We have quite a number of letters written by various family members to Werner over the 1930s and early 1940s, and some from Margot both during and after the war; there are also some from people whom I assume at this stage were family friends, and some from colleagues.
It was very difficult to know what to include here, if anything, but these letters are now historical documents, and the information in them is thus of historical significance.
Letters from Hermine
While they are personal letters, many of which were written in times of great distress, they provide an insight into conditions among families at the time. Given the revisionism and the willingness to forget, in the wider global context, the trend towards documentation of these events would seem to be a good thing in itself. Having these letters in a suitcase under the bed might have helped our father: however, I hope it is appropriate that they should now contribute to the wider body of knowledge – which was something dad believed in.
Additionally, all the people these letters concern died many years ago – Margot died in 2007; my father died in 1990, and everyone else died over 70 years ago. If their writings can illuminate the conditions under which Jewish families lived and died under National Socialism – then so be it.
The letters are gradually being translated for us by a woman who left Germany with her family, alongside a Kindertransport: her name is Helga Steinhardt Brown. We are very lucky indeed to have her kind support in this.
To read the letters, please click to follow the links on this page, or you can find them from the main menu.
A scan of the German letters is provided first, followed by the translation. Please bear with me: completing this task is going to take a long time.