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Erika Lorenz * 1916
Marienthaler Straße 126 (Hamburg-Mitte, Hamm)
Adolf Lorenz, born on 28 Apr. 1877, deported on 8 Nov. 1941 to Minsk
Erika Lorenz, born on 27 June 1916, deported on 8 Nov. 1941 to Minsk
Franziska Lorenz, née Müller, born on 3 May 1877, deported on 8 Nov. 1941 to Minsk
Marienthaler Strasse 124 (Marienthaler Strasse 126)
"Whatever you are able to accomplish in this matter, I will accept it. It is sad money, …” Ludwig Lorenz wrote to the Restitution Office (Amt für Wiedergutmachung) on 28 May 1965.
His father Adolf Lorenz came from Opitten, District of Preussisch Holland (today Wopity in the Paslek District in Poland), his mother from Eisenach. He was a merchant. In Oct. 1912, they came to Hamburg with their two children Henny, born on 13 May 1901 in Berlin, and Ludwig, born on 7 June 1911 in Charlottenburg, and joined the local Jewish Community. Erika was born in the middle of the First World War, on 27 June 1916. Father Adolf fought in World War I as a non-commissioned infantry officer from 1914 to 1918 and returned with a war disability, though he continued to be fit for work and was self-employed until 1930. The Lorenz family augmented their income by renting out rooms to subtenants.
Daughter Henny grew up to become a versatile woman, able to cope very well with life. She had already completed several years of elementary school by the time she came to Hamburg. She attended the "Privatschule Frl. Osthoff” – a private girls’ school at Peterskampweg 23 – until taking the final exams there. In this way, she obtained the qualification to attend a business school. Until 1917, she was "at Berlitz.” She started her occupational career with the Dresdner Bank. She married Max Gabel, a salaried employee and motor vehicle driver of the Gabels, a family with many branches living at Wendenstrasse 337, where they operated a business for oils and fats. Max Gabel was born in Hamburg on 27 Mar. 1899. The two resided at Marienthaler Strasse 127. On 6 Nov. 1924, they had a son, Gerhard. Later, the marriage ended in divorce. All of the members of the Gabel family emigrated.
Henny was employed as a sales assistant for the Karstadt department store, obtained a business license to work as a house and estate superintendent, became a private secretary for the Fülleborn law firm, and married Erwin Broder, one year her junior, in 1932.
From 1930 until 1936, Adolf Lorenz worked as a sales representative for the Delft Company, a "special plant for quality cocoa.”
His son Ludwig, ten years younger than Henny, attended high school up to obtaining the intermediate secondary school certificate (mittlere Reife), and then did an apprenticeship with the Laco textiles company starting in Oct. 1926. In 1934, he was scheduled to take over the company’s representation in Brazil, but a general manager prevented Ludwig from departing on the grounds that a Jew ought not to represent any German company abroad.
Since the early 1930s, Ludwig was engaged to a non-Jewish woman. In 1936, the Gestapo prosecuted and indicted both for "racial defilement” ("Rassenschande”). After an eight-hour interrogation, Ludwig decided that he did not want to have anything to do with the Gestapo anymore. Since his fiancée had had a nervous breakdown, they were granted a conditional discharge up to the trial date, using this interval to flee to Amsterdam, without notifying the parents. In the Netherlands, the refugee committee did not recognize "racial defilement” as a cause of flight, which meant they received no support and had a hard time getting by. They got married in Belgium on 7 Nov. 1936 and reached Brazil in Apr. 1937. In July of that year, their daughter was born in Rio de Janeiro. Later, Ludwig Lorenz worked as a Minimax [fire extinguishers] representative for 16 years. The couple separated in 1958; the wife returned to Germany on her own in 1963. There, she had left her dowry behind with her parents-in-law in 1936. She found nothing and nobody, not even their residential building; it had been destroyed in the firestorm connected to the air raids in 1943.
In 1936, Henny and Erwin Broder travelled with her son Gerhard to Uruguay on a tourist visa. This meant that they had to leave their household furnishings behind. When the visa expired in Apr. 1936, they made their way to Argentina and lived in Buenos Aires for 60 years, passing away on two consecutive days in 1996.
In 1933, Adolf Lorenz’ daughter Erika had left the Realschule [a practice-oriented secondary school up to grade 10] at Lübeckertorfeld in the fourth year (grade 8). She had difficulties in school, for various reasons. Instead of doing an apprenticeship, she worked as a children’s nurse in a sanatorium for Jewish children in Wyk auf Föhr (Wyk on the Island of Föhr), and afterward as a caregiver in the Jewish retirement home in Altona at Grünestrasse 5, where she also resided. Erika made efforts to emigrate as well.
In mid-1936, Adolf Lorenz lost his modest income as a sales representative. The children had left the home, subtenants Bettelheim and Lefébre had moved out as well; no information exists about new subtenants. In the fall of 1936, Adolf and Franziska Lorenz moved to Langereihe 11 and from there to Rutschbahn 25 on the ground floor, living from their savings, renting out a room, and from Adolf Lorenz’ work as an excavator as of 8 Mar. 1938. They pressed on with their emigration plans to Argentina, even receiving the tax clearance certificates (Unbedenklichkeitsbescheinigungen), but then the chance to emigrate was dashed.
In 1939, Adolf Lorenz applied for welfare assistance. He was enlisted for compulsory labor duties in constructing the German Reich autobahn in Tangendorf. In order to be able to perform this labor, he had to apply separately for payment of a medical aid, a hernia truss, which he had been forced to wear since the war. He was granted the payment. However, by that time, Jews were no longer permitted to participate in building the autobahn. Thus, he was sent to Tiefstack for daily remuneration of 20 pfennigs and then onward to the Wulsdorf estate. At this point, the remuneration had been doubled and the travel allowance for the weekly transit pass had been raised to 2.70 RM (reichsmark). In the summer of 1939, he was compelled to work, with work clothes and a shovel or spade he had to buy himself, on Moorredder in Wilhelmsburg for five days. With this, welfare assistance was terminated.
In 1940, he performed compulsory labor in Otterndorf from April to October, probably digging peat. For two further months, he worked in a different field for gross wages of 30 RM.
Together with their daughter Erika, Adolf and Franziska Lorenz were deported to the Minsk Ghetto on 8 Nov. 1941. On the transport list, the civilian occupation indicated for Adolf Lorenz is "traveling salesman” ("Reisender”), none for Franziska.
Translator: Erwin Fink
Kindly supported by the Hermann Reemtsma Stiftung, Hamburg.
Stand: March 2017
© Hildegard Thevs
Quellen: 1; 4; 5; StaH, 522-1, Jüdische Gemeinden, o. Sign. Mitgliederzählung der DIGH 1928; 390 Wählerverzeichnis 1930; 391 Mitgliederliste 1935; 992 e 2 Deportationslisten Bd. 2; BA Bln., Volkszählung 1939; HA 1933 und 1938; AfW 070611.
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