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Marcus Braunschweiger * 1880
Hegestieg 1 (Hamburg-Nord, Eppendorf)
Ella Braunschweiger, neé Warschawski, born 3 July 1891 in Strzyzew/Deutschdorf, Ostrowo district, deported to Lodz on 25 Oct. 1941, deported from there to Chelmno on 11 Sep. 1942
Marcus Braunschweiger, born 30 Mar. 1880 in Burghaun/Hünfeld, deported to Lodz on 25 Oct. 1941, died there on 6 Nov. 1941
Lieselotte Braunschweiger, geb. 18. Aug. 1923 in Hamburg, deported to Lodz on 25 Oct 1941, deported from there to Chelmno on 15 July 1944
Marcus Braunschweiger was the fifth child and the first son of Levi (Löb) Braunschweiger and his wife Julie, neé Stern. He and his four older sisters were born in Burghaun in the region Hünfelder Land between Fulda and Bad Hersfeld.
Having just turned nineteen, Marcus Braunschweiger left his home and moved after a short stop in Hagen/ Westphalia to Hamburg-Borgfelde to Brekelbaumspark 16. It is not knwon when he met and married his wife Ella. She was the daughter of Jacob and Henriette Warschawski, neé Moskiewicz and came from Ostrowo (Deutschdorf). The area surrounding the town Ostrów Wielkopolski had been part of the Prussian province of Posen in the years 1815 to 1887. In 1918 there was an uprising of the Polish majority of the region’s inhabitants against the German rule. As a result Ostrowo came under Polish control.
Ella and Marcus Braunschweiger’s son Gert was born in 1922. One year later the daughter Lieselotte was born. Marcus Braunschweiger earned the family’s living as a travelling salesman for the company M. Wiener that produced and sold paints and varnishes. The family was never rich, but they were always able to pay their taxes to the community, however sometimes had to arrange deferred payments. Since 1912 Marcus Braunschweiger was member of the Jewish Community of Hamburg and of the Neue Dammtor Synagoge.
In 1935 the family was hit by a terrible misfortune: on 21 May son Gert got hit by a lorry and was severely injured. The wounds got infected with gas gangrene bacteria and died two days later at the hospital St. Georg.
The financial situation of the family also deteriorated. Since 11 Nov. 1938 Markus Braunschweiger did not have an income any more because the company had been "aryanised” and had to dismiss all Jewish employees. In order to assure the family’s livelihood Markus and his wife began providing kosher lunch. After the November Pogrom in 1938 they applied for emigration to the Netherlands for their daughter Lieselotte. Since they were destitute they did not see a chance to emigrate themselves. Lieselotte was fifteen years at the time and attended the Israelitic secondary school (Israelitische Toechterschule). When emigration plans for her failed she began an apprenticeship at the Jewish professional school for tailors at Heimhuder Straße 70.
On 25 Apr. 1941 an anonymous postcard reached the Gestapo at Stadthausbrücke 3. Written with a pencil in scrawly handwriting it stated: "Watch Mrs. Strauß, Werderstraße 65 and when she comes home in the evenings.” One month later on 27 May at 8 am. Kriminaloberassistent Götze and Kriminalsekretär Kühn from the Jewish Affairs Department (Judenreferat) executed a house search of Berta Strauß’ flat. They found a bottle of oil, a pound of green coffee, a bag with three pounds of lentils, and a bag with one pound of onions. After "initial denial [she admitted] to having purchased these things by clandestine trade.” She had bought the oil from Richard Rosenstern (see there) and the coffee from Marcus Braunschweiger. Berta Strauß was arrested.
On 28 May 1941 Marcus Braunschweiger was arrested, too. He had to stay in police custody for two days. At the interrogation he stated for the record that "my sister Paula Braunschweiger gave me … a pound of green coffee as a present in September 1940. I had been helping her in Cologne to prepare the emigration to America and therefore she thanked me with the coffee. I did not want to drink the coffee myself since I cannot afford such a luxury myself. I am providing a Jewish lunch. The Jewish women Strauß came twice for this lunch, approximately two weeks ago. In a conversation she asked me whether I had coffee for her. I replied that I had a pound of green coffee and she could have it, but I wanted 30 Reichsmark for it. She agreed to this and the purchase was settled.” Also at the Braunschweigers’ apartment a house search was conducted in order to find "hoarded goods”. After the search Kriminalsekretär Kühn recorded in the file: "the household gives a quite poor impression”. He did not find anything incriminating.
On 16 September 1941 Marcus Braunschweiger was sentenced to three weeks in prison. He was accused of "infringement of the act of price maintenance for foreign goods – Auslandswarenpreis RGB 1 S. 881”. On 18 Sep. 1941 his lawyer, "consultant” Edgar Fels appealed for clemency and asked for adjournment of the sentence or for conversion into a small monetary penalty due to the difficult economic situation.
In the course of the investigation the court sentenced Marcus Braunschweiger on 14 Oct. 1941 to 20 Reichsmark or four days in prison "for not stating the first name Israel in the telephone register”. Eleven days later on 25 Oct. 1941 the family was deported to Lodz. Marcus Braunschweiger died there already twelve days later. One year later his wife Ella died, too. Their daughter Lieselotte survived the ghetto for three years and was deported to the extermination camp Chelmno on 15 July 1944.
Berta Strauß received her order for deportation to Lodz on 25 October 1941.
Translator: Paula Antonella Oppermann
Kindly supported by the Hermann Reemtsma Stiftung, Hamburg.
© Maria Koser
Quellen: 2; 4; 8; StaH 314-15 OFP, Fvg 5693; StaH 552-1, Jüd. Gemeinden, 992e2 Band 1; StaH 213-11 Staatsanwaltschaft Landgericht – Strafsachen, 6463/42; StaH 213-8 Staatsanwaltschaft Oberlandesgericht- Verwaltung, Abl. 2 451a, E1, 1c; StaH 352-5 Todesanzeige Sta. 1a Nr. 823 1935 (Gert Braunschweiger); StaH 741-4 S 11837, Hamburger Fremdenblatt vom 22.5.1935, S. 601; AB 1933; Sternberg- Siebert, Jüdisches Leben, 2008; Recherche und Auskunft Frau E. Sternberg-Siebert vom 27.10., 23.11., 24.11. und 30.11.2010; Bajohr, "Arisierung", 1997; Wikipedia http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Burghaun, eingesehen am 24.7.2009.
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