In January 1944, FDR established the War Refugee Board which was charged with “immediate rescue and relief of the Jews of Europe and other victims of enemy persecution.”
Nazi anti-Jewish laws began stripping Jews of rights and property from the start of Hitler’s dictatorship. Learn about antisemitic laws in prewar Germany.
Zionist and activist Peter H. Bergson advocated in the United States for the establishment of...
Franklin D. Roosevelt was 32nd president of the US. Learn about the domestic and international challenges FDR faced as president during World War II.
The Decree against Public Enemies was a key step in the process by which the Nazi leadership moved Germany from a democracy to a dictatorship.
Learn about Amsterdam during World War II and the Holocaust, including deportations of Jews to concentration camps and killing centers.
Group portrait of children holding their diplomas at a school in Bitola. Between 1925 and 1938.
Simone Weil earned this diploma, which certified her to teach kindergarten in France, from the School of Social Work in Strasbourg in 1940. Weil assumed a false identity in late 1943 to facilitate her resistance activities as a member of the relief and rescue organization Oeuvre de Secours aux Enfants (Children's Aid Society; OSE). Among the papers documenting Weil's new identity was a forged version of this diploma bearing the name "Simone Werlin".
Simone Weil used this forged diploma and other false papers to document a new identity assumed in late 1943. As Simone Werlin, she could avoid arrest and change residence to facilitate her rescue of Jewish children as a member of the relief and rescue organization Oeuvre de Secours aux Enfants (Children's Aid Society; OSE). Weil had earned the diploma, which certified her to teach kindergarten in France, from the School of Social Work in Strasbourg in 1940. The director of the school willingly forged this…
Stephen Wise (1874–1949) was a prominent US Jewish leader in the 1933–1945 period. Born in Budapest in 1874 and the grandson of the Chief Rabbi of Eger, Hungary (a town about sixty miles northeast of Budapest), Stephen Wise immigrated to New York as a child. After his ordination as a Reform rabbi, he led a congregation in Portland, Oregon, where his liberal political convictions inspired him to fight for child labor laws and for the demands of striking workers. A charismatic orator, he became a…
From 1942 until the end of the war in 1945, the Nazi court system became more and more a state...
Why did the United States go to war? What did Americans know about the “Final Solution”? How did Americans respond to news about the Holocaust? Learn more.
Hundreds of laws, decrees, guidelines, and regulations increasingly restricted the civil and human rights of Jews in Germany from 1933-39. Learn more.
Learn about early concentration camps the Nazi regime established in Germany, and the expansion of the camp system during the Holocaust and World War II.
Joseph Goebbels, Nazi politician, propagandist, and radical antisemite, was Reich Minister for Propaganda and Public Enlightenment from 1933 until 1945.
The Wagner-Rogers Bill proposed admitting 20,000 refugee children to the US from the Greater German Reich in 1939–40, but did not become law. Learn more
US State Department official Breckinridge Long supervised the Visa Division, which placed new restrictions on immigration to the US in the 1940s. Learn more.
After the Nazi rise to power in 1933, the German system of justice underwent "coordination" (alignment with Nazi goals). Learn more about law and justice in the Third Reich.
Diploma issued by the International Refugee Organization (IRO) certifying that Naftali Froimowicz was trained as a shoemaker in Turin, Italy on November 14, 1949. Froimowicz lived in several displaced persons (DP) camps in Italy after the war.
Bruna was the oldest of two children born to Italian-speaking Jewish parents who had settled in the cosmopolitan city of Trieste. Her father, born in Vienna, served in the Austro-Hungarian army during World War I. He became a naturalized Italian during the 1920s after marrying Bruna's mother. Growing up in fascist Italy, Bruna attended public schools in Trieste and felt proud to be an Italian. 1933-39: In September 1938 Bruna was surprised to see anti-Jewish graffiti. Then anti-Jewish race laws were…
International League Against Anti-Semitism in North Africa (LICA) was born of French-Jewish concerns that Fascist and antisemitic ideas would spread from Europe to indigenous population in France’s colonies. The org...
The Harrison Report criticized conditions in the DP camps, called for changes in the treatment of Jewish DPs, and recommended allowing them to emigrate to the US and Palestine.
Nazi Germany’s territorial expansion and the radicalization of Nazi anti-Jewish policies triggered a mass exodus. Learn about the US and the refugee crisis of 1938–41.
Learn about causes, scope, and impacts of the Great Depression, including how it played a role in Adolf Hitler's emergence as a viable political leader in Germany.
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