Hrn. Eike Dietert, A-37130 Gleichen, 30.01.13) Amtliche Fernsprechbücher Hamburg, 1895, 1900, 1904, 1910,1914,1919, 1928–1939; Serge Klarsfeld et Maxime Steinberg, Mémorial de la déportation des juifs de Belgique, Brüssel 1982; Ursula Randt, Die Talmud Tora Schule in Hamburg 1805 bis 1942, Hamburg, 2005, S. 13.
Zur Nummerierung häufig genutzter Quellen siehe Recherche und Quellen.

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