Letters from Else, January to June 1939

Letter: 6 February 1939

Letter written on Werner’s release from Dachau


                  Gleiwitz, 6th February 1939

My dear boy,

We received your telegram at 9 o’clock in the evening; it was very welcome. The first shock at receiving a telegram rapidly changed into delight. My heart sounded like a hammer and my hands trembled with excitement. Boy, my boy, what weeks they were! After receiving your next detailed news there will be more information. These lines are only intended as a first communication. We hope that in the meantime you arrived safely in Frankfurt. Father will take the letter to the post office.

Much love and kisses

From your Mother.

Also greetings from Grandma who is lying in bed. Did you receive my last letter of the 2nd and the money? Enjoy your freedom and write in detail soon.

Your Father

(Translation by Helga Brown BA Dip. Ed. née Steinhardt)

6th February 1939, Envelope
6th February 1939, Envelope

Letter: 8 February 1939

8th February, 1939
8th February, 1939
8th February, 1939, page 2
8th February, 1939, page 2

Gleiwitz, 8th February, 1939

My dear boy,

The telegram I received so happily that I kept re-reading it to make sure it was real. We breathed a sigh of relief and were no longer depressed after three months of worry. Therefore, it was great to see your handwriting on the letter from Frankfurt, which also arrived. The telegram came at nine o’clock in the evening, just as we were about to go to bed, and we didn’t get to sleep until 11 o’clock, because we were so excited. The next thing we did was to write at once to the aunts and to you, and when father took both to the post office, it suddenly occurred to me that we should have sent you a letter and telegram and as father agreed, he took it to the rail station. The address of the school was simpler, otherwise I would have had to send it to Fräulein H. Meanwhile, you will have received our message and letter. We were very pleased to hear from Frl H that you are looking well. I expect you slept well; I hope you will continue to stay in good health. Did you sleep at Frl H’s place? The prospect of seeing you soon is lovely but we don’t understand what you mean, as you know the school is always in urgent need of carers.

The addresses you want, my dear son, you will find amongst the enclosed papers; one address will be sent to you by Aunt Hedel. I don’t have your cousin’s address, as sister Recha didn’t reply to my letter. I asked your cousin Recha to let you have the address of her sister by writing; she has another sister, the eldest one – Edith – there in New York. I hope she will do this. I expect you will write to her direct quite soon and thank her for her previous correspondence. You will find in one of the letters that she went in your interest from Pontius to Pilate and that came about because your father wanted to load you on a ship to Shanghai, but I didn’t want that. When I mentioned this to Dr Honegbaum – a rep. of the Aid Association – she advised me to write to London to the Chinese authorities about a visa. But I wrote to Reha in Berlin about this request and begged her to fetch the visa personally to speed up this arrangement, but Dr Honegbaum advised me to contact London because the visa there is free of charge. You will see the result from your letter. He should have said that in the first place. Too many people are waiting, as a result of this advice, in queues for hours. I also asked Myst in a letter to give you the address of Frieda’s relations, who if they didn’t want to sponsor you themselves could, perhaps, inform their friends about your predicament and ask them for advice.

Sunday afternoon Aunt Frieda was here; she sends her love. Father has a cousin in USA – Bernard Pinoff, who has done well but that is all we know about him; we have no address, nothing. It is 30 years since we last contacted him and I don’t know how we can find out. Aunt Frieda said that in a London broadcast in German last Saturday that Holland has accepted 700 refugees. Dr Honegbaum didn’t know anything about that on Monday. Your name Israel, which was legally ascribed to you, father registered as your legal representative, in your absence, in Berlin, duty bound. You only need to apply for an Identity Card.

That is all that is important. It’s a lovely thought that when I wake at night I no longer need to worry about you in D. my dearest son. Enjoy your life and give my regards to Fräulein Hanau.

Lots of love and kisses from your mother.

Please be kind and acknowledge the receipt of this letter dear Werner. Praise be to God that the time has finally come.

Much love – father

My dear Werner

At last you will escape from your unfriendly surroundings [trans. note: I think it might say ‘released from imprisonment’]. God will be with you in your future plans.

Love Grandma

(Translation by Helga Brown BA Dip. Ed. née Steinhardt)

*The following may be the address mentioned above. Fr Hanau was Werner’s landlady in Frankfurt am Main.

Note: 20th February 1939


Underneath the new address for Arthur Bloch this note states that Jamaica is around an hour and a half away from New York.

Letter: 27 February 1939

27th February 1939 – envelope, front
27th February 1939 – envelope, back
Letter: 27th February 1939 – page one
Letter: 27th February 1939 – page two

Gleiwitz, 27th February 1939

My dear Werner,

We were surprised to receive a second letter from you in the morning – pleasantly surprised, as we knew you were in Berlin on Friday evening – you used your time in Berlin to arrange your affairs. We were especially pleased that you had the chance to visit your relatives and they welcomed you so that you were able to return to Frankfurt in a more relaxed mood, and we are thankful that you are able to carry out your duties with fewer worries for your future. After you received confirmation of your acceptance by the camp we can regard your circumstances more positively. You don’t seem to be aware of our application to enter Bolivia, which was sent via the Aid Association even before you heard from the camp. I definitely couldn’t come to a decision about Shanghai; that is why Dr Honig suggested Bolivia and I agreed to finally find an opportunity for you to leave. Finally, we received your affidavit from Arthur Bloch. If I were in your place I could definitely accept that, dear Werner. Johann Heilbronns has gone to Australia, as they are wealthy, so it is possible that their brother will be released and may join you. If they emigrate to the USA, perhaps your friend in Kassel can complete the affidavit if it’s insufficient; perhaps that is what Uncle Kurt suggested. That is why you should suggest something like that to Uncle Arthur in N.Y. Don’t you think I am right?

We think that you are right in responding to Engel’s suggestion. You can choose what you want to tell me and if you don’t have enough to do at school, it could be an advantage and you could follow the advice of Dr Cohn and spend more time learning English. Is she a young or old Dr? I think she is the person the Aid Association first consulted and that she concerned herself with your affairs, so perhaps you should write to her now and again. I think your name should take the place of the person who is teaching on the timetable. In case the first transport planned to leave on the 30/4 is delayed, it will be a good idea that your name is still advertised. I am surprised that you don’t mention Recha’s husband. Don’t you like him? Or didn’t you get to know him? On Thursday I sent a letter to Recha, condoling on your behalf and asked her if she didn’t want Margot to help her, in case she needs someone in the household. I hope my dear niece has changed her preferences, so that one can send her in good conscience. You don’t seem to have talked to Heinz and you didn’t visit Heises. I am sorry about that, because I obtained the address of the Heilbrons from Richard. What you didn’t tell me about in your last letter, you can tell me in your next one, as there is so much to be told. The visit to Berlin was really worth your while and successful, thank God, dear child – hearty congratulations. If you are really leaving so soon, was our parting the final one? That would be terrible and I can’t believe it. Monday afternoon was terribly difficult: the apartment so empty and the conversation with my son absent. Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday I had no time for such moods. The newly appointed laundry woman didn’t come and I had to start on the task myself, she came at last.

[The letter appears to be unfinished/part is missing]

Letter: 28 February 1939


Gleiwitz, 28th February 1939

10.30 in the evening

Dear Werner,

Although I sent a letter to you yesterday, I want to enclose a few lines with the small package and wish you a healthy appetite, bon appetite. The chocolate sauce was not a success and that is why the cake is of exceptional quality with double filling. Please tell Miss Hanau that because of the double filling the cake can’t be kept any longer. At 1.26 o’clock we received a phone call from the Villa Kuschnitzki that Aunt Frieda was passing by, and Father was to go to the station. Of course I accompanied him and aunt has already left for the station with father to travel to Beuthen from where she had come, to carry out some business. Early tomorrow morning she will return home and she sends you her love. Ilse goes to the cinema, she only pays 20 gr not 50, because she is saving up for her emigration.

I am anxious to find out if there is anything of use to us, from USA from the aunt. Incidentally, you could contact your comrade from Kassel about receiving a completion affidavit visa S from Arthur Bloch. In case you have received my letter to Frankfurt in which we discussed your steps undertaken for your emigration – you will find that there is also mention of the application to Bolivia.

Much love,


My Dear Werner,

I hope you enjoyed the cake and the orange juice. I like it. Aunt Frieda was here and I took her to the station. I hope you hear from Frankfurt soon.

Look after yourself my dear.


Dear Werner,

Keep well and warm and drink the orange juice if you can. I am well and hope you are.

Love grandmother.

Grandmother is not as well as she says; we have had the doctor to her. Thanks for your last letter – Love Mother

(Translation by Helga Brown BA Dip. Ed. née Steinhardt)

Enclosed: cutting and note

Jugend - poem and note


That is luck – to be standing in daily battle

Where muscles tremble with the efforts of work

To see the action grow in its entirety

Anew to live doing one’s duty

To look into the eyes towards the dark future

To look ahead, but never to look back

To trust to one’s innermost strengths

The heart full of hope. That is my luck

Hans Caspar von Starden

Handwritten note on side of page:

Found this by chance today. Anyone who finds comfort in work is a very lucky person.

Reverse of cutting


Note from translator: This military article on the reverse is incomplete. I believe it is a description of action by an army battalion during the First World War; it might have belonged to Leopold.

Letter: 2 March 1939

02_05_1939_Half_002 2

Gleiwitz, 2nd March, 1939

Dear Werner,

Because recently you wrote that you didn’t know anything about Bolivia, I am sending you the enclosed article. It is a country which is praised, as you say, but I strongly hope that you don’t have to go there. The application was a result of the utmost anxiety. Perhaps you will be interested in the small article. Father found it and wanted me to write regarding it, but it is a letter which I can’t come to terms with. Perhaps you will find someone, in the end, who can comprehend such matters. Father is in Tost today; he wants to find out if there is anything to be had for us in the distribution of savings. I don’t believe there will be. L. Bohm has already left, she didn’t say goodbye to anyone, in my opinion he didn’t get enough.

I hope, dear son, that you are well really, and not just saying that. I wish you a Happy Purim. How was the first week in school?

Lots of love


I expect in the meanwhile the package to Miss H. has been received. The bottle of 4711 I kept back because it was too risky to send. The article/ cutting is from the Wednesday paper. The mid 20s is actually a bit too much.

(Translation by Helga Brown BA Dip. Ed. née Steinhardt)

Letter: 5 April 1939

5th April, 1939, page 1
5th April, 1939, page 2

Gleiwitz, 5th April, 1939

Dear Werner

Your letter arrived here yesterday afternoon and your card, and just as you asked I carried out your request and took everything to the Post Office so that it will reach you on Saturday at the latest. There isn’t time to write a letter. Of the cake I made, you naturally received a quarter. I can’t make it any bigger because of financial difficulties and partly because I also only get 1½lb of flour and 3¾lb for baking matzos – it is much less than in previous years.

Your letter found me in a better state of health but I haven’t completely recovered. I had to stay in bed most of the day yesterday. In the evenings and at night I cough a lot, but today not so much. I am still hoarse. On Wednesday afternoon my head was burning hot. I went to bed with the intention of not getting up again that day, as I didn’t feel well at all, but after one hour’s rest the doorbell rang. Grandma was also enjoying her siesta. Frdl, Fathers co-worker, wanted him to work and he couldn’t refuse and they sat in the lounge, so I had to get up to talk to her and I had to give them coffee and cake and I was very cross about all that talk.

When he had finally gone, I started a letter to Fräulein Hanau because I didn’t think there would be a chance to write before Easter otherwise. I had hardly written a line, when much to my surprise Aunt Klara appeared. She had been to Hindenburg in the pouring rain to leave some valuables with Dr Jakob, found the pawn shop closed, and stayed here for one and a half hours, so left at seven; with my head so hot I was obviously feverish. I couldn’t even accompany her to the tram. Father was at the Post Office, I forgot to tell you that. At last I got into bed, sweated the whole night with a temperature of 37 and 38 later in the evening. I also had a sore throat and was very hoarse. I took some lemon and gargled, that could not make me better by tomorrow morning. My temperature dropped during the course of the next day and by Saturday I was quite well again, so I got up. A day in bed was very suitable as Fräulein Fried moved in that day and I couldn’t do much on the holy days and it gave me a chance to clean the house for Frau Bujowsky and the doors and windows. I couldn’t do too much to help.

In the evening about ten o’clock, when both Father and I were contemplating sleep, Aunt Frieda came and Father had to make up a bed for her. She went back on Sunday afternoon. She was in Berlin the previous week. We had sad news from Margot that she was in hospital for an operation, probably appendicitis. I think she is in the gynaecological ward and she should be in the surgical ward.

Our new housemates have gone away until Wednesday and it is unusually quiet, which is very good for me. Herr and Frau Buj are most kind amenable people with whom we can converse so we do a great deal of chattering, but the absolute quiet is doing me the world of good after the upheaval of two moves. We will probably have visitors again on Sunday and Monday, Uncle Kurt and Aunt. If you should write to Aunt Frieda I will borrow your letter dear Werner (maybe the reply from her). I will give it back to you.

Did you read the latest edition of the Jewish paper that Woburn House has moved to Bloomsbury House? It’s a pity about Cambridge because one doesn’t hear anything good about the camp. It is a bit like imprisonment, you can only withdraw cash at certain times, obviously no one wants to work there. It is doubtful whether Dr Engel or anyone else can find employment as he hasn’t promised you anything before you emigrated. It would have been more use to apply to Woburn House, but what can you do if you don’t have the sponsorship. We have to thank God for what we have.

Listen, you have to get mothballs for your winter coat because there aren’t enough secure wardrobes in the camp [Kitchener camp, UK]. I hope the package will arrive safely. I wish you bon appetite with the edibles and pleasant holy days and holidays. Have you applied for a passport? What news are you expecting from the R.V.? Did you congratulate Aunt Frieda?

Love from Father and Grandmother

And special kisses from your Mother

(Translation by Helga Brown BA Dip. Ed. née Steinhardt)

Letter: 6 April 1939


                                                                                      Gleiwitz, 6th April 1939

Dear Werner,

Your most pleasing letter of the 4th arrived early this morning, otherwise I would have been able to reply earlier yesterday. You are right, my dear son, the situation is grim. The wealthy man may be able to help a poor devil, to save him from drowning.

Dr W[eil]. is a fabulous person. Within a short space of time he is willing not only to find a roof over his own family, but also to help you. He must be a good judge of people and very skilled at negotiating in such a way as to use his abilities. Many who share these attributes are not able to put them to such good use and act upon them. Anyway, we congratulate you with all our hearts and wish you the best of luck, my dear child. I hope the good God will continue to help you in this matter. If I contemplate what I have written during the last three months and nothing worked, it seemed as if there was no solution for you and the despair increased so greatly. And now! Frau Hoffmeister, so gifted as a preacher, was right, one should not lose one’s faith in God. He knew that you would be saved in your hour of need. Tears come to my eyes when I think of your predicament and the unexpected great help. I am sure you will be able to cope with the letter in English. You were, after all, a humanist and English is easier than Greek, although I do understand that the letter must be written fluently. And now I am anxious to find out when we will be able to see each other again. Do you want to leave the affidavit with Uncle M. and Aunt Recha? So as not to cause them unnecessary problems I should wait until you receive further instructions from Dr W. I forgot to inform you that yesterday the application from Form B arrived and had to be returned by registered post to the Consulate immediately. Did you inform the Aunts about this? I would rather that you informed them personally. Uncle Kurt has received the news that he has to close his workshop. Aunt Frieda says he has aged tremendously as a result of this in a few days – no wonder. Now he has, through a solicitor, written a declaration addressed to the Minster asking whether he can defer the closure for the time being. There is so much uncertainty; I am extremely upset. There is so much trouble ­– not just forms, but for the others as well. Life is almost unbearable. I am still coughing peu a peu and it is very quiet in the house, which is a blessing.

Have faith in God, my dear son and stay well. Give my regards to Miss Hanau. I wanted to write to her but there are more urgent matters to deal with, I will tell you about them verbally; it wasn’t possible to write to her. The letter to you I am writing in the evening, not the afternoon, like I did yesterday. But now I am going to bed as I am feeling a bit wobbly, probably a relapse.

Grandma sends her love; she had a heavy cold but she recovered quickly; mine was worse.

Love and kisses again,


My dear Werner

I was very pleased with your letter and read it at least three times. I was right to say in my letter to you that God will always be there for you. Anyway, I wish you much luck and lots of love –

From your Father

What you thought was a warning was meant to be a consolation. Don’t forget to give notice on the 15th, otherwise you will have to pay extra for your flat.

(Translation by Helga Brown BA Dip. Ed. née Steinhardt)

6th April 1939, Envelope
6th April 1939, Envelope

Letter: 10 June 1939 

10 June 1939, page 2

                                                                                    Gleiwitz, 10th June 1939

My dear Werner

When we returned from an excursion to Beuthen I was very disappointed at not finding any sign of life from you sent on the way to Belgium, so the card on Friday surprised me. It came from E [England] and was most welcome. We didn’t expect any news from there until Sunday at the earliest. Now we are very pleased that you arrived in the right place without mishap and to know that your new home made a good impression on you. We informed the aunts immediately. You can imagine that Monday and Tuesday my thoughts were about you, Wednesday morning I thought, now he has spent the night there as well.

On Tuesday with the first mail delivery I received a very kind letter from Frau W in which she told me that you left in high spirits, and I read those lines calmly as words of comfort, even though I know she was not telling the truth, which she wrote in conjunction with your package. I also received a letter from H[anau] yesterday in which she wrote that she misses you very much. It really has to be appreciated how much time she devoted in caring about you. I asked Frau W how one can show one’s appreciation to Fräulein H. The F you sent from Cologne has also arrived. Thank you very much; I very much hope that I won’t need to use it. Besides, with this remittance I conclude that Frau W was given the opportunity of completing her mission. The questionnaires arrived from Myst on Tuesday, with the accompanying papers included. Uncle Kurt wrote, however, that with his certificate it is necessary to have permission to travel via other countries. Its 7.37. It has been an eventful week. My every thought is about you, my dear son. Best of luck for your moving in and your new life. May God keep you well.

Everyone sends their regards, not least the aunts.

Special kisses from your Mother

NB I hope the luggage arrived safely. Did you sign for your suitcases, sleeping bag and covers?

(Translation by Helga Brown BA Dip. Ed. née Steinhardt)

Letter: 15th June 1939

15th June 1939, page one
15th June 1939, page one
15th June 1939, page two
15th June 1939, page two

Gleiwitz, 15th June 1939

Dear Werner

It is obvious that you are suffering from homesickness, if you are expecting news from us before Monday. It couldn’t arrive more quickly! Your letter arrived Friday, early in the morning and on Saturday I sat down to write to you. Even if the post were any quicker it wouldn’t have reached you before Monday: that’s why I am answering the letter you wrote Monday and it should be in your hands by Saturday. The mail from Frankfurt sometimes arrived more quickly than from England. Yes, and we are pleased of course, mightily glad that you are well and satisfied with your life. I am sure you will get a more satisfactory occupation soon. I was very excited with your two affidavits, so that you can find the registration number in England. The affidavit for Frau S[ack] may have been sent to Uncle Kurt, or it might be forwarded to us; in spite of the very high allocation number Mr B thinks it will be valid for two years. I am surprised, dear Werner, that you are looking forward to a speedy move. Why do you want to do that? Life in the camp must be carefree. You have a right to demand more from life with a view to freedom, as everyone has; apart from a lack of money you have your liberty. I can understand that at first you were content.

We have to be thankful to those trying to help us in America. I hope we find someone to write a letter on our behalf. You must write to Frau S; she may have contacted an Aid Welfare organisation. I can’t send you another letter in answer to you, as the Post Office is only allowing us to send one a month. We have cleaned your bike, it looks really good, as I have always said – don’t be too quick to discard it. Who would have thought you could use it for excursions in England. If the camp is only 40 km from the sea, you could go on foot easily to reach it. When will you be allowed to visit E? Perhaps you did. He has a lovely flat; you could store some of your belongings there. Do you still have bunk beds? In the letter published by the camp it says you should have two pillows and three pairs of pyjamas. Why are there such strict regulations? There is no way you can afford these.

Margot and Heinz came at 2 o’clock on Sunday and left at 6 to return to B[erlin?]. I served the potato salad I had prepared for their supper at lunchtime, soon after their arrival. They liked it as we ate it warm; they had been invited by someone else as well. I think they were quite bored, as ever; they like to amuse themselves. They decided to stay overnight, pack up and leave their belongings here until their departure. Heinz has to be at work on Monday, so they had to leave early in the morning. I am glad to report that both are looking well. Margot hasn’t found a job yet. I hope she will find one soon. Uncle Jakob will be leaving for Shanghai soon; his brother who is organising the journey from Konigsberg will look after him.

Aunt Frieda has asked if we can’t meet up at the border. If it just took an hour I would do so, but I don’t think it is worth it for just an eight-minute meeting. What is there to say to one another? I have invited Aunt Hedel for next week. I am anxious to find out if she comes. She always says she will, but she never does. Frau Buj had to travel suddenly because her mother is seriously ill. I got used to her eventually, so I miss her. More and more people are going away.

Furthermore, dear Werner, all the best of luck.

Love from Mother

I hope the address is correct. I have left your card at the aunts. I have finally written to Frau W and Fraulein H and Reche.

Dear Werner

From your last letter I gather you have settled. I wish you all the best and that you will soon obtain an impressive position.

Much love – Grandma

NB Margot hasn’t found a job in Berlin yet.

(Translation by Helga Brown BA Dip. Ed. née Steinhardt)

Letter: 22nd June 1939

22nd June 1939, page one
22nd June 1939, page one
22nd June 1939, page two
22nd June 1939, page two

Gleiwitz, 22nd June 1939

Dear Werner,

We are pleased to receive good news about your personal circumstances, which is the main thing. Less joyful is the seven-year long wait, but I don’t think that can be taken seriously; but I can’t imagine why you haven’t registered when you applied for your affidavit originally, when you were advised to do so by Dr W. What made you do it eventually? Now you have two affidavits and not a seven-year delay and a registration number without use. An ideal situation for all of us. The best thing would be for you to appeal for help for us to emigrate, when you are allowed to travel to London, with the Emigration Aid office, wouldn’t it? There might be a possibility. I expect it will be just the same in England as it is in Germany. Perhaps among the ladies and gentlemen there who teach you English as an advanced student – you will certainly be in touch, as these people move amongst the elite; others will not have time for their favours. If you write to Dr W[eil]. he will shake his head about your arrangements. There can’t be many people with two affidavits and no registration number. I am also certain that there is not a teacher, despite of Rabbi Akibe, who on experiencing so much stress didn’t contemplate death. I was really upset when I read about this. Terrible for the students and for those who found the young man. Altogether such unfortunate events have been recorded, but surely not in respect of a teacher. I have found the letter you asked me for and I will send it off today.

What does he need it for? The case of Weissenberg is not an investigation matter and it has been dealt with, or hasn’t it? The meeting with Dr Breslauer is a joke, but nothing strange, because especially since people from all over Germany are getting together. I know him by sight and he doesn’t know me at all; I suspect Father must have introduced him at the temple, but he can’t remember him. His wife is certainly in Tost as the letters bear the postmark Tost. Lisa Kohn from Beuthen is also in the camp. Kurt Nicklaus is acting on her behalf. He was here with Margot and Heinz on Saturday to Sunday. He asked me for your address; I don’t know the reason. He is a nice polite man, but there is something about him that I don’t care for, perhaps you know, you have to look at him very closely. On Sunday Heinz and Margot left early for Berlin, Heinz with a lame leg – while in the gym he dislocated his knee, but it readjusted itself. He did the same thing nine years ago and it doesn’t seem to have settled completely. Aunt Hedel wanted to write to you and to send a reply coupon. I am surprised you haven’t received it. The Goldschmidt school doesn’t seem to be in a hurry to open in E[ngland], as they haven’t replied to you. We have to put up a poster about our room soon; I am worried about that. Otherwise there is not much to tell you. I hope this letter written on Thursday will reach you by Monday. Your letter took the same time as the last one.

God be with you, my son.

Love and kisses from your Mother

N.B. We got three duvets from an offer by Selkan. Are you busy in the kitchen now? Can’t you offer lectures in your own specialist subjects. You must decide how you can make best use of your qualifications.

(Translation by Helga Brown BA Dip. Ed. née Steinhardt)

Letter: 29 June 1939

29th June 1939, page one
29th June 1939, page one
29th June 1939, page two
29th June 1939, page two

Gleiwitz, 29th June 1939

Dear Werner,

We were pleased to receive your last letter twenty-four hours ago, and yesterday’s, and to note that you are well and cheerful. Incidentally, I showed each one of your letters to the aunts, who were eagerly awaiting your news. I don’t suppose you have written to Myslowitz but one day you will have to manage even if it is only a card. Today I received your aforementioned letter with an accompanying nice letter to a dear honourable lady ‘Um hum hum’ and what concerns you; we all miss him greatly but we are glad that he has achieved his goal and add my appreciation as well – that was what God had in mind.

I had a pleasant long letter from Frau Wallensteiner on Friday. I had asked her to tell me what I could send to Fräulein Hanau to remember you by. You didn’t answer my question as to what I can give which will be permanent, and Mrs W thinks that Fräulein Hanau will certainly be embarrassed if she receives a present now. If I send something all the same, it will be a cake, the same as I sent before; the teachers thought it amusing. I baked the cake yesterday, but I didn’t fill it with chocolate cream because it broke during the thunderstorm, but I used marmalade instead, but I promised that when the weather is cooler I will make one of my usual quality. I added a bottle of 4711, which I already had, and two photos of you as a child: one as a lead soldier, the other possibly a sheep. I didn’t really want to part with the photos. I wouldn’t have given them to anyone other than Fräulein Hanau. I know she will be pleased with the souvenirs. I posted the parcel today. Uncle Fedor wrote that he is in Cologne; he didn’t know the date of your departure. His advice came too late – he thought you could visit him by travelling to Holland, but I didn’t get his letter in time. Yesterday, Frau Bug returned in spite of the fact that her Mother is still in hospital. Herr Bug has travelled to Hamburg; there are so many difficulties facing anyone wishing to emigrate.

His son in Berlin has finally received his permit after great efforts and he is now to make a list of his possessions. Probably his son will visit here, before his parents leave. He will stay for ten days. Now I have told you enough. When you write, God willing you must tell me what it means, literally. I know what a spleen is. You don’t have a reg. number. I ought to learn English. I don’t think I will, but God will help you further.

Love and kisses from the three of us – especially Mother

N.B. I would love to walk along the coast with you, my son. If I could write in English, there would be fewer words and I would save paper.

(Translation by Helga Brown BA Dip. Ed. née Steinhardt)