Rescue and Resistance Some Jews survived the "Final Solution," the Nazi plan to kill the Jews of Europe, by hiding or escaping from German-controlled Europe. Most non-Jews neither aided nor hindered the "Final Solution." Relatively few people helped Jews escape. Those who did aid Jews were motivated by opposition to Nazi racism, by compassion, or by religious or moral principle. In a few rare instances, entire communities as well as individuals helped save Jews. They did so at tremendous risk. In many…
Hanne's family owned a photographic studio. In October 1940, she and other family members were deported to the Gurs camp in southern France. In September 1941, the Children's Aid Society (OSE) rescued Hanne and she hid in a children's home in Le Chambon-sur-Lignon. Her mother perished in Auschwitz. In 1943, Hanne obtained false papers and crossed into Switzerland. She married in Geneva in 1945 and had a daughter in 1946. In 1948, she arrived in the United States.
The cover of a diary written by Elizabeth Kaufmann while living with the family of Pastor André Trocmé in Le Chambon-sur-Lignon. Le Chambon-sur-Lignon, France, 1940–41.
Page from a diary written by Elizabeth Kaufmann while living with the family of Pastor André Trocmé in Le Chambon-sur-Lignon. Le Chambon-sur-Lignon, France, 1940–41.
Photo of Peter Feigl, a Jewish child hidden in the Protestant village Le Chambon-sur-Lignon. Le Chambon, France, August 9, 1943.
Elizabeth and her family were in Paris when war began. As the Germans advanced in 1940, she and her mother fled southward. Elizabeth eventually reached Le Chambon, where she helped care for children sheltered by the town's pastor, Andre Trocme, and his wife. In late 1941 her father was among 1,000 intellectuals who received special US visas from President Franklin D. Roosevelt. The family escaped from France in 1942 on one of the last passenger ships to cross the Atlantic during the war.
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...
Page from the diary of Peter Feigl, a Jewish child hidden in the Protestant village of Le Chambon-sur-Lignon. The photos show his parents, who perished in a concentration camp. The text is in French and German. Le Chambon-sur-Lignon, France, 1942-1943.
SS Chief Heinrich Himmler was chief architect of the "Final Solution." Learn more about Himmler, one of the most powerful men after Hitler in Nazi Germany.
Hermine Orsi sheltered a number of Jews in her home and helped others reach refuge in Le Chambon-sur-Lignon. Yad Vashem recognized her as "Righteous Among the Nations." Marseille, France, 1940.
Learn about the diverse Jewish population of North Africa on the eve of World War II.
Hanne was born to a Jewish family in the German city of Karlsruhe. Her father, Max, was a photographer. When he died in 1925, Hanne's mother, Ella, continued to maintain his studio. In 1930 Hanne began public school. 1933-39: In April 1933 Hanne's family's studio, like the other Jewish businesses in Karlsruhe, was plastered with signs during the anti-Jewish boycott: "Don't buy from Jews." At school, a classmate made Hanne so furious with her taunts that she ripped her sweater. After the November 1938…
Henri Barbusse was a French author who wrote pacifist and socialist works. In 1933, his writings were burned under the Nazi regime. Learn more.
The 20th Armored Division participated in major WWII campaigns and is recognized for liberating the Dachau concentration camp in 1945.
The 65th Infantry Division participated in major WWII campaigns and is recognized for liberating a subcamp of Flossenbürg in 1945.
The 99th Infantry Division participated in major WWII campaigns and is recognized for liberating subcamps of the Dachau concentration camp in 1945.
The 12th Armored Division participated in major WWII campaigns and is recognized for liberating a subcamp of Dachau in 1945.
Father Jacques (Lucien Bunel) provided refuge to Jews and others at a school in Avon, France. Imprisoned in several Nazi camps for his activities, he died soon after liberation.
Describes Pastor Andre Trocme and his wife Magda Trocme
In May 1939, the St. Louis set sail from Germany to Cuba. Most of the passengers, fleeing Nazi Germany, were denied entry. Learn more about their fates.
During World War II, the Nazis deported between seven and nine million Europeans, mostly to Germany. Within months of Germany's surrender in May 1945, the Allies repatriated to their home countries more than six million displaced persons (DPs; wartime refugees). Between 1.5 million and two million DPs refused repatriation. Most Jewish survivors, who had survived concentration camps or had been in hiding, were unable or unwilling to return to eastern Europe because of postwar antisemitism and the…
The 69th Infantry Division participated in major WWII campaigns and is recognized for liberating the Leipzig-Thekla subcamp of Buchenwald in 1945.
The 71st Infantry Division participated in major WWII campaigns and is recognized for liberating the Gunskirchen subcamp of Mauthausen in 1945.
Samuel's parents immigrated to Palestine when he was very young. They lived in Rishon le Zion, the first settlement in Palestine founded by Jews from outside of Palestine. After graduating from high school, Samuel became active in a movement challenging the British mandate in Palestine. 1933-39: Samuel was expelled from Palestine in 1936 because of his outspoken criticism of the British mandate. He went to France and then to Spain just after the civil war began. Samuel fought for three years with the…
Rescue efforts during the Holocaust ranged from the isolated actions of individuals to organized networks both small and large.
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