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Already layed Stumbling Stones

Bertha Kleve (née Schlesinger) * 1889

Martin-Luther-King-Platz 3 (Eimsbüttel, Rotherbaum)

JG. 1889

further stumbling stones in Martin-Luther-King-Platz 3:
Margarethe Altmann, Bela Anschlawski, Esther Ascher, Hannelore Ascher, Ellen Ingrid Berger, Hanni Bernstein, Karl Heinz Bloch, Hildegard Cohen, Nathan Dan Croner, Heinz Dessau, Zita Feldmann, Jacob Fertig, Hans Frost, Alice Gramm, Else Grunert, Julius Hamburger, Oskar Helle, Julius Hermannsen, Rebecca Hermannsen, Elchanan Jarecki, Peter Kopf, Erwin Kopf, Manfred Krauthamer, John Löw, Gerda Polak, Inge Polak, Erich Rosenberg, Mirjam Rothschild, Regine Rothschild, Rafael von der Walde

Alma Grellert, née Schlesinger, born on 12 Oct. 1885 in Witten; deported on 25 Oct. 1941 to Lodz

Wrangelstrasse 10

Bertha Kleve, née Schlesinger, born on 14 Dec. 1889 in Witten, deported on 11 July 1942 to Auschwitz

Martin-Luther-King-Platz 3, Rotherbaum

Alma Grellert was a native of Witten. Witten received its town charter in 1823, became a city independent of a district administration in 1899, and belonged to the Prussian Province of Westphalia. The city is located in the area where the lower Sauerland region transitions into the hill country of the Niederbergische Land between the major cities of Dortmund, Bochum, and Hagen. The year 1885, Alma’s year of birth, saw the laying of the foundation stone of a synagogue in Witten. In that year, Witten had 420 Jewish inhabitants and a total population of close to 25,000.

Alma Grellert’s parents were Isaac and Friederike Schlesinger, née Mildenberg. Alma had at least three siblings: the older brothers Robert (born in 1880) and Paul (born in 1882) and the younger sister Bertha (born in 1889). In Witten, the family first lived on Kampstrasse and on Kirchstrasse and then, after the daughters were born, at Augustastrasse 82, later at Oststrasse 5.

After getting married, Alma Schlesinger’s name was Alma Grellert. By the time she went to Hamburg, she was probably divorced already. Perhaps she had come to Hamburg because her sister Bertha (Betty) resided there, living in a solidly middle-class marriage. According to the entry in the Jewish religious tax (Kultussteuer) file card, she joined the Hamburg Jewish Community on 5 June 1934. The addresses entered on the card are Rappstrasse 10, Grindelhof 19, then, in 1935, Lübeckerstrasse 43 on the third floor, Mühlendamm 44, Grindelberg 84, and Belowdamm 10 on the fourth floor. She seems to have been a subtenant throughout. From the address at Grindelberg 84, Alma Grellert wrote a letter to the City of Witten in 1938 concerning the mandatory assumption of the compulsory first name of Sara, for which those affected had to apply themselves. On 5 Dec. 1938, the marginal note regarding the compulsory name of Sara was added to the entry in the register of births. At the time of the national census in 1939, she lived as a subtenant with Garcia (see entry on Rosa Garcia) on Wrangelstrasse (called Belowdamm during the Nazi period), from where she was eventually deported. On the deportation list, she her occupation was entered as that of a commercial clerk.

In June 1917, her sister, Bertha (Betty) Schlesinger, was married in Hamburg to Max Kleve (actually, Samson Moses Kleve), who was born the same year as his wife. Incidentally, Max Kleve had had his first name changed officially. In Aug. of 1917, the Hamburg Senate approved the name change. Max was born in Hamburg-Rotherbaum at Durchschnitt 57 on the fourth floor. His parents were Adolph and Mathilde Kleve, née Heckscher. Max and Betty had one daughter, Margot (born in 1918), who was married and moved to Essen in Dec. 1937. Along with her first husband, Walter Kraus (born in 1904), Margot emigrated via the Netherlands to Australia after her husband had been released from the Dachau concentration camp, where he had been detained in 1938. Margot later got a divorce and in 1946, she moved to the USA, getting married there a second time. The Kleve family lived at Eppendorfer Baum 10 and 26. From about 1913 onward, Max Kleve had operated a flower store at Eppendorfer Landstrasse 4, which was sold at the end of the 1920s. Afterward, he opened two other flower stores, in Winterhude and Altona. Since 1929, the Kleves ran a realtor’s business for houses and apartments at Eppendorfer Baum 10, an enterprise in which Bertha Kleve became involved as well. In the Nazi period, business became very difficult, and starting in 1937, Jews were deprived of the right to deal in real estate. As a result, Bertha was allowed to broker rooms only. Max Kleve, who suffered very much under the persecution measures, died in Oct. 1938. For Bertha Kleve, a Stolperstein is located at Martin-Luther-King-Platz 3. On 11 July 1942, she was deported to Auschwitz from the address at Papendamm 3, where she lived under the most difficult conditions in the "Jews’ house” ("Judenhaus”) after being forced to give up her apartment in Eppendorf. Just like her fellow sufferers from Hamburg, she did not survive the deportation to Auschwitz.

On 15 Apr. 1942, Alma and Bertha’s brother Robert was taken from Frankfurt to the Theresienstadt Ghetto, where he died on 4 July 1944. Their brother Paul was deported from Gelsenkirchen and probably murdered in the Majdanek/Lublin extermination camp. The entry in the Memorial Book of the German Federal Archives indicates that he was deported from Drancy on 4 Mar. 1943, which would mean that he had fled to France beforehand.

Translator: Erwin Fink

Kindly supported by the Hermann Reemtsma Stiftung, Hamburg.

© Susanne Lohmeyer

Quellen: 1; 4; 5; StaH 332-5 Standesämter, 9899 und 1322/1938; StaH 332-5, 9044 und 101/1889; StaH 351-11 AfW, 42451; StaH 522-1 Jüdische Gemeinden 992e2 Band 3 Deportationsliste; HAB II 1926 und 1941; Stadtarchiv Witten Geburtsregister; Martina Kliner-Lintzen und Siegfried Papa, "… vergessen kann man das nicht", S. 63, 119, 240f.
Zur Nummerierung häufig genutzter Quellen siehe Link "Recherche und Quellen".

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