1933 Hitler gains power

In January 1933, Adolf Hitler gained power. Nobody was prepared for the brutal lawless behaviour which immediately followed. Franz Hermann, Ernst's best friend, who enjoyed a ministerial appointment, was taken to a concentration camp and so severely beaten that he never recovered. Signs went up in Berlin to boycott Jewish shops. Ernst Goldschmidt was so enraged that he tore them down. He was arrested and taken to the Alexander Platz (Alexander Place) Police Station. Being a man of courage, who had been awarded the Iron Cross during the war, he told these young Nazi policemen that while he was fighting for them in the trenches, they were lying in their cradles in nappies. It worked and they let him go. [1]     On the 8th of August 1933, Lore Goldschmidt received her first dismissal notice asking her to reply within three days to confirm that she was a non-Aryan person. [2] The notice stated that "all relevant laws" had been passed on the 7th of April. On the 29th of August came the dismissal notice [3] followed by a final notice on the 26th of September [4] . It was signed by the Prussian Minister for Science, the Arts and Education. It stated that her employment would be terminated on the 30th of November and that she would be on leave until then. She would not be entitled to any pension. The only reason cited for her dismissal was her nichtarische Abstammung (non-Aryan descent). Although aware that this would happen, the dismissal came as a dreadful shock. Not only had she worked very hard to obtain the maximum qualifications for teaching in the public service, she had enjoyed being part of that service. She had spent many hours of her own time producing plays and Singspiele (musicals) to instill a love of learning in her pupils. Only her Headmistress, M. Rosenov, had the courage to send her a card with thanks for all her endeavours  [5] .  Lore and Ernst discussed emigration but the fact that Ernst was forty eight years old, spoke no English and had a profession that could not be practised in any English speaking country made them reluctant to take that path. Ernst also hoped that the German people would come to their senses.  On the 10th of October 1933 [6] , Lore Goldschmidt received permission to teach individual groups of maximum 5 persons provided that they were also of nichtarischer Abstammung (non-aryan descent).  Leonore Goldschmidt had to pay 3 Marks for this permission and this permission had to be renewed yearly! It enabled her to offer her services to Frau Tony Lessler, who had been running a small private school at 18 Kronbergerstrasse, Berlin- Grunewald, for some years. Originally, the school was a Waldschule (woodland school) designed for children whose health was not strong enough to attend the public school system. The Montessori program, which the author attended from 1930 to 1932, was used in the lower school. But when Nazi regulations demanded that all Aryan children and teachers leave the school, because Tony Lessler, the headmistress, was Jewish, it became a private Jewish school. [7] Lore taught at this school from October 1933 until the 1st of January 1935. [8]    

1934 The murder of Alexander Zweig, LoreÕs cousin

On the 7th of March 1934, Lore's mother, Jenny Zweig, died from a stroke. [9] Lore inherited one half of Ro§strasse 18, a house in Forst/ Lausitz, which had been in the family since 1913. [10] The other half went to her older sister, Martha. [11]   Her mother's natural death was followed by a most dreadful murder. During the night between the 30th of June and the 1st of July 1934, the "Night of the Long Knives" Lore's cousin, Dr.med.Alexander Zweig and his wife were arrested and subsequently murdered. Alexander was the son of Karl Zweig. At the time of the murder, he had been a practising physician who owned a sanatorium in Hirschberg, Riesengebirge now Jelenia Gora, (Poland), Sudeten Mountains. In Schlesien alone, over 80 people were murdered on that night. Nazi ring leader, Udo von Woyrsch, the SS GruppenfŸhrer  [12] , gave the orders. In 1956, he was sentenced to 10 years in jail but served only 2 years. [13] The actual murderers were the ObertruppfŸhrer Erich Bšttger and SS UnterscharfŸhrer Otto Gasse who received 8 and 4 year sentences, respectively in 1951. [14]   The reason for these murders was not given in the court procedures. Because the Zweigs had no children, Lore, Alexander's favourite cousin, inherited a considerable sum of money and a Cremona violin. It seemed appropriate to devote the money to the opening of the Jewish boarding school, which had been in her thoughts since her dismissal from the public service and her subsequent visit to the small town in southern Germany. She began serious planning while still teaching at the Lessler Schule.  

[1] Father's return clearly remembered by author

[2] 10/8/1933, from the Oberpräsident der Provinz Brandenburg und Berlin, Schulabteilung

[3] 29/8/1933 dismissal notice, Preu§ische Minister fŸr Wissenschaft etc, Signed in Vertretung, Dr.Stuckart

[4] 26/9/1933 financial settlement to 30/11/1933, Oberpräsident Provinz Brandenburg und Berlin

[5] 9/11/1933, acard from M.Rosenov

[6] Unterrichtserlaubnisschein, signed Schulrat, Dr Spanier, Berlin Wilmersdorf

[7] Wilmersdorf Museum, 1992, Hier ist kein Bleiben länger.

[8] To whom it may concern, 10/11/1949 by Tony Lessler, in possession of the author

[9] Death Certificate, Nr.22, Berlin-Nikolassee, 8/3/1934

[10] Grundbuch, Forst Lausitz, 1913, page 77

[11] Will of Jenny Zweig, Amtsgericht Forst, 27/6/1935

[12] Letter to author 10/3/1997 from the Staatsanwaltschaft, OsnabrŸck

[13] Leo Beck Yearbook, 1970, page 151, Resistance of German Jews

[14] Report, B Kehne, Staatsarchiv-os. Niedersachsen