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The Aftermath of Kristallnacht

Page history last edited by PBworks 12 years, 8 months ago

The days and months proceeding Kristallnacht was not easy for Jews. On Kristallnacht and the days following, Jews were still being gathered and sent to concentration camps. In addition Germans were constantly coming out with new laws against the Jews. The new laws restricted Jews from being involved in economic businesses, attending German universities, and banning Jews from public parks. To make life harder Jews had to pay for all the damages done during Kristallnacht. All of these actions were the Germans way of depriving Jews of their remaining rights they had. The continuing anti- Semitism against the Jews continued into WWII, Where the worst was to come for the Jews. Germans were planning death camps to send Jews to where they would be humiliated, had forced labor, and put to death in cruel ways (Pehle).  


 For my family the aftermath of Kristallnacht brought many worries.  My Opa having been taken to a concentration camp in Berlin left the family waiting for news. There had been no contact and the family had to live with constant worry and lack of knowledge on the situation. Five weeks after my Opa had been taken he was returned to his family in Hamburg, Germany, under the condition he leaves the country. This condition was made with all Jews that had been released from a concentration camp. Leaving a country and being allowed into another one was not easy. At the end of 1938 no countries wanted the Jews. My family had their eyes on moving to America, but America was not letting just anyone into their country. America had a certain quota of people they would allow in the country. In addition if someone wanted to come to America they needed to be sponsored and the people sponsoring them had to vouge for these immigrants that they would not become a burden on the American government. My family was able to get out of Germany in 1940, because of a brother and an uncle my Opa had in Texas. My family‚Äôs relatives in America were able to provide visas for my family to legally enter America. My families journey to America could not be a straight one since Germany and England were already at war. No boats were leaving from Germany so my family had to take a couple of trains to Italy, where they got one a boat there that took them safely to America.


Although My Opa and Oma my have been relieved to be able to obtain American visas and leave Germany, it was not that easy. For my Oma, by going to America, she was leaving behind her family. My Oma knew on that day in February 1940, that she may be saying good bye to her family for the last time. My Oma found out in later years that her mother and her family had been sent to concentration camp where they were killed. For my Oma living in America was not easy having left her family behind. She had saved her children from the Nazis, but she had difficulty leaving her family behind,.My Oma always felt a great amount of guilt about lhaving to leave her family in Germany.





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