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Already layed Stumbling Stones
Camilla Fuchs * 1886
Dammtorstraße 28 (Oper) (Hamburg-Mitte, Neustadt)
Flucht in den Tod 24.10.1941
further stumbling stones in Dammtorstraße 28 (Oper):
Gustav Brecher, Dr. Max Fraenkel, Hermann Frehse, Mauritz Kapper, Jacob Kaufmann, Ottilie Metzger-Lattermann, Kurt Abraham Salnik, Joseph Schmidt, Magda Spiegel, Viktor Ullmann, Bruno Wolf
Thekla Daltrop, née Fuchs, born 5/28/1883 in Prague, suicide on 10/24/1941 in Hamburg
Camilla Fuchs, born 2/1/1886 in Prague, suicide on 10/24/194 1 in Hamburg
Dammtorstrasse 28 (opera house)
On October 24, 1941, Josef Polack, the janitor of the former Hertz-Joseph-Levy-Stift, showed up at the 24th police precinct to report the deaths of the sisters Thekla Daltrop and Camilla Fuchs from the house across the street at Grossneumarkt 56A. As he had not seen the two ladies the past few days and there was no reaction when he knocked on their door, he had had a neighborhood locksmith open it forcibly.
In the kitchen, he found Thekla and Camilla dead, seated in wicker chairs. They had disconnected the hose from the gas stove and died from carbon monoxide poisoning. The reason for their suicide was pinned to the kitchen buffet, together with other documents: the "evacuation orders” no. 416 and no. 1205.
When Thekla and Camilla were born in Prague into the child-rich Jewish family of Samuel (born 1827) and Helene (Lotti) Fuchs, née Klemperer (born 1840), their homeland belonged to the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Their father came from Hořice (Horitz/Horschitz) in eastern Bohemia (now Czech Republic), where the two eldest children, Siegfried (born 1863) and Anna (born 1865) were born. Late in 1865, the Fuchs’ moved to Prague, the hometown of their mother, where the children Julie (1866), Pauline (1867), Rudolf (1870), Ernst (1871) Hugo (1872), Arthur (1874) Karl (1876), Leopold (1878), Josef (1879) and Eduard (1882) were born. Thekla and Camilla followed as the youngest of fourteen kids. According to the residence registry of the City of Prague, their father Samuel was a door-to-door peddler, his wife Helene is said to have run a poultry shop.
It is not known when Thekla and Camilla, who were Austrian citizens, left Prague. From 1914, Thekla lived at Kohlhöfen 17 in Hamburg-Neustadt and made her living as a salesgirl. She moved to Dammtorstrasse 21, and, in 1925, to Brandsende 21/23 in the Altstadt district. On October 27, 1927, aged 44, she married Hermann Daltrop (born 2/28/1879), a broker from a Jewish family from Gütersloh in Westphalia, who had moved to Harburg in 1883 (cf. Stolpersteine in Hamburg-Harburg about the family Else, Fritz and Theodor Daltrop and Henny Hansen, née Daltrop).
Hermann Daltrop ran an agency for "financing, sales of businesses and procurement of shareholders” at the "Guatemala Haus” in Gerhofstrasse 3-5; the childless couple lived at Münstermannsweg 6, later at Rungestieg 3 in Hamburg-Barmbek. Hermann Daltrop died on March 12, 1935; his widow Thekla left Barmbek and moved to the "Rosenhof” in Kaiser-Wilhelm-Strasse 23–31. On her culture tax card from the Jewish Community, an official in November 1940 wrote: "completely penniless.”
Her sister Camilla remained single and lived at Durchschnitt 13 in the Grindel quarter. She was a soprano and was discharged from the choir of the Hamburg Stadttheater, the city opera house, in 1931. In 1934, one year after the Nazis’ rise to power, the Stadttheater was renamed Hamburgische Staatsoper. All Jewish members of the company and all other Jewish employees were fired or forcibly retired.
Camilla Fuchs moved from Grindel to Hammer Berg 44 in Hamburg-Hamm. In 1934 she lived as a pensioner at Mittelweg 175; in 1937, she joined her sister Thekla at Kaiser-Wilhelm-Strasse 23–31, from where the two of them moved to the Jewish Hertz-Joseph-Levy-Stift, Grossneumarkt 56.
Camilla Fuchs had a two-room apartment on the fourth floor, Thekla Daltrop a single-room flat in the rear building of the institution. Thekla had acquired German citizenship by her marriage, whereas her sister Camilla was now, following the German occupation of the territories of Bohemia and Moravia, declared a "citizen of the Protectorate” on account of her birthplace, Prague.
On October 21, 1941, the two sisters received their "evacuation orders.” They were to be deported to the "Litzmannstadt” ghetto in Poland on the first transport from Hamburg on October 25. Rather than being deported, Thekla and Camilla chose to die together.
A handwritten note without signature contained their last will in sparse words: "Our final wish: We ask that Frau Simon should not wake over our bodies [Jewish mourning ritual, Hebrew: shiwa]. Then please give the blue bag and the brown hat to Herr Harriel Elias to pass it on to our sister Pauline Eckhard. The money for the funeral has been paid to Ohlsdorf [cemetery]. And then, I would like to keep my wedding band.”
Thekla Daltrop’s last wish was not fulfilled: her wedding band was confiscated to the benefit of the German Reich, along with the remaining possessions of the two sisters which they had to deliver already before.
Their elder sister Pauline Eckhard (born 5/18/1867) had, after finishing elementary school, taken vocal studies and then been engaged as a chorister at the German Theater in Prague. On December 12, 1897, she married Karl/Charles Eckhard (born 1874 in New York), a hotel porter and interpreter. Their marriage ended in an early divorce. Pauline’s only son Egon (born 5/19/1899) died of lung ailments in Italy in March 1935, sequelae of a poison gas injury he had suffered in World War I. From 1912 to 1918, Pauline had also sung at the Hamburg Stadttheater. She lived at the Jewish Lazarus-Gumpel-Stift in Schlachterstrasse 46/47 in the immediate neighborhood of her sisters.
Pauline Eckhard received her "evacuation order” for July 19, 1942 and was to report to the assembly point at the elementary school in Schanzenstrasse 105 a day before the deportation to Theresienstadt. She survived the ghetto and was liberated by Soviet troops on May 8, 1945 and returned to Hamburg. Pauline Eckhard died on December 31, 1958 at the Jewish retirement home at Schäferkampsallee 27.
Translated by Peter Hubschmid
Kindly supported by the Hermann Reemtsma Stiftung, Hamburg.
Stand: May 2020
© Susanne Rosendahl
Quellen: 1; 9; StaH 331-5 Polizeibehörde-Unnatürliche Sterbefälle 3 Akte 1942/331; StaH 331-5 Polizeibehörde-Unnatürliche Sterbefälle 3 Akte 1941/1899; StaH 351-11 AfW 1148 (Eckhard, Pauline); StaH 351-14 Arbeits- und Sozialfürsorge 1128 (Eckhard, Pauline); StaH 332-5 Standesämter 3553 u 719/1927; StaH 332-5 Standesämter 7170 u 380/1935; StaH 332-5 Standesämter 1139 u 388/1941; StaH 522-1 Jüdische Gemeinde Nr. 992 e 2 Band 1; StaH 522-1 Jüdische Gemeinde Nr. 992 e 2 Band 5; AB 1915, 1927, 1931; Narodni archiv, Conscriptions (1850–1914) – Applications for Residence Permit of Prague Police Headquarters in: www.nacr.cz/english/conscriptions.aspx (Zugriff 3.8.2011).
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