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Max Ahronheim * 1888

Oderfelder Straße 15 (Eimsbüttel, Harvestehude)

JG. 1888

further stumbling stones in Oderfelder Straße 15:
Adolf Max Ahronheim, Egla Emma Ahronheim, Karl Max Ahronheim, Max Brandenstein, Bettie (Betty) Brandenstein, Hugo Wallach, Gertrud Wallach, Gert Wallach, Ernst Wallach

Max Ahronheim, born 19.8.1888 in Waren/ Mecklenburg, deported 7.9.1943 from the Netherlands to Auschwitz, murdered there 10.9.1943

Oderfelder Straße 15 (Harvestehude)

Max Ahronheim was the second oldest son of Elias "Eli" Ahronheim (1854-1927), a merchant and citizen born in Waren, and Dora Ahronheim, née Hirsch (1863-1936) from Hamburg, who had been married in a civil ceremony in Hamburg in 1884. Max had four siblings: Richard (born Apr. 8, 1886 in Waren), Ludwig (born March 24, 1891 in Waren), Hans (born Apr. 7, 1894 in Waren) and Bertha Ahronheim, later married Zahler (born Apr. 18, 1900 in Waren). The father Elias Ahronheim was active in the Jewish community of Waren, which in 1900 still had 55 members: around 1895 he acted as its first leader and from 1899 to 1901 he took over the office of accountant.

The Ahronheim family was recorded in the census of Mecklenburg-Schwerin on December 1, 1900 with the residence Waren and the address Große Burgstraße 15. The house also housed her father's store for textiles ("dress fabrics, bodices, blouses, gloves and winter coats"). She stated "Mosaic" (= old expression for Jewish) as her religion. In addition to the parents and the five children, the maid Ida Müller was also recorded in the census as "present in the household".

The first-born daughter Johanna had died in 1886 at the age of one. Max attended the citizen school in Waren for three years (as a pre-school to the Gymnasium) and from 1898 to 1904 (Sexta to Tertia) the Gymnasium there. In June 1904 the eldest son and merchant apprentice Richard Ahronheim died at the age of 18.

In December 1906, the parents and their children Hans and Bertha left the town of Waren, which had a population of around 9,000, and moved to Hamburg, which at that time already had a population of over 700,000. Max Ahronheim had already gone there in May 1904 to begin his training as an export merchant, during which time he lived with his maternal grandfather, master tailor Julius Hirsch (1823-1906), at Grindelallee 73.

In the Hanseatic city, the Ahronheim family first lived at Rutschbahn 41/ Rotherbaum (1908-1913), a side street of the Grindelhof. Ahronheims lived on the 3rd floor. Elias Ahronheim also tried to start his own textile business in Hamburg. Together with (master tailor ?) Heinrich Gerecke, he operated a store for women's clothing under the company name Gerecke & Ahronheim. However, the company only appeared in the address book in 1907 with the address Jungfernstieg 40 I. Floor.

Hans Ahronheim attended the Wilhelm-Gymnasium until he passed his secondary school leaving examination and then completed a 5-year apprenticeship as a dental technician. After his apprenticeship, Max Ahronheim worked as an employee at the insurance brokerage firm Bleichröder & Co, Trostbrücke 2, general agency of the "Anker" life insurance company in Vienna. The next apartment of the Ahronheim family was in the parallel street, Rappstraße 13/ Rotherbaum (1914-1917). Both father and son Max were listed here with their own agency business.

At the beginning of the war in 1914, Elias Ahronheim's three sons were 26, 23 and 20 years old. Whether there was initial enthusiasm for the war in the Ahronheim household is not known. But Hans Ahronheim enlisted as a war volunteer and was awarded the Iron Cross II Class and the Mecklenburg Cross of Merit. Max Ahronheim was, according to later information from his brother Hans, deployed at the front for the longest time of the war as a machine-gunner; in October 1917 or October 1918 he is said to have been taken prisoner of war in France, which lasted for him until the end of the war. He took his subsequent war award, the Cross of Honor for War Participants 1914/1918, with him into emigration.

However, Max Ahronheim's award was "only" a Cross of Honor for War Participants with an oak wreath instead of the Cross of Honor for Frontline Fighters with a laurel wreath and crossed swords. (The Cross of Honor was endowed by Reich President Hindenburg for the 20th anniversary of the World War in July 1934 and was awarded only upon application. Quite a few Jewish World War II participants later hoped that this award would provide them with some protection from persecution during the Nazi era. After his arrest and deportation, Max Ahronheim's Cross of Honor came into the possession of friends in Amsterdam, who later gave it to the Jewish Historical Museum Amsterdam).

Shortly after his return from a long captivity in May 1920, 31-year-old Max Ahronheim joined the Ludwig Ahronheim company, founded shortly before by his 28-year-old brother Ludwig, as a partner and became a 49% shareholder in the general partnership. The company was active in the grain and animal feed industry and, after brief initial stops near the port and the town hall, then rented business premises in the "Wrangelhaus" office building at Gänsemarkt 60, which was built in 1913/1914 (1924-1931). (A few years later, the street assignment was changed and the commercial building was given the address Jungfernstieg 49). In 1932, it also housed the offices of the grain brokerage firm Otto Oppenheim & Co. founded in 1920 (owned by Otto S. Oppenheim and Carl Glaser), founded in 1920, and the grain import company C. Mackprang jun. GmbH, founded in 1919, which also owned the building. Ludwig Ahronheim's company made an average net profit of 13,500 Reichsmark per year.

In December 1922, Max Ahronheim married Egla Emma Kallmes (born Febr. 28, 1896 in Wandsbek), daughter of the house broker Julius Kallmes (born Apr. 5, 1861 in Hamburg), who was also Jewish, and had two sons with her: Adolf Max (born Nov. 19, 1923 in Hamburg) and Karl Max (born Aug. 11, 1926 in Hamburg). The family's residential addresses were: Schwenckestraße 2/ Eimsbüttel (1920-1924), Hallerstraße 64 I. Stock/ Rotherbaum (1925-1928), Jungfrauenthal 26/ Harvestehude (1929-1932) and Oderfelder Straße 15/ Harvestehude (1932-1933). The residential and business addresses point to the rise and finally to secure economic circumstances.

Presumably from April 1930, the older son attended a public school near Oderfelder Strasse. In June 1925, passports were issued for Max and Emma Ahronheim, indicating a joint vacation trip. Unfortunately, we do not know the destination. The Ahronheims spent their summer vacation in July 1932 together with Hans and Edith Ahronheim in Wyk on Föhr. About ten months after the Nazi "seizure of power," Max and Emma Ahronheim decided to leave Germany.

The family emigrated to Denmark in November 1933 and lived in the Copenhagen district of Østerbro (Strandboulevard 64), which was one of the better residential areas of the city. Max Ahronheim already knew Copenhagen from business trips, where friends from Hamburg with Danish citizenship also lived. Otto Oppenheim (born Dec. 27, 1883 in Rahden, Westphalia), formerly owner of the brokerage firm for grain and feedstuffs Otto Oppenheim & Co., had also lived in Copenhagen since 1930, where he died in March 1940.

Max and Emma Ahronheim's two sons attended the German Sankt Petri School (Larslejsstræde 5) in the center of the Danish capital - the oldest German school abroad and an upscale private school. The sons took additional private lessons in Danish to get by outside of school. In the St. Petri School, there were already supporters of National Socialism in the teaching staff and student body. For example, the teacher Hans Schulz, Karl Ahronheim's class teacher, was "site leader of the Danish youth leadership of the Hitler Youth (HJ)" in Copenhagen; the son of the principal Fritz Maywald also belonged to this foreign HJ. The resistance against the Jewish emigrants must have been massive in the school.

But there were also problems with Max Ahronheim's commercial independence: "In Copenhagen, the decedent tried to create a new livelihood for himself. Because he was denied official permission, he acquired a cigarette business under someone else's name. However, he was reported to the police and had to leave Denmark with his relatives in April 1935," wrote the Hamburg Office for Reparations in 1974 in its notice for compensation for Max Ahronheim's "professional advancement".

Max Ahronheim traveled ahead to the Netherlands in mid-February 1935 to look for accommodation and work opportunities. Six weeks later, his wife followed with their sons. In Amsterdam they lived in the Ijsselbuurtin district of Rijnstraat 124, from February 16, 1935 on the 1st floor and from May 5, 1939 on the 3rd floor to the right of the house built only five years earlier. (This part of the city had been redeveloped in the 1920s in the building styles of the "Amsterdamse School.") The large red brick building in which they lived was not far from the Amstel River.

With the German occupation of the neutral Netherlands in May 1940, Ahronheims again came under the Nazis' power and persecution. Starting in October 1940, Jews in the Netherlands had to report their businesses and business relationships with the corresponding values. In 1941, further extensive reprisals against Jews were enacted, including a ban on entry to public institutions (theaters, cinemas, parks, cafes, etc.), obstruction of the exercise of professions, and a ban on attending public schools. As of May 1942, all Jews in the Netherlands had to wear the yellow "Jewish star" clearly visible on their clothing.

The older son Adolf Ahronheim completed an apprenticeship as an electrician at the Ambachtsschool. Since February 21, 1941, Adolf no longer lived with his parents, but at Nieuwe Heerengracht 179 I. Floor. However, he was forbidden to attend the vocational school in September 1941 because of his Jewish origin. As early as August 2, 1941, Adolf was again registered at his parents' address. On October 9, 1941, he reported to the police the theft of his transport bicycle, which had been stolen from him in the evening in front of Rijnstraat No. 80.

Max Ahronheim seems to have been a peddler for a time and to have offered his goods in suitcases on the spot. This is suggested by a complaint to the police in March 1942, in which he reported the theft of four suitcases of food and soap from his locked cellar. His sister-in-law Fanny Ahronheim later assessed his economic situation in Amsterdam at the time as precarious. "His economic circumstances were extremely modest." He "lived on what was left of his fortune."

In July 1942, the German occupation forces issued a misleading call to the Jewish population to report for a "labor assignment in the East" (= deportation). The 20-year-old Adolf Ahronheim complied with this call and was deported as early as July 15, 1942, on the first deportation train leaving the Westerbork camp to the Auschwitz extermination camp, where his death was recorded by the camp administration for August 10, 1942.

Max, Emma and Karl Ahronheim were interned in the Westerbork camp from August 26, 1942 until September 7, 1943. Then they were deported to Auschwitz and murdered.

Other residents of the house at Rijnstraat 124 were deported from the Westerbork camp to the Sobibor extermination camp in April 1943.

The fate of the other family members:
Max's two-and-a-half younger brother and business partner Ludwig Ahronheim had attended the Waren Gymnasium from 1901 to 1908 and presumably subsequently completed a commercial apprenticeship in Hamburg. He had joined the Jewish Community in 1920. He retained the citizenship of his native Mecklenburg-Schwerin. In Hamburg he was first listed in the address book in 1923; he lived at Rentzelstraße 3/ Rotherbaum (1924-1929) and Isestraße 41/ Harvestehude (1930-1933). He had been married since 1920 to Fanny Levisohn (born Apr. 12, 1895 in Hamburg), with whom he had two sons, Kurt "Kurti" (1922-1931) and Werner Max (born March 18, 1925). The National Socialists excluded his company from trading on the Hamburg grain exchange, thus depriving it of its economic livelihood. Ludwig Ahronheim emigrated with his wife and 10-year-old son to Antwerp in Belgium in October 1935. In 1939, the Nazi state revoked his German citizenship, leaving Ludwig, Emma and Werner Ahronheim stateless. After the invasion of Belgium by the Wehrmacht in May 1940, Ludwig Ahronheim was deported to the St. Cyprien camp in France. He managed to escape from there in September 1940. With his wife and child, he moved to Schaerbeek near Brussels, where they lived at 7 Avenue Maurice Maeterlinck near the Parc du Hamoir.

In October 1941, thanks to a paid escape agent, they escaped via Amiens, Paris and Dax to Marseille in unoccupied Vichy France. However, the Franco-German Armistice Treaty included an obligation on the part of Vichy France to hand over foreign refugees to Nazi Germany. In November 1941, Ludwig Ahronheim was arrested with his wife and children, and the place La Bastida de Jourdans was assigned to them as a kind of ghetto. Once a week they had to report to the French gendarmerie. When Ludwig and Werner Ahronheim were picked up once outside the village, they had to serve a four-week sentence in prison. Ludwig Ahronheim was deported to the Auschwitz death camp on November 6, 1942, from the Drancy assembly and transit camp, a former large housing complex 20 km northeast of Paris. His wife survived in the village of Digne in illegality.

Max's youngest brother Hans Ahronheim (1894-1980) had moved with his parents from Waren to Hamburg in December 1906. He worked since November 1920 as an independent dentist ("nichtapprobierter Zahnheilkundetreibender") with the business address Grindelallee 47 (1923-1930) or Grindelallee 12 (1932-1936) and was an independent member of the Jewish community of Hamburg since May 1923. He had been married to Edith Lievendag (born Jan. 9, 1901 in Hamburg) since 1924 and emigrated with her and their son Heinz (born Sept. 13, 1926 in Hamburg) to Montevideo/ Uruguay in July 1938.
(The practice was taken over by dentist Hans Lüders.) In 1939 Hans Ahronheim succeeded in bringing his parents-in-law Julius and Bella Lievendag to Montevideo. Hans Ahronheim had also made efforts to bring Max Ahronheim and his family into the country; however, the permits were not available until they had already been deported. His sister Bertha Zahler, née Ahronheim, also lived in Montevideo in the 1950s.

Translation by Beate Meyer
Stand: February 2022
© Björn Eggert

Quellen: Staatsarchiv Hamburg (StaH) 213-13 (Landgericht Hamburg, Wiedergutmachung), 834 (Max Ahronheim); StaH 332-5 (Standesämter), 8514 u. 627/1884 (Heiratsregister 1884, Elias Ahronheim u. Dora Hirsch, Trauzeuge u.a. Kaufmann Hermann Fröschel, Hamburg, Wexstr. 6); StaH 332-5 (Standesämter), 2725 u. 21/1888 (Heiratsregister 1888, Hausmakler Julius Kallmes, Wandsbek, Eltern: Hausmakler Nehemias Isaac Kallmes u. Egla geb. Ruben; Cäcilie Wolff, Hamburg, Eltern: Bankier Louis Wolff u. Minka geb. Nathan); StaH 332-5 (Standesämter), 3846 u. 284/1892 (Geburtsregister 1892, Ernst Kallmes, Vater: Hausmakler Julius Kallmes, Wandsbek, Schloßstr. 39); StaH 332-5 (Standesämter), 3850 u. 135/1896 (Geburtsregister 1896, Egla Emma Kallmes, Vater: Hausmakler Julius Kallmes, Wandsbek, Schloßstr. 39); StaH 332-5 (Standesämter), 8697 u. 72/1914 (Heiratsregister 1914, Benjamin Schaps u. Martha Kallmes Hamburg, Hallerstr. 64, Vater: Hausmakler Julius Kallmes); StaH 332-5 (Standesämter), 8743 u. 750/1920 (Heiratsregister 1920, Ludwig Ahronheim u. Fanny Levisohn); StaH 332-5 (Standesämter), 8092 u. 132/1927 (Sterberegister 1927, Eli Ahronheim); StaH 332-5 (Standesämter), 9853 u. 1180/1931 (Sterberegister 1931, Kurt Ahronheim); StaH 332-5 (Standesämter), 1009 u. 449/1933 (Sterberegister 1933, Julie Fröschel geb. Ahronheim); StaH 332-5 (Standesämter), 8137 u. 479/1936 (Sterberegister 1936, Dora Ahronheim geb. Hirsch); StaH 332-8 (Meldewesen), Alte Einwohnermeldekartei 1892-1925, Rollfilm K 6261 (Julius Hirsch); StaH 332-8 (Meldewesen), Einwohnermeldekartei Wandsbek 1892-1927, Rollfilm K 7445 (Julius Kallmes); StaH 332-8 (Meldewesen), A 24 Bd. 325 (Reisepassprotokoll 11698/1925, Max Ahronheim u. Egla Emma Ahronheim geb. Kallmes); StaH 332-8 (Meldewesen), A 24 Bd. 246 (Reisepassprotokoll 11715/1921, Ludwig Ahronheim); StaH 332-8 (Meldewesen), A 24 Bd. 246 (Reisepassprotokoll 11716/1921, Fanny Ahronheim geb. Levisohn); StaH 342-2 (Militär-Ersatzbehörden), D II 132 Band 1 (Max Ahronheim, Musterungen 1908, 1909, 1910); StaH 351-11 (Amt für Wiedergutmachung), 10574 (Max Ahronheim); StaH 351-11 (Amt für Wiedergutmachung), 16352 (Hans Ahronheim); StaH 351-11 (Amt für Wiedergutmachung), 17359 (Käthe Ahronheim); StaH 351-11 (Amt für Wiedergutmachung), 46075 (Adolf Max Ahronheim); StaH 522-1 (Jüdische Gemeinden), 992b (Kultussteuerkartei der Deutsch-Israelitischen Gemeinde Hamburg), Hans Ahronheim, Ludwig Ahronheim, Max Ahronheim, Otto Oppenheim; Jüdischer Friedhof Hamburg-Ohlsdorf (Kurt Ahronheim, Grab R3-247; Dora Ahronheim geb. Hirsch, Grab R3-151); Jüdischer Friedhof Altona (Julie Fröschl geb. Ahronheim, geb. 20.1.1850, gest. 12.12.1933, Grab A13 Nr. 14; Rosalie Levy geb. Ahronheim, beerdigt 1.3.1929, Grab-Nr. 73, Grabkauf 22.8.1894); Stadtarchiv Waren-Müritz, Melderegistereintragungen (Eli Ahronheim, Max Ahronheim); The Wiener Library for the Study of the Holocaust & Genocide, London, Signatur EW3, 3144-3151 (Werner Ahronheim, Organisations and people helped me to escape 1935-1945, Amsterdam 1957, 7 Seiten); Stadtarchiv Amsterdam, SAA Index politierapporten 40-45 (Polizei-Vermerk mit Schreibmaschine in kleinem Heft zu Adolf Max Ahronheim: "woont Rijnstraat No. 124 III, doet aangite van diefstal van zijn transportrijwiel, gepleegd op 9.10.41 tusschen 22.30 en 23 uur, voor Rijnstraat No. 80. Geen vermoeden", übersetzt: lebt in der Rijnstraat Nr. 124 III, meldet den Diebstahl seines Transportfahrrads, begangen am 9.10.41 Uhr zwischen 22.30 und 23 Uhr vor der Rijnstraat Nr. 80. Kein Verdacht); Joods Historisch Museum Amsterdam, Collectie (Max Ahronheim, erekruis 1918); Adressbuch Hamburg (Max Ahronheim) 1920-1925, 1927-1931, 1933; Adressbuch Hamburg (Ludwig Ahronheim) 1923-1932; Adressbuch Hamburg (Hans Ahronheim) 1923-1933; Adressbuch Hamburg (Bleichröder & Co.) 1908, 1910; Adressbuch Hamburg (Rutschbahn 41) 1908; Adressbuch Hamburg (Rappstr. 13) 1915; Adressbuch Hamburg (Jungfernstieg 49) 1932; Handelskammer Hamburg, Handelsregisterinformationen (Firma Ludwig Ahronheim, HR A 23679; Firma Ad. Hirschfeldt, HR A 41496; Otto Oppenheim & Co., HR A 24440; C. Mackprang jun GmbH, HR C 2510; Julius Hirsch Herrengarderoben, HR A 8610); Hamburger Börsenfirmen, Hamburg 1926, S. 10 (Ludwig Ahronheim, gegr. 1920, Inhaber: Ludwig u. Max Ahronheim, Getreide und Futtermittel, Gänsemarkt 60-61); Hamburger Börsenfirmen, Hamburg 1926, S. 461 (Ad. Hirschfeldt, gegr. 1888, Inhaber: Hans Hirschfeldt, Spedition u. Kommission, Große Theaterstr. 48); Hamburger Börsenfirmen, Hamburg 1926, S. 659 (C. Mackprang jun. GmbH, gegr. 1919, Geschäftsführer Ernst Mackprang u. H. Wollesen, Getreide u. Futtermittel, Gänsemarkt 60); Ole Brandenburg Jensen, Landesgruppe Dänemark. NSDAPs udlandsorganisation i Danmark ca. 1932-1945, Odense 2017; Michael Buddrus/ Sigrid Fritzlar, Juden in Mecklenburg 1845-1945, Schwerin 2019, Band 1, S. 277-278 (Gemeinde Waren), Band 2 Kurzbiografien, S. 17-19 (Elias Ahronheim, Hans Ahronheim, Ludwig Ahronheim, Max Ahronheim); Meyers Lexikon, Leipzig 1925, Band 5, Spalte 434 (Dentist); Warener Museums- und Geschichsverein, Heft 16, Mitmenschen – Jüdisches Leben in Waren, Waren 1999, S. 108-109 (Ahronheim); Moniteur Belge/ Belgisch Staatsblad, N. 35, 4.2.1950, S. 788 ("Ahronheim, Ludwig (…), èpoux de Levisohn, Fanny, ayantrésidé en dernierlieu á Schaerbeek, avenue Maurice Maeterlinck 7"); (Volkszählung Mecklenburg-Schwerin vom 1. Dezember 1890, Max Ahronheim in Waren); (Volkszählung Mecklenburg-Schwerin vom 1. Dezember 1900, Familie Eli Ahronheim); (Max Ahronheim, Egla Emma Ahronheim, Adolf Max Ahronheim, Karl Max Ahronheim); (Max Ahronheim, Adolf Max Ahronheim); (Meldekarten Max Ahronheim, Adolf Max Ahronheim);, SAA Index politierapporten 40-45 (Diebstahlsanzeige von Adolf Max Ahronheim, 9.10.1941); (Karin Sintring, (...) In welchem Sinne wird diese Schule geführt?, 5.6.2017); (Ludwig Ahronheim); (Passagierliste Dampfschiff "Oranje Nassau", 1.8.1925 von Hamburg nach Amsterdam, Max u. Emma Ahronheim).

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