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Already layed Stumbling Stones

John Löwenstein * 1886

Grindelhof 9 (Eimsbüttel, Rotherbaum)

1941 Minsk

further stumbling stones in Grindelhof 9:
Hilda Gutmann, Ilse Gutmann, Hanna Meyer, Paula Meyer, Max Rosenblum, Jenny Rosenblum, Erich Rosenblum

John Löwenstein, born on 23 Oct. 1886, deported on 8 Nov. 1941 to Minsk, murdered there

Grindelhof 9

John Löwenstein was born in Elmshorn as the fourth child of the married couple Moses Löwenstein and Rosa, née Lippstadt/Lipstadt. His siblings were Karl, born in 1881, Bertha, born in 1883, and Sara, also called Selma, born in 1885. Moses Löwenstein was born on 27 Feb. 1848 in Rehburg, his parents were the merchants Abraham Mattis and Betti Löwenstein. Rosa and he had married on 17 June 1878 in Elmshorn, where he worked as a butcher and livestock trader.

The family was not considered particularly religious, so that the devout Jews from Elmshorn did not shop in their store – the meat was not kosher slaughtered and consumption was therefore not permitted to faithful Jews. Nevertheless, Moses sent his children to the Jewish school in the city. When it was to be closed in 1890 and converted into a religious school, he protested against this plan, but was not successful. In the end, his children were the only students attending and, according to school reports, their achievements were anything but brilliant.

Like his father in the [Franco-Prussian] War of 1870/71, John Löwenstein risked his life as a soldier for Germany in the First World War. He survived and received a place on a commemorative plaque for Jewish soldiers hung up at the synagogue in Elmshorn. There the war participants of the Jewish Community were depicted with photographs, an unusual format. The synagogue was destroyed during the night of the November Pogrom from 9 to 10 Nov. 1938, along with the commemorative plaque, of which only vague illustrations still exist, so that none of the photographs could be clearly assigned.

While John’s professional career is hardly traceable, his brother Karl was active in 1923 like his father as a butcher in Elmshorn. At that time, Moses lived at Peterstrasse 27, Karl at Peterstrasse 29.

Moses Löwenstein died of a stroke on 17 Oct. 1924, at the age of 76.

Probably in the course of the 1920s, John Löwenstein moved away from Elmshorn, first to Rendsburg and then to Hamburg. There he earned his money as a worker and domestic servant, initially moving in as a subtenant of the Goldschmidt family at Rappstrasse 6, in the following years to Grindelhof 9 with Max Rosenblum. After 1929, John Löwenstein was listed as "destitute” in the Jewish religious tax (Kultussteuer) card file of the Jewish Community.

Since Jan. 1933, he also suffered from the Nazi persecution measures and had to wear the "Jews’ star” ("Judenstern”) starting on 19 Sept. 1941. Only a short time later, he received the deportation order for 8 Nov. 1941. He was deported to the Minsk Ghetto, where all traces of him disappear. At the end of the war, he was declared dead as of 8 May 1945.

His brother Karl, who at that time lived in a nursing home on Sandberg in Elmshorn, and his sister Selma, married name Levi, were also deported by the Nazis. On 6 Dec. 1941, both had to board a deportation train in Kiel headed for Riga, which was combined with a Hamburg transport.

For John Löwenstein, a Stolperstein is also located at Peterstrasse 29 in Elmshorn, next to the Stolpersteine for his siblings Karl Löwenstein and Selma Levi, née Löwenstein.

Translator: Erwin Fink
Kindly supported by the Hermann Reemtsma Stiftung, Hamburg.

© Anne Lena Meyer

Quellen: 1; 5; digitales Archiv ITS Bad Arolsen, Teilbestand:, Dokument ID 11197721 Transportlisten Gestapo; Kirschninck: Juden, S. 165–174; Kirschninck: Löwenstein; Telefongespräch mit Harald Kirschninck am 12.2.2015; Geburtsurkunden für Sara und John Löwenstein, Adressbücher der Stadt Elmshorn/Stadtarchiv Elmshorn, über Jürgen Wohlenberg, E-Mails vom 13.2 und 16.2.2015.
Zur Nummerierung häufig genutzter Quellen siehe Link "Recherche und Quellen".

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