The documents in the Arolsen Archives help document the paths of persecution of people who were murdered. But they also show how survivors set about finding their feet and making a new life for themselves after 1945. The inquiries we receive on a daily basis give us insights into the personal fates of individuals. We would like to share some of their stories with you.

Biographical documents and general documents from the Arolsen Archives provide the starting point for the web-docs in “Living History”. Additional resources are also included, such as information about the time before the persecution began and photos given to us by family members on their visits to the archive, for example. It is extremely important to the families that memories of their loved ones be kept alive.

Returning to their home country was unthinkable
Returning to their home country was unthinkable

They were forced to emigrate: Selma Simon-Katz, born in Arolsen, her husband Karl, and their four daughters had to leave their home country Germany to flee from National Socialist persecution. The “St Louis” passenger ship was supposed to take them to freedom in Cuba – but the refugees were refused entry.

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