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Elfriede Steinfeld * 1875
Menckesallee 9 (Wandsbek, Eilbek)
Elfriede Steinfeld, born on 19 May 1875 in Mönchengladbach, deported on 15 July 1942 to Theresienstadt, died there on 23 Aug. 1943
Elfriede Steinfeld lived together with her brother Albert until his death on 16 Jan. 1938, initially at Menckesallee 9 in Eilbek, then at Neanderstrasse 11 in Hamburg-Neustadt. A second brother, Karl, also lived in Eilbek for a while. The three siblings, children of the Jewish couple Leopold Steinfeld and his wife Sophie, née Matthias, came from today’s Mönchengladbach, which at the time of her birth was still called Gladbach and until 1960 München-Gladbach or M. Gladbach, respectively. Sophie’s parents had moved to town from Erkelenz in 1873. Leopold Steinfeld, born in 1844 in Rinteln on the Weser River, at first operated a clothing warehouse and later a men’s and boys’ clothing store.
Elfriede Steinfeld, born on 19 May 1875, was the oldest of the three children, followed by Karl, born on 13 Oct. 1876, and the late arrival Albert, born on 21 Nov. 1883. In 1893, the family moved to Sophie Steinfeld’s hometown of Krefeld. At the beginning of the twentieth century, the children successively went to Hamburg or, respectively, Hamburg-Wandsbek.
The first one to go to Wandsbek was Karl in 1903; after World War I, Elfriede and Albert followed. They settled in Hamburg. For a short time, Albert Steinfeld was employed as an office worker, before becoming an authorized signatory. In 1931, he started a business of his own, opening an export agency at Hermannstrasse 8. Apparently, Elfriede managed her brother’s household. Both remained unmarried and childless.
In 1927, Karl Steinfeld married Mathilde Kratz, born on 4 July 1878 in Aachen, who lived in Hamburg since 1912. He worked as a decorator and resided as a subtenant at Schellingstrasse 28 in Eilbek, Mathilde Kratz as a subtenant at Annenstrasse 5 in St. Pauli. Her husband moved in with her. On 1 Oct. 1933, they took up residence in Rahlstedt.
At the end of 1937, Albert and Elfriede Steinfeld moved from Eilbek to Neanderstrasse in Hamburg-Neustadt. There, Albert Steinfeld died on 16 Jan. 1938 at the age of 55. He was buried on the Jewish Cemetery in Wandsbek.
Elfriede Steinfeld stayed on Neanderstrasse until 20 Oct. 1939, after which she was admitted to the Martin Brunn-Stift at Frickestrasse 24, a residential home that became a "Jews’ house” ("Judenhaus” ) in 1941. Since her brother’s death, she no longer had an income. Starting in Jan. 1941, she received welfare assistance from the Jewish Community. On one of the first transports to the "ghetto for the elderly” ("Altersgetto”) in Theresienstadt, she was deported from Hamburg. Of the 911 persons deported to Theresienstadt on 15 July 1942, over 10 percent came from Frickestrasse 24. Aged 67, Elfriede Steinfeld was among the younger persons in the transport.
The transport took place before the Hamburgische Elektrizitäts-Werke, the Hamburg electricity company, had been able to make out an electricity bill. The corporation sent the invoice, amounting to only 1.17 RM (reichsmark) along with 72 bills addressed to other deportees to Administrative Office for Jewish Assets” ("Verwaltungsstelle für Judenvermögen”) with the Hamburg-Dammtor Tax and Revenue Authority, which paid them from the assets confiscated to the benefit of the German Reich.
On the next transport to Theresienstadt four days later, Elfriede’s brother Karl and his wife Mathilde were deported as well. They had been forced to leave their home in Rahlstedt in the hands of the Gestapo. Elfriede Steinfeld died in the Theresienstadt Ghetto on 23 Aug. 1943.
Elfriede Steinfeld’s relatives survived in the ghetto. Liberated by the Red Army, they returned to the Rahlstedt apartment in the summer of 1945. The new beginning proved very difficult for the nearly 70-year olds because the apartment furnishings had disappeared and they had no income whatsoever.
Translator: Erwin Fink
Kindly supported by the Hermann Reemtsma Stiftung, Hamburg.
Stand: January 2019
© Hildegard Thevs
Quellen: 1; 4; 5; 7; 9; StaH 314-15 OFP Oberfinanzpräsident 29 (HEW); 332-5 Standesämter 1094-52/1938; 6666-103/1927; 351-11, 3065; Stadtarchiv Mönchengladbach, Geburtsregister, Adressbücher; Erckens, Günter, Juden in Mönchengladbach, Band 1.
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