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Arondine Blättner (née Goldschmidt) * 1876
Bansenstraße 13 (Harburg, Heimfeld)
further stumbling stones in Bansenstraße 13:
Arondine Blättner, née Goldschmidt, born on 4 July 1875 in Weener, deported on 15 July 1942 to Theresienstadt, died there on 20 Oct. 1943
Georgine Blättner, née Goldschmidt, born on 2 Nov. 1871 in Weener, deported on 15 July 1942 to Theresienstadt, died there on 9 Dec. 1942
Heimfeld quarter, Bansenstraße 13
The daughters of the Jewish couple Aron and Lina Goldschmidt, née Rosenblatt, Georgine and Arondine Blättner grew up in their birthplace near the German-Dutch border.
Georgine’s subsequent husband, Martin Blättner (born on 16 June 1863) was eight years her senior and the owner of a footwear store in Harburg. The marriage remained childless. Martin Blättner died at the age of 69 years on 7 July 1932 and was buried at the Jewish Cemetery in Harburg.
Arondine Blättner, too, subsequently lived in Harburg/Elbe. Although her husband, the merchant Leopold Blättner (born on 22 July 1876), had the same name as his wife’s brother-in-law, according to the findings to date he was not directly related to him. His father was the Jewish "produce trader” ("Productenhändler”) Selig Blättner (27 Aug. 1826–6 May 1903), who many years before had married Betty Ballin, (2 Apr. 1836–5 Feb. 1900). On 11 July 1901, Arondine and Leopold Blättner had a son by the name of Albert. Leopold Blättner died when he was 48 years old, and he was buried like his parents on the Jewish Cemetery in Harburg.
After the death of their husbands, the two sisters Arondine and Georgine Blättner apparently lived in a shared apartment at Bansenstraße 13.
From 1933 onward, they suffered the consequences of the Nazi assumption of power. On 1 Apr. 1933, members of the Harburg SA also took up their posts in front of the Blättner footwear store on Bansenstraße, which Georgine Blättner strove to continue managing after her husband’s death. The effects of the boycott and growing political pressure probably contributed to the business having to close in the following years.
It must have been hardly less distressing for Georgine Blättner to bid farewell to her only son Albert, who gave up his apartment at Eissendorfer Straße15 in Sept. 1938, emigrating to Argentina with his wife Frieda. Other relatives had already set out earlier on their way into exile.
Another consequence of the increasing threat was the two sisters’ move to the large city of Hamburg, where they repeatedly changed apartments over the coming months and years – or were probably forced to do so. Quickly, their savings dwindled away, funds they had largely used to cover their cost of living, unless relatives provided them with something from time to time.
In July 1942, Arondine and Georgine Blättner were ordered to transfer their place of residence to Theresienstadt in order to spend their old age there, well looked after and cared for, as the Nazi propaganda announced. Beforehand, the future residents had to sign a so-called "home purchase contract” ("Heimeinkaufsvertrag”), turning over their entire assets to the "Reich Association of Jews” (Reichsvereinigung der Juden). The latter subsequently had to transfer the revenues to the Reich Security Main Office (Reichssicherheitshauptamt – RSHA).
In reality, Theresienstadt was anything but a health resort. Cramped conditions prevailed in the shared accommodations. In terms of sanitation, conditions were chaotic. In the winter, temperatures in the unheated rooms were hardly above outside temperatures. Medical care proved to be inadequate as well. Worst of all, however, the inhabitants suffered from constant hunger. In these circumstances, the strength of the elderly in particular was quickly exhausted. The number of illnesses among them increased rapidly. In many cases, all efforts by physicians were in vain. In Sept. 1942, an average of 127 persons died in the old garrison town every day.
Arondine Blättner’s life ended on 9 Dec. 1942; her younger sister Georgine died ten months later on 20 Oct. 1943, supposedly of cardiac insufficiency, according to the entry in her death notice.
In the beginning, the dead were buried outside the ghetto and then, starting in Sept. 1942, cremated in the ghetto’s newly constructed crematorium. The urns containing the ashes of the dead were initially kept in the columbarium and in Nov. 1944 scattered in the Ohre River on the orders of the camp administration to cover up all traces of the crimes.
After 1945, the inscriptions on the gravestones of Martin and Leopold Blättner at the Jewish Cemetery in Harburg were supplemented by two additions, indicating the two wives’ names and dates of birth and pointing to their violent deaths "in the concentration camp.”
In Feb. 1988, a street in Harburg’s Langenbeker Feld housing development was named after Georgine Blättner following a motion by the SPD parliamentary group within the Harburg district assembly.
Translator: Erwin Fink
Kindly supported by the Hermann Reemtsma Stiftung, Hamburg.
© Klaus Möller
Quellen: 1; 2 (F149); 4; 5; 7; 8; StaH, 430-5 Dienststelle Harburg, Ausschaltung jüdischer Geschäfte und Konsumvereine, 1810-08, Bl. 89ff.; Heyl (Hrsg.), Harburger Opfer; Heyl, Synagoge; Amtlicher Anzeiger des Hamburgischen Gestz- und Verordnungsblatte vom 16.2.1988
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