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.
Rudolf Hilferding was a well-known socialist. Also Jewish, he was persecuted by the Nazis and later died in prison. His books were burned in Germany in 1933.
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…
Learn how the rise of nationalism in Europe (1800–1918) resulted in new forms of prejudice against Jews based on political, social, and economic considerations.
Henry Morgenthau Jr had a key role in creating and operating the War Refugee Board, a government agency tasked with rescuing and providing relief for Jews during the Holocaust.
Key dates in the life of Reinhard Heydrich, chief of the Reich Security Main Office, the SS and police agency most directly concerned with implementing Final Solution.
Hans was born to a Jewish family in the small Dutch town of Kampen. His father worked as a tailor, and he taught Hans about the tailoring trade. 1933-39: Hans was a skilled tailor, and an accomplished pianist as well. Inquisitive about all subjects, Hans loved to read and to keep abreast of current events. 1940-43: When the Jews in the Dutch provinces were ordered to relocate to Amsterdam in January 1942, the Rudelsheims complied. In early 1943, while in hiding with a Christian family near Leiden, Hans…
Jews in early modern Europe were subject to various laws, restrictions, and protections. Learn how these policies reinforced antisemitic stereotypes.
The word antisemitism means prejudice against or hatred of Jews. The Holocaust is history’s most extreme example of antisemitism. Learn more.
The SS, a Nazi paramilitary led by Heinrich Himmler, played the central role in carrying out the “Final Solution,” the plan to murder the Jews of Europe. But, the SS did not work alone. They relied upon other German institutions and professionals.
Reinhard Heydrich, Reich Security Main Office chief, was one of the main architects of the “Final Solution," the Nazi plan to murder the Jews of Europe.
Leah and her four brothers were raised in a religious Jewish family in the city of Lvov. After obtaining her high school diploma, Leah attended university for one year. In 1931 she married Joseph Rapaport, and the couple settled in Warsaw. 1933-39: The Rapaports lived in the suburbs, and Joseph worked as a banker. Their daughter Zofia was born in May 1933. Each year at the Jewish holiday of Passover, they returned to Lvov to visit Leah's parents. Two days after Joseph was mobilized for military duty in…
Explore a timeline of key events during 1939 in the history of Nazi Germany, World War II, and the Holocaust.
The Enabling Act of March 1933 allowed the Reich government to issue laws without the consent of Germany’s parliament. It laid the foundation for the Nazification of German society.
Visitors view the exhibition of the Arrow Cross newspaper, Pesti Ujság, at the International Fair in Budapest. The headline reads: "For a Hungary without Jews." Budapest, Hungary, approximately 1941-1942. The Arrow Cross was Hungary's largest fascist political movement after 1935. In the 1939 parliamentary elections it won over 20% of the vote and had more than 250,000 members. Its ideology was ultra-nationalistic and fiercely antisemitic. The Arrow Cross viewed Jews as an "anti-national" "race"…
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.
Hitler speaks before the Reichstag (German parliament). Amid rising international tensions, he tells the German public and the world that the outbreak of war would mean the end of European Jewry.
Before June 1942, Protectorate Jews were the only "residents" of the Theresienstadt camp-ghetto. Beginning with a transport of 50 Berlin Jews arriving on June 2, 1942, the German authorities deported German, Austrian, Danziger, Luxembourger, and Sudeten Jews to Theresienstadt. Deportations In 1942, 47,478 Jews arrived in Theresienstadt from the Greater German Reich (from Germany, 32,878; Austria, 13,922; Luxembourg, 213; Danzig, 110; and the Sudetenland, 355). In 1943, 5,398 Jews arrived in the…
Esterwegen was part of the Nazi regime’s early system of concentration camps, created to hold people arrested as opponents of the new regime.
When Agnes was a teenager, she attended Budapest's prestigious Baar Madas private school, run by the Hungarian Reformed Church. Although she was the only Jewish student there, Agnes' parents believed that the superior education at the school was important for their daughter. Agnes' father, a textile importer, encouraged his daughter to think for herself. 1933-39: In 1936 Agnes studied educational techniques with Signora Maria Montessori in Italy and earned a diploma so she could teach. Hoping to improve…
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…
Jeno was the youngest of five children born to Jewish parents living in a suburb of Budapest. His father was a wholesale merchant who sold beer to restaurants and stores. After receiving a university diploma, Jeno became a pharmacist. He and his wife, Aranka, and their two children, Eva and Andras, shared a large old house in Ujpest with Jeno's father and other members of the extended family. 1933-39: Jeno's friends and family have helped him raise the large amount of money he needs to lease his own…
The Moringen camp was one of the so-called youth protection camps that the Nazi regime established for young people who were alleged to have strayed from Nazi norms and ideals.
The film "The Nazi Plan" was shown as evidence at the International Military Tribunal in Nuremberg on December 11, 1945. It was compiled for the trial by Budd Schulberg and other US military personnel, under the supervision of Navy Commander James Donovan. The compilers used only German source material, including official newsreels. This footage titled "Hitler Predicts Annihilation of the Jewish Race in Europe if War Occurs" shows Hitler delivering a speech to the German parliament on January 30, 1939.
The Vichy regime introduced race laws to the North African territories in October of 1940. Learn about the impact of the laws on the region’s Jewish people.
Nazi officials implemented the Jewish badge as a key element in their plan to persecute and eventually destroy the Jewish population of Europe. Learn more
Learn about US journalists, including Edward Murrow, William Shirer, and Dorothy Thompson, and their impact during the Nazi rise to power and WWII .
The Armenian genocide refers to the physical annihilation of ethnic Armenian Christian people living in the Ottoman Empire from spring 1915 through autumn 1916. There were approximately 1.5 million Armenians living in the Empire. At least 664,000 and possibly as many as 1.2 million died during the genocide. Armenians call these events Medz Yeghern (the great crime) or Aghet (catastrophe). The Armenian Genocide The origin of the term genocide and its codification in international law have their roots in…
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.
Explore definitions, connotations, and evolving considerations when using the term bystanders in the range of behaviors and motivations during the Holocaust.
Iranian diplomat Abdol Hossein Sardari gave critical assistance to Iranian Jews in occupied France (1940-1944) to protect them from Nazi persecution.
Blood libels were false allegations that Jews used the blood of non-Jewish children in rituals. Nazi propagandists used this false charge in their antisemitic propaganda.
Before the Nazis seized power in Germany in 1933, Europe had a richly diverse set of Jewish cultures. Learn more about the Jewish population of Europe.
Before the Nazi rise to power in 1933, Europe had a vibrant, established, and diverse Jewish culture. By 1945, two out of every three European Jews had been killed.
German policies varied from country to country, including direct, brutal occupation and reliance upon collaborating regimes. Italy was a long-time ally of Nazi Germany.
Of the millions of children who suffered persecution at the hands of the Nazis and their Axis partners, a small number wrote diaries and journals that have survived.
Before the Nazi rise to power, the countries of Europe had varied and vibrant Jewish communities. By 1945, two out of every three European Jews had been killed.
A variety of non-Jewish groups and individuals resisted the Nazi regime, both in Germany and in German-occupied territory. Learn more.
Germany started World War II in Europe on September 1, 1939, by invading Poland. War would continue until 1945. Learn more about key events in the history of WWII.
General Terms Agudat Israel (In Yiddish, Agudas Yisroel) Political party founded in Kattowitz in Poland in 1912 to represent Orthodox Jews. Although the founding conference of the primary political part of Orthodox Jewry took place in May of 1912, the serious organization of Agudat Israel in Poland began in 1916. It was internal Jewish developments, rather than external factors, which spurred the anti-Zionist Orthodox to organize politically for the first time. Agudat Israel represented Jews who wished…
The Axis powers invaded Yugoslavia on April 6, 1941. Learn about the Axis invasion and partition, collaboration, and the fate of Jewish people living in Yugoslavia.
Charged with managing the mass deportation of Jews to ghettos and killing centers, Adolf Eichmann was a key figure in the "Final Solution."
Between 1933 and 1945, Nazi Germany and its allies established more than 44,000 camps and other incarceration sites (including ghettos). The perpetrators used these locations for a range of purposes, including forced labor, detention of people dee...
Learn about the Flossenbürg camp from its establishment until liberation in April 1945, including conditions, forced labor, subcamps, and death marches.
Forced labor, often pointless, humiliating, without proper equipment, clothing, nourishment, or rest, was a core feature in the Nazi camp system from its beginnings in 1933.
Learn about France during the Holocaust and WWII, the liberation of France, postwar trials, and the legacy of Vichy France’s collaboration with Nazi Germany.
Hermann Ludwig Maas, a Protestant pastor in Heidelberg, Germany, was a rescuer and clergyman who stood in solidarity with the Jewish community.
Though nominally independent, Slovakia was highly dependent on Nazi Germany after the dismemberment of Czechoslovakia. In November 1940, Slovakia joined the Axis when its leaders signed the Tripartite Pact. In fulfillment of the requirements of the Axis partnership, Slovakia participated in the invasion of the Soviet Union in June 1941 and declared war on Britain and the United States in December 1941. Slovakia was also the first Axis partner to consent to the deportation of its Jewish residents in the…
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