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Helene Aberbach (née Lakser) * 1885
Isestraße 43 (Eimsbüttel, Harvestehude)
LODZ / LITZMANNSTADT
Helene Aberbach, née Lakser, born 13.1.1885 in Berlin, emigrated to Czechoslovakia in 1938, deported on 26.10.1941 from Prague to Litzmannstadt ghetto
Helene Aberbach's life was closely connected with that of her brother-in-law Berisch-Bernhard Schwarz and his wife Toni, née Aberbach; both families were Jewish.
Helene had been born as Helene Lakser or Laxer on January 13, 1885 in Berlin, her husband as Israel Meier Aberbach on November 19, 1877 in Bolechow in Galicia, today's Western Ukraine. When Helene gave birth to their first child, daughter Erna, on May 11, 1907, the couple lived in Berlin. Israel Meier adapted his name to his new surroundings and henceforth called himself Max. He held Austrian citizenship, which had also passed to his wife Helene and later to their children upon their marriage. We know nothing about Helene Lakser's family of origin.
Max Aberbach had a sister, Taube-Rechel, born Nov. 25, 1883 like her brother in Bolechow, who lived with her husband Berisch Schwarz, born April 8, 1877 in Samoloskowce in Galicia, also in Vienna at the beginning of the 20th century (see www.stolpersteine-hamburg.de). There their first child, son Julius, was born on August 22, 1911. Taube-Rechel and her husband also assimilated, which found its expression in the name changes to Toni and Bernhard Schwarz. Their origins in the Austro-Hungarian monarchy, with Vienna as its center, played a role for them throughout their lives.
Helene Aberbach and her family moved to Hamburg in 1911, where Max Aberbach took over as the new owner of the Otto Trier Nachfolger company, an importer and exporter of corsets and accessories such as whalebone. They hired an apartment at 46 Eppendorfer Landstraße. On April 24, 1912, five years after the birth of daughter Erna, Helene Aberbach gave birth to a son who was given the same name as his cousin, Julius. Until then, Max Aberbach had not been a member of the Jewish community in Hamburg. The date of joining was recorded as April 30, 1912. He parallel joined the Orthodox synagogue association, as did his brother-in-law Berisch-Bernhard Schwarz later.
Max Aberbach moved the headquarters of his company from Stadthausbrücke to Merkurhof, Kaiser-Wilhelm-Straße 89/91, and brought his brother-in-law Berisch-Bernhard Schwarz into the company as an authorized signatory. Still in Vienna, his family had also grown. On September 28, 1912, their daughter Herta was born. Bernhard Schwarz moved to Isestraße 66, so that the brothers-in-law not only worked together, but their families also lived close to each other.
This changed, however, with the First World War (WWI), when Bernhard Schwarz became a soldier and his wife and children moved into a boarding house in Grindelhof. Why Max Aberbach did not also serve in WWI, we do not know. He continued his business and applied for naturalization. On the grounds that he came from Austrian Galicia, was of the Mosaic faith, and had earned his fortune illegally, his application was rejected on August 10, 1916. Presumably Helene and Max Aberbach supported the brother-in-law's family, because Bernhard Schwarz had been taken prisoner of war in Russia in 1915, from which he did not return until 1921. His tax debts to the Jewish community had been continued, but were then forgiven through the mediation of his brother-in-law. After his return, Bernhard Schwarz moved with his family to Husumerstraße 19.
Max and Helene Aberbach lived at Hallerstraße 76 after the end of WWII until they moved to Isestraße 43 in 1933. Their son Julius attended the Oberrealschule in Eppendorf and completed an apprenticeship in the corset industry, during which he also went to England and France. Returning to Hamburg, he joined his father's company. Helene Aberbach had also become active there in the meantime, without being in a formal employment relationship. The business activities of the corset company (Otto Trier Nachfolger) extended from Prague to London.
The daughter Erna Aberbach became an accountant. On December 22, 1931, she married Simon Bogopolsky, a sales representative ten years her senior, born August 20, 1897 in Odessa. As a representative of the Mädler branch at Neuer Wall 10, a leather goods store, he had a disproportionately higher income than his family-in-law, which also enabled him to enjoy more lavish living comforts. He initially lived at Jungfrauenthal 8 and moved to Oderfelderstrasse 7 in 1936.
The first grandchild born to Helene and Max Aberbach was a son in 1932, followed by a daughter in 1935. In the meantime, in 1934, Helene Aberbach's niece Herta Bogopolsky, née Schwarz, had returned from Vienna to join her parents in Hamburg. Her marriage had been divorced. In August 1936, her brother-in-law Simon Bogopolsky hired her in his company. He was remanded in protective custody from February 13, 1937, to March 8, 1937, for foreign exchange offenses, but was released from there to return home.
As a result of the world economic crisis, Max Aberbach's income had been below the taxable limit of the Jewish community from 1932 to 1934. Nevertheless, Max and Helene Aberbach had taken out a life insurance policy with the Nordstern insurance company in 1933 with an insured sum of 5000 RM and a term until 1958. In 1935, a life insurance policy for a sum insured of 3000 RM was added for Max Aberbach and another for 10,000 RM for Helene Aberbach with ISAR Lebensversicherung. There was already a death insurance policy with a term from 1932 to 1963 for 20,000 RM.
After a temporary stay in Vienna in 1933, Julius Aberbach married Edith Kobel, a Jew born in Vienna on July 5, 1914, there on December 6, 1934. She too became active in her father-in-law's company. The marriage remained childless and was divorced in 1938. Julius Aberbach entered into a second marriage with Lotte Deutschmann, also Jewish, born October 11, 1906 in Hamburg.
In 1937, Max Aberbach was still granted an "Aryan" apprentice for his company with the condition that he would be trained by "Aryan" employees. But in that year Max Aberbach and with him his wife Helene, their son Julius and the brother-in-law Berisch-Bernhard Schwarz came under suspicion of preparing their emigration and of wanting to create a livelihood for themselves by "shifting" foreign currency. On February 12 and 13, 1937, first Max and then Julius were arrested. The trial at the Hamburg Regional Court began on October 19, 1937, and ended on January 21, 1938. The offenses had turned out to be less than the prosecution had suspected. Helene Aberbach and her son Julius were acquitted, the co-defendant Max Aberbach was sentenced to one year in prison and a fine of RM 7500, and the co-defendant Bernhard Schwarz was fined RM 1000, taking into account his pre-trial detention.
While Max Aberbach was still imprisoned, Simon and Erna Bogopolsky went abroad with their children on June 3, 1938. They stored their home furnishings, amounting to 10 linear meters, with the forwarding company Gärtner. Since Max Aberbach, like his brother-in-law, was credited with pre-trial detention, he was released from prison in the summer of 1938. He bought back his life insurance and stopped paying premiums to the ISAR insurance company.
Since he no longer saw a livelihood in Hamburg, he and his wife Helene left Germany on October 13, 1938. Their route led via Austria to Czechoslovakia. In 1939 they were expatriated from the German Reich as Austrians.
Max Aberbach died on April 15, 1939 in Senov/Moravian Ostrava. Helene Auerbach received RM 633 from his life insurance policy. Her daughter Erna Bogopolsky dissolved the household that remained in Hamburg; the auction of the apartment furnishings and household effects at the Schoopmann auction house yielded 6124.80 RM. Nothing of this was left for her mother Helene after taxes for Julius, rent debts and medical expenses were paid and the passage costs for Julius and Lotte Aberbach, who emigrated to the USA in June 1939, were paid. The company's assets were also depleted.
Helene Aberbach moved to Prague, where she was registered with the Council of Elders (as the Jewish community under German occupation had to call itself) under No. 119. On October 26, 1941, she was deported on transport No. C-911 to the Lodz/Litzmannstadt ghetto.
Her brother-in-law Berisch-Bernhard and her sister-in-law Toni Schwarz, née Aberbach, (see www.stolpersteine-hamburg.de) had arrived there from Hamburg at the same time. Three years after their separation in Hamburg, they probably saw each other again briefly before her death.
Translation by Beate Meyer
Stand: February 2022
© Hildegard Thevs
Quellen: 1; 4; 5; 8; 9; Hamburger Adressbücher; StaH 213-11, 09651/39, 09917/39; 214-1, 168 (Vermögensverwertungsstelle); 241-II, 26644 (Filmarchiv 741-4, 262); 332-5, 13630-520/1931 (Heiratsregister); 332-7, A III 21, Band 19, A VI 3, 960; 351-11, 3546, 4808; 522-1, 390 (Wählerliste1930); 992 e 2, Bd. 1 (Deportationsliste); Dank an Professor Fritz Neubauer für Hinweise auf Sterbefallregister Lodz: http://szukajwarchiwach.pl/39/278/0/18/1202/str/1/2/15/ntP5qVh00anymNp2qgDJRw/#tabSkany; http://szukajwarchiwach.pl/39/278/0/13.2/957a/skan/full/jvf--DKe_Af2840pvWaDWA
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