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Number of pages: 8
Reference number: 1656/3/4/950
Catalogue ID: 105375
Subject: RescuePolishJews in hiding

The authoress had to leave school prematurely in 1934 and became an apprentice in the tailoring trade. However, in 1937 she was, as a Jewess, not admitted to the final examination. Her parents then obtained visa for themselves and her for Cuba. Unfortunately, all the Cuban visas were cancelled, and the boat returned from Antwerp to Hamburg. The parents started to produce uniforms. Their 15 year-old daughter was the first to be transported East, the parents followed in February 1943 when they were taken to Auschwitz. These three perished.

The authoress then married the tailor Martin Deutschkron. She had to do compulsory work at Siemens in Berlin suburbs. When, at the end of January 1943, the Gestapo was about to arrest the couple, both decided to “disappear” and live illegally. Mrs Deutschkron nursed for six months a sick womanwhile Mr Deutschkron managed to obtain a job with a Hungarian as a tailor, he had to sleep on the ironing board. Later, Mrs Deutschkron worked there also. Mr Deutschkron possessed the military papers of a man who had died which bore all the necessary rubber stamps.

A Jew, named Ralf Isaaksohn, denounced the illegal occupation of the Deutschkron couple to the Gestapo. His girlfriend, Stella Kübler-Goldstein tried to trace them after they had left their jobs at the tailor Gomber. They first spent their nights in a shed in Borkheide, then in a house at Berlin Lützowplatz which was bombed. The same happened to a house in Grunewald where they for a time looked after the central heating.

For several months they were again able to do some tailoring and to barter textile articles for food. But there too they became suspect and had to move about constantly until in 1945 the Russians came and appointed Mr Deutschkron guardsman. When, however, for a short time the Germans returned, Mr Deutschkron was to be shot as a traitor. The couple, under renewed menace of death, escaped. Eventually, the Russians liberated them.

Number of pages: 21
Reference number: 1656/3/7/918
Catalogue ID: 105664
Subject: ChildrenKindertransportDeportations

The outstanding impression of the account, written in the first person, is the deep religious faith of the writer. Rather than a record of facts, it is a praise of the Lord for her salvation, both physical and spiritual, and an explanation of her eventual conversion to the Christian Faith.

The author was born in Berlin, the daughter of Orthodox Dutch Jews. When the Nazi regime started, the family moved to Amsterdam, but the happy atmosphere of their home was never recaptured there. After the German invasion and with the gradual elimination of the Jews from the economic and cultural life, the Dobschiner's moved to the Jewish part of Amsterdam, and an uncle and two cousins lived with them.

In February 1941 German armed soldiers raided the town, demanding 4,000 Jews, and author's two brothers were taken away and murdered. Her parents, already weighed down by fear and expropriation of their property, broke down completely. The author's relation to them became strained, particularly as her father insisted on her training as a tailoress, whereas she longed to become a nurse. She finally yielded to this urge and looked after the many Jewish orphaned children. In December 1942 author contracted scarlet fever and during her illness felt that life held a message from God. The raids had already taken her uncle and the cousins, when in April 1943 her parents were arrested. The author was allowed to see them twice at the collecting centre and later she witnessed their deportation from the Children's Home, where she then worked.

Some time later the Children's Home was raided, the 150 children and staff deported. Shortly before, the author had been placed with a Jewish family, but they, too, were arrested and taken to the Amstelstation. The author, quite apathetic to her own fate, offered to take charge of the children, and later, when they were herded into a goods train, she discovered spots on a child and diagnosed a contagious disease. The Gestapo let her take the child to Dr. van Emden-Boas who, impressed by her courage, made her his nurse. She worked at the station and at a hospital until July 1943, when patients and nurses were deported. The author was already on the train, guarded by armed soldiers, but the same night she was back at the hospital “God delivered me!”.

When the hospital was raided again in August 1943, the author happened to nurse at a private house. For some time she then worked at the Joodse Invalide, the Jewish home for the aged. In the end, underground life was the only escape from deportation. With the help of the porter at the Home, the author contacted an unknown lady in whose flat she met Uncle Bas. On 3 September 1943, he took her on a hazardous journey to his home in Nieuw Beerta. With five other young people in hiding, the author lived with the Rev. Ader and his wife for 13 months. Several books have been written about this heroic man and the life in his manse. When danger approached, he found new underground places for his protegees.

The author lived in more than 27 different houses during the last span of this period. While in Uncle Bas' house, she came across the Children's New Testament and sometimes listened, hidden behind a door, to his services. He never tried to convert her, but she became more and more impressed with the teachings of Christ. South Holland was liberated by the Americans in September 1944, and in November she was baptized. She had never been able to discuss her intention with Uncle Bas. He and his wife were finally tracked down by the Gestapo. He was offered their freedom at the price of the name of ten of his protegees. As he would not speak, he was shot on 20 November 1944.

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