Exodus: Flight from Nazi Germany

After Kristallnacht

After the Nazi party rose to power in Germany in 1933, German Jews faced increased persecution with each passing year. Although many Jews sought to flee Nazi oppression, most hoped that Nazi rule and its virulent anti-Semitism would be a passing phase.

It was not until after Kristallnacht, the terrible pogrom of November 1938, that the real exodus began -- Kristallnacht, the Night of Broken Glass, when throughout Germany and Austria, business and shops owned by Jews were looted and destroyed, when synagogues were burned, when Jewish men were arrested en masse, and when, in its aftermath, the Nazi government required Jewish communities to pay for the destruction themselves.

dachau postcard
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This postcard was sent from Dachau from by Munich pediatrician Dr. Ludwig Kaumheimer to his wife, Hilde. She sent a letter to the Gestapo, pleading for her husband’s release and informing them that he had served in WW I and was a recipient of the Iron Cross. She was afraid he would be too modest to mention it.
men marching
A mass arrest of Jewish men in Baden Baden.

dreifuss release
Ferdinand Dreifuss's release document from Concentration Camp Buchenwald, signed by its commandant.

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