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  • Immigration to the United States 1933–41


    Potential immigrants to the US from Nazi-occupied territory faced many obstacles, including restrictive quotas and complicated requirements for obtaining visas.

    Immigration to the United States 1933–41
  • World War II in Europe


    World War II lasted from 1939 to 1945, when the Allies defeated the Axis powers. Learn about key invasions and events during WWII, also known as the Second World War.

    Tags: World War II
    World War II in Europe
  • Wolfgang Munzer

    ID Card

    An only child, Wolfgang was born in Berlin to Jewish parents. His father was the foreign representative for a sewing notions company. The family lived in a comfortable apartment in the southwestern district of the city. Wolfgang attended secondary school there and hoped to become an electrical engineer. 1933-39: When the Nazis came to power, Wolfgang's father fled Germany because he was a socialist and was afraid he'd be arrested. Wolfgang's mother was very ill, so his grandmother took care of him until…

    Wolfgang Munzer
  • Israel Cendorf

    ID Card

    Israel was born into a religious Hasidic family who hoped he would become a rabbi. But Israel rebelled and apprenticed himself to a printer when he was 16. He read constantly, deepening his sympathy with the workers' struggle, and he soon began to write his own revolutionary songs. His first book of poems, The Red Agenda, was warmly received. 1933-39: In 1933, the year Hitler became chancellor of Germany, Israel moved to Paris. But the city was wracked by unemployment, and Jewish immigrants were in…

    Israel Cendorf
  • 1935: Key Dates


    Explore a timeline of key events in Nazi Germany during 1935.

    Tags: key dates
    1935: Key Dates
  • The Biological State: Nazi Racial Hygiene, 1933–1939


    Between 1933-1939, Nazi eugenics and racial hygiene led to policies like mass sterilization and criminalizing marriage between Jews and non-Jews.

    The Biological State: Nazi Racial Hygiene, 1933–1939
  • Hessy Levinsons Taft describes her family's escape from occupied France to the "zone libre" (free zone) in the south of France

    Oral History

    As prewar antisemitism intensified, Hessy's family fled from Germany to Paris, France. France fell to the German army in June 1940. Hessy's family was smuggled into the "zone libre" (free zone) in southern France. The family received a US visa in 1941, but was unable to leave before the visa expired and could not obtain an extension. In 1942, the family obtained visas to enter Cuba, where they settled before immigrating to the United States in 1949.

    Tags: escape France
    Hessy Levinsons Taft describes her family's escape from occupied France to the "zone libre" (free zone) in the south of France
  • Le Chambon-sur-Lignon


    From 1940 to 1944, Le Chambon-sur-Lignon and neighboring villages provided shelter to some 5,000 people, among them Jews fleeing persecution.

    Le Chambon-sur-Lignon
  • Margit Morawetz

    ID Card

    When Margit was a baby, her family moved from Austria to Prague, Czechoslovakia. Her father was a banker from a religious Jewish family in Bohemia and her mother came from a Viennese family of Jewish origin. Margit knew many languages: Czech, French, English and German, which she spoke with her family. 1933-39: In 1938, when Margit was 16, attacks on Jews in central Europe escalated and her parents decided she should leave. She left secondary school in Prague and went to Paris, where she studied…

    Tags: Paris France
    Margit Morawetz
  • Rémy Dumoncel

    ID Card

    Rémy was born in a small French town to Catholic parents. In 1913, after studying law at the University of Paris, he joined the Tallandier publishing house in Paris. During World War I he served in the French army and was wounded five times. He returned to work at Tallandier after the war, and in 1919 he married Germaine Tallandier, the daughter of the owner. They had five children whom they raised as devout Catholics. 1933-39: In 1935 Rémy became the mayor of Avon, a small town about 35 miles southeast…

    Rémy Dumoncel

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