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Hermann Moritz * 1884
Dillstraße 4 (Eimsbüttel, Rotherbaum)
Hermann Moritz, born on 20 Jan. 1884 in Mainz, deported to Theresienstadt on 19 July 1942, further deported to Auschwitz on 12 Oct. 1944, murdered
Minka Moritz, née Bauer, born on 1 Jan. 1889 in Hamburg, deported to Theresienstadt on 19 July 1942, further deported to Auschwitz on 12 Oct. 1944, murdered
On 20 Jan. 1884, Hermann Moritz was born in Mainz as the oldest son of a Jewish couple. His father Leo Moritz, also born in Mainz on 18 Oct. 1853, had worked as a merchant. His mother Esther Moritz, née Birnbaum, was born on 14 July 1861.
Hermann had a younger brother and a younger sister. His sister Regine Moritz, born on 1 May 1885, died on 9 June 1889 at the age of four for unknown reasons. Four years after her death, brother Markus was born on 2 Mar. 1893. Nothing is known about the childhood, youth, and education of Hermann and Markus.
At the age of 38, on 3 June 1931, Markus Moritz married 26-year-old Helena Moritz, née Goldmann, who was born in Mainz on 25 June 1905. Two years after the death of his father Leo Moritz on 22 Nov. 1936 in Mainz, Markus emigrated to France. It is not known whether his wife accompanied him. In any case, Helena Moritz was staying with her brother-in-law Hermann Moritz and his family at Dillstrasse 15 from 23 Apr. 1940 to 30 Apr. 1940. Finally, the couple emigrated to the USA together. The exact date of their departure is not known.
Hermann Moritz also decided not to stay in his hometown of Mainz and moved to Hamburg between 1920 and 1923, where he got married on 15 May 1923. From 1925 to 1934, he is listed in the Hamburg directory as a merchant at Heinrich-Barth-Strasse 3. His wife Minka, née Bauer, was born on 1 Jan. 1889 in Hamburg. Her father Jacob Bauer had lived in Hamburg from 25 June 1854 to 20 Dec. 1933 and worked as a fashion accessories, dry goods, and toy salesman. Her mother Bertha Bauer, née Cohn, had been born in Hamburg on 17 Mar. 1857. She died in Hamburg about two years after her husband Jacob Bauer, on 10 Feb. 1935. The only information known about Minka’s childhood and youth is that she had siblings, of which three sisters died as infants and one brother in 1917. Two survived (see below). As a young woman, Minka Bauer learned the profession of a clerk (office employee).
Hermann and Minka Moritz lived at Dillstrasse 4 for a while in 1935, but in the meantime, the couple had had their son Kurt on 19 June 1924. Hermann Moritz worked from 1928 to 1931 as an employee at Gotthold & Co., part of which belonged to Minka’s uncle Hermann Bauer. He earned 200 RM (reichsmark) per month there. Maybe because of the economic crisis, he became unemployed and was dependent on casual work until he got a permanent position again on 30 Apr. 1934.
His son Kurt attended the nearby Jewish Talmud Tora School starting about 1930. Hermann Moritz and his family belonged to the Jewish Community of Hamburg, Hermann Moritz joined the Synagogue Association (Synagogenverband) in 1937, i.e., he considered himself to be one of the orthodox Jews of the Community.
After the November Pogrom in 1938, Hermann and Minka Moritz decided to send then 14-year-old Kurt to stay with his uncle Manfred Bauer and his wife in Brussels. This meant not only a change of school for the student, but also separation from his parents. Uncle Manfred had lived in Belgium since Nov. 1937. From 20 Dec. 1938, Kurt subsequently resided with him and his wife Aenne, née Rosemann, born on 13 Nov. 1898 in Rozmiatow (Poland). The couple had two biological sons: Werner, born on 25 Apr. 1922 and Gustav, born on 18 Jan. 1924.
Until the beginning of the Second World War, postal traffic between the German Reich and Belgium was still possible. Thus, Hermann Moritz was still able to send his son Kurt a large parcel on 18 Jan. 1939, containing a briefcase, a radio play and headphones, several books, a swimming belt, a pair of shoes, a velvet bag with a prayer coat, but also a duvet, a pillow, three towels, two sheets, two duvet covers.
By then, Kurt attended the community school in the Brussels suburb of Scherbeck/Rue des Ecoles. It was not a "secondary school” and did not offer foreign languages like the Talmud Tora School. Therefore, Kurt could not take the high school graduation exam (Abitur).
On 10 May 1939, the German invasion of the Netherlands, Belgium, and Luxembourg began. Kurt managed to escape to Britain on 15 May 1940. Once there, he was interned because of his German nationality and released a year later, in Sept. 1941. In this foreign country, 17-year-old Kurt Moritz henceforth had to cope with life on his own. He began working in an office as an errand boy, as an unskilled assistant to an electrician, and then for a while as a sales assistant, but any training was out of the question.
While Kurt was still settling in with his uncle in Brussels in 1939, Hermann and Minka Moritz had to move to a "Jews’ house” ("Judenhaus”) at Dillstrasse 15, where they resided on the third floor. They lived in difficult economic circumstances. Minka, a trained clerk, had worked as a business assistant in the very end.
In the course of the November Pogrom in 1938, Hermann Moritz had lost his job. He was also arrested and sent to the Sachsenhausen concentration camp. Hermann Moritz was no longer able to work as a businessman, and at times, he earned his living as an employee of the Jewish Religious Organization (Jüdischer Religionsverband) of Hamburg, as the Jewish Community had to call itself by then. After his release from the concentration camp, he worked from his four-room apartment at Dillstrasse 15 as a shoemaker. He carried out shoe repairs at home and then gave them to a shoemaker, from whom he received and delivered shoes as well.
Hermann and Minka Moritz were deported to the Theresienstadt Ghetto on 19 July 1942 on Transport no. 508-VI/2.
On 12 Oct. 1944, the couple was further deported on Transport Eq-1169 from Theresienstadt to the Auschwitz extermination camp. They were probably murdered immediately after their arrival.
Their son Kurt Moritz survived in Britain. He kept his head above water with unskilled work even after the end of the war and finally became a taxi driver in 1957. He was never able to catch up on his training. Kurt Robert Marcus Moritz died on 13 Mar. 1984 in Salford, England.
Kurt’s uncle Manfred Bauer, with whom he had lived in Brussels, was interned in the Saint Cyprien internment camp on 10/15 May 1940. In 1943, he was transferred to the Drancy collection camp in France, from where he was deported to the Majdanek extermination camp on 4 Mar. 1943. There he was murdered. No details are known concerning the whereabouts of his wife and his two sons.
Markus and Helena Moritz, who had emigrated to the USA in time, last lived in Forest Hills, New York. Markus Moritz died on 24 Oct. 1965 at the age of 72.
The following details are known about Minka Moritz’ siblings Hermann, Dora, and her niece Margot Betty Salig:
Her brother Hermann (later Zwi Naftali) Bauer, born on 17 Mar. 1885 in Hamburg, had subsequently worked as an employee of the Bauer & Co. banking and exchange business. On 20 Aug. 1920, he married Jettchen, née Jacobson, born on 9 Dec. 1894 in Hamburg. With her, he had four children overall: Sara, born on 12 Apr. 1922; Wolfgang, born on 19 May 1926; Jacob, born on 15 Sept. 1934; and Miriam, born on 28 July 1927. The family emigrated to Palestine at the end of 1935.
Minka’s sister Dora and two other sisters died before 1933, as did her brother Gustav Bauer, born on 30 Apr. 1898, at the age of 19; he was buried in the Jewish Cemetery on Ilandkoppel.
Minka’s sister Paula, born on 17 Oct. 1886 in Hamburg, had married the tailor Louis Leiser Levy, born on 12 Nov. 1886 in Margonin, Kolmar District (today in Poland) and with him, she had a daughter, Margot Betty Salig, née Levy, born on 10 June 1915 in Hamburg. Paula died in Hamburg at the age of 47 on 22 July 1933, but her daughter survived. She passed away at the age of 76 years on 19 Aug. 1991 in New York.
Translator: Erwin Fink
Kindly supported by the Hermann Reemtsma Stiftung, Hamburg.
Stand: September 2020
© Ronya- Melisa Kizildemir
Quellen: 1; 4; 5; 7; 8; Stadtarchiv Mainz: Datenbank "Mainzer Juden 1933-1945", Az. 471210, Tgb. Nr. 15923/18; Stadtarchiv Mainz: Geburtsregister. Jahresspanne: 1885 Band 2, Registernummer 654; Stadtarchiv Mainz: Geburtsregister. Jahresspanne 1893 Band 1, Registernummer 380; Stadtarchiv Mainz: Sterberegister 1889, Band 2. Registernummer 713, Laufende Nummer 906; Stadtarchiv Mainz: Mainzer Familienregister, Familiennummer: 52605; Stadtarchiv Mainz: Sterberegister. Jahresspanne 1936 Band 3, Registernummer 1498, Laufende Nummer 1056; Stadtarchiv Mainz: Auswanderung Mainzer Juden 1933-1939. Signatur: NL Opp./ 49, 6; Hessisches Hauptstaatsarchiv; Wiesbaden, Deutschland: Signatur 9425, Re-gisternummer 413; New York, Passagierlisten,1820-1957. Helena Sara Goldmann Moritz: Jahr 1941, Ankunftsort New York/ New York, Seriennummer des Microfilms: T 715, 1897-1957 via ancestry.com; StaH 314-15 OFP, Fvg 7555; StaH 741-1 Signatur K 244; StaH 351-11 AfW, 5098 Bauer, Hermann; StaH 351-11 AfW, 46659 Moritz, Kurt; StaH 332-5 Personenstandsunterlagen (Geburts- und Sterbeurkunden der Familie Moritz); StaH 332-8 Meldewesen, Band 2, Photoarchiv K 4203; Hamburger Adressbücher 1889-1942; Anna Hajkova: Ältere deutsche Jüdinnen und Juden im Ghetto Theresienstadt, in "Deutsche Jüdinnen und Juden in Ghettos und Lagern (1941-1945)" hrsg. Beate Meyer, S. 201 ff.
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