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Fanni Frimeta Deutschländer * 1880
Grindelallee 148 (Eimsbüttel, Rotherbaum)
Fanni Frimeta Deutschländer, born on 27 Aug. 1880 in Hamburg, deported to Riga/Jungfernhof on 6 Dec. 1941
Fanni Frimeta Deutschländer was born together with her twin brother Iska Eduard in Hamburg on 27 Aug. 1880. Her two older brothers, Max Wilhelm and Franz, had been born in Altona, where their father, Moses Deutschländer, worked as a teacher at the Jewish Community School.
Moses Deutschländer, born on 3 Sept. 1852 in what was then the Hungarian town of Puchó, today Slovakia, was the son of Rabbi Samuel and his wife Franziska, née Schönthal. Like his brother Nathan, he had attended the Yeshiva (= Jewish school for the study of the Torah) in Eisenstadt. Both became teachers: Nathan in 1869 when the orthodox Jewish community Adass Yisroel was founded in Berlin; Moses on 1 Apr. 1875 in Altona. Moses first completed the "Royal Seminar for City Schools” in Berlin and, despite his language difficulties, passed the examination on 16 Mar. 1875 with good results.
He was employed as the first teacher at the Israelite Community School in Altona. At that time, Altona belonged to Holstein, which is why he had to take the second teacher’s examination on 1 Oct. 1879 at the Holstein teacher’s seminar in Segeberg. The Altona community school was an eight-grade school for boys and girls. Parallel to his schoolwork in Altona, Moses Deutschländer ran a private business school in Hamburg and taught business classes himself.
On 26 Sept. 1876, Moses Deutschländer married Angelica, née Brasch, born on 22 May 1853 in Hamburg, thus joining a highly educated Sephardic family. The father, Meyer Wolff Brasch, worked as a teacher and sworn translator, his mother Ester, née Meldola, descended on the father’s side from cantors and translators who had come to Hamburg from Amsterdam. In addition, her father, David Eliasib, was a Hebrew teacher, her grandfather Abraham also a notary public. They played important roles in the Portuguese-Jewish and Hamburg Temple Community.
Angelica Deutschländer was a lithographer and drawing teacher working self-employed like her husband at the same address. Between 1878 and 1887, she gave birth to nine children: Max Wilhelm and Franz; the first twin couple Fanni Frimeta and Iska Eduard; Arnold (in 1882); one year later, Friederike Sulamith, called Frieda; Elsa Ester (in 1886); and in 1887, the twins Rafael Georg and Samuel Ferdinand. Samuel only reached one year of age, Rafael died at 19. Ten years later, on 20 Jan. 1898, their tenth child, Natalie Auguste, was born as a late arrival.
Max was required to go to school by 1885, attending the Jewish Community School in Altona, although the family had moved to Hamburg in the meantime. Whether all children attended their father’s school is not known. The sons started commercial careers; Fanni and Auguste became office workers; Elsa attended a teacher-training college and became an elementary school teacher. She was the only one who followed her parents in their careers. None of the children followed into the spiritual offices of their grandfathers.
Whereas her siblings left the parental home, Fanni remained single and lived with her parents until her father died in 1934.
Her brother Franz was the first to leave the house. At the age of 19, he emigrated to the USA in Dec. 1898, married, and settled in Detroit. In 1906, Fanni’s oldest brother Max married. His wife, Hanna Pfifferling, also came from an orthodox family. In 1908 and 1909, the sons Erich and Alfred were born. Max Deutschländer returned to Hamburg after the end of World War I and became a successful book reviewer.
Fannis’ twin brother Eduard moved to Königsberg (today Kaliningrad in Russia) and married the dentist Ida Freudenheim in 1911. Trained as a merchant, he became a bank clerk. He died in 1923 at the age of 43.
In 1913, Arnold Deutschländer married and started a family. He and Fanni were the only children of Angela and Moses Deutschländer who lost their lives in the Shoah.
Friederike Schulamith, called Frieda, married to Joseph Rosenstein, emigrated to the USA, where they settled in St. Louis/Missouri. She later helped her siblings Elsa and Max with their relatives to escape to the USA.
After successfully passing her exams, Elsa Esther Deutschländer joined the Hamburg elementary school service as an assistant teacher in 1907. After four years, she was offered a permanent position. When she married Julius/Jules Richard Gutmann from Lyon in 1912, she gave up her professional activity. Jules Gutmann, taking part in the war on the French side, was killed in action soon after the war began. Until she remarried in 1923, Elsa Gutmann lived with her daughter Sabine at Grindelallee 53, where her parents and her sister Fanni had their residence.
The youngest daughter, Auguste, married a non-Jewish man in 1922, the bookseller Volkmar Scheel, managing director of the Hamburg Booksellers’ Cooperative, and moved out of her parental home. The following year, Elsa also left her parents’ place. She had entered into a second marital union, with Walter Gutmann (see corresponding entry), a relative of her first husband working in Erfurt.
When Moses Deutschländer reached retirement age in 1917, neither he nor his superiors thought about ending his teaching activities in Altona. It was only based on the Retirement Act dated 15 Dec. 1920 that he was retired on 1 Apr. 1921 after 46 years of service. In addition to his teaching activities, he had worked as a translator, served as editor of two Jewish newspapers, and had been active for several Jewish associations. His commitment to the Jewish Community was great and widely recognized, but it was mainly honorary, so that the family’s economic situation remained difficult. It is not known in what context Angelica Deutschländer gave drawing lessons and created lithographs. Apparently, her contribution to the family income was small. After the family moved to Grindelallee 53 following the First World War, she is no longer listed with her own occupation in the Hamburg directory.
By this time, Fanni Deutschländer lived alone with her parents at Neumünsterstrasse 2. Her income was variable for years and always so low that she was not assessed for tax. She voluntarily paid small contributions to the Jewish Community, such as a one-time payment of 5 RM (reichsmark) in 1926. Her father paid only the basic amount of 1 RM per month until 1930. This changed with the world economic crisis, when he was assessed for community taxes at 30 to 40 RM per year.
Angelica Deutschländer died on 1 Jan. 1928. She had reached the age of 75 and found her last resting place in the Altona Cemetery on Bornkampsweg. Moses Deutschländer remained at Neumünsterstrasse 2 until his death at the age of 82 in 1934. Like his wife and sons Samuel and Rafael before him, he was buried at the Bornkampsweg Cemetery. Even beyond his death, he remained connected with Altona.
Fanni Deutschländer moved in with her sister Elsa after the death of her father. Elsa Gutmann had moved with her daughters Sabine and Hilde to Eiffestrasse 393 in Hamburg-Hamm. After her divorce in 1933, being Jewish, she was unable to return to the state elementary school service, but in 1934, she was offered a job at the Israelite girls’ secondary school at Carolinenstrasse 35.
For reasons unknown to us, Fanni Deutschländer changed twice between living with her sister Elsa on Eiffestrasse and as a subtenant of the lingerie dealer Leon Gerstenhaber at Grindelallee 148. After both had emigrated, she temporarily found accommodation with the Jacobsohn family at Rutschbahn 15 on the second floor, before moving to the "Zacharias und Ranette Hesse und Mathilde und Simon Hesse Stiftung,” the residential home of a charitable foundation at Dillstrasse 15, in 1939. From 1941 onward, the building was considered a "Jews’ house” ("Judenhaus”). Fanni Deutschländer was supported by the charity.
During this time, other relatives emigrated: Max Deutschländer, Fanni’s oldest brother, had been sentenced to four years in prison in July 1937 for "racial defilement” ("Rassenschande”). His oldest son Alfred had already emigrated to the USA in May 1937. Hanna Deutschländer, Fanni’s sister-in-law, also prepared her emigration with her younger son Erich to St. Louis/Missouri, leaving Hamburg on 22 Feb. 1939. Max Deutschländer was released from prison at the end of Jan. 1940 on the condition that he leave the German Reich immediately. His emigration to the USA was also prepared. Since the visa was not yet ready for allocation, he traveled by land to Shanghai, for which he did not need a visa. (From there, he managed to travel on to his family in St. Louis only in 1946).
In Mar. 1939, another nephew of Fanni, Arnold Deutschländer’s son Helmuth, emigrated to Australia. His parents Arnold and Dora remained behind with their daughter Annemarie. They were deported to Minsk on 8 Nov. 1941 from their longtime home in Eppendorf (see corresponding entry). After that, of the ten Deutschländer children only Fanni and Auguste lived in Hamburg.
Nothing is known of Fanni Deutschländer’s intentions toward emigration. She was just 60 years old when she was deported to Riga on 6 Dec. 1941. Since the ghetto there was overcrowded, the 753 Hamburg deportees were driven from Skirotava train station on foot to the abandoned former farming estate of the "Jungfernhof” directly on the Düna (Daugava) River. The Jungfernhof had no winter-proof buildings and did not offer enough space for the approx. 4,000 deportees of the four transports comprised of Reich German Jews in Dec. 1941. It is not known when and under what circumstances Fanni Deutschländer perished.
After her deportation, the only one of her siblings still living in Hamburg was her youngest sister Auguste. Together with her husband, Volkmar Scheel, and their daughters Inge and Sidonie, she suffered from the expropriation of her property, unemployment, and the obligation of the family father, as a "person interrelated to Jews” ("jüdisch Versippter"), to perform forced labor. Auguste herself was called up for a "special work assignment” in Theresienstadt on 7 Feb. 1942, a paraphrase for the deportation order. She went underground and survived in hiding for three years until the end of the Nazi regime.
Translator: Erwin Fink
Kindly supported by the Hermann Reemtsma Stiftung, Hamburg.
Stand: September 2020
© Hildegard Thevs
Quellen: 1, 4, 5, 6, 9; Hamburger Adressbücher; diverse Personenstandsregister; StaH 131-11, 1321; 213-11, 53622; 213-13, 6221, 6222; 242-1 II, 13431; 314-15, FVg 3553, 8369; 332-8, A 24, Band 382, 384; 351-11 AfW, 3585, 9176, 21109, 34894; 361-3, A 0818; 424-4 Personalakte, D 097; 522-1, 992 d Band 35; http://real-phd.mtak.hu/33/1/PhD%20Lengyel%2006032011_DOI.pdf, Aufruf 10.5.2019; http://www.steinheim-institut.de /edocs/books/Biographisches_Handbuch_der_Rabbiner_Teil_2.pdf; Erika Hirsch, Moses Deutschländer, in: Das jüdische Hamburg, Hamburg 2006, S. 61.
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