Bill’s Maternal Grandparents, Aunt & Uncle who Found Safe Haven in Portugal

Bill's Unlce Max and Aunt Hilde Dreifusss

Bill’s Unlce Max and Aunt Hilde Dreifusss

Bill's Aunt Hilde and Uncle Max Dreifuss

Bill’s Aunt Hilde and Uncle Max Dreifuss

 

 

Bill's Uncle Max and Aunt Hilde Dreifuss

Bill’s Uncle Max and Aunt Hilde Dreifuss

Uncle Max in the U.S. Army Quartermaster  Corps

Uncle Max in the U.S. Army Quartermaster Corps

 

 

Bill's Aunt Hilde Dreifuss Thal

Bill’s Aunt Hilde Dreifuss Thal

 

 

Bill's Aunt Hilde Dreifuss Thal

Bill’s Aunt Hilde Dreifuss Thal

Bill Maternal Grandparents: Sophie and Lothar Midas

Bill’s Maternal Grandparents: Sophie and Lothar Midas

 

Bill Maternal Grandparents: Sophie and Lothar Midas

Bill’s Maternal Grandparents: Sophie and Lothar Midas

Bill Maternal Grandparents: Sophie and Lothar Midas

Bill’s Maternal Grandparents: Sophie and Lothar Midas

Bill’s Maternal Grandparents: Sophie and Lothar Midas

Bill’s Maternal Grandparents: Sophie and Lothar Midas

 

Sophie and Lothar Midas with their 3 daughters. Elsbeth, Auguste and Hilde (l to r)

Sophie and Lothar Midas with their 3 daughters. Elsbeth, Auguste and Hilde (l to r)

 

Konigswarterstrasse 74, the apartment building where Bill's maternal grandparents lived before the war. Bill's grandfather is standing with his 3 daughters on the middle balcony.

Konigswarterstrasse 74, the apartment building where Bill’s maternal grandparents lived before the war. Bill’s father is standing with the 3 Midas sisters on the middle balcony.

 

 

 

Lothar and Sophie Midas

Lothar and Sophie Midas

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bill's Grandfather Lothar Midas

Bill’s Grandfather Lothar Midas

 

 

 

 

 

 

On Kristallnacht, at the age of 63, Lothar was badly beaten by the Nazis until he signed over his glass factory thereby, forced to give up a long-time very successful family business and an upper middle class way of life.

 

Sophie and Bill
Bill and his maternal grandmother Sophie

Sophie Midas (seated) with Bill's parents, Ernest and Auguste Mohr

Sophie Midas (seated) with Bill’s parents, Ernest and Auguste Mohr

On the left, Bill’s grandfather, Lothar Midas. On the far right, Lothar’s brother, Joseph.

On the left, Bill’s grandfather, Lothar Midas. On the far right, Lothar’s brother, Joseph.

 

 

Bill's Grandmother Sophie Midas

Bill’s Grandmother Sophie Midas

 

 

Bill’s Maternal Grandparents: Sophie and Lothar Midas

Bill’s Maternal Grandparents: Sophie and Lothar Midas

 

An E.L.Lehman truck from the glass factory, owned by Bill's maternal grandfather with his brother, before it was forcibly confiscated by the Nazis.

An J.L.Lehman truck from the glass factory, owned by Bill’s maternal grandfather with his brother, before it was forcibly confiscated by the Nazis.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(Click on image for a larger and sharper picture)

(Click on image for a larger and sharper picture)

Passenger List for Journey from Lisbon to New York (Click on Image to Enlarge)

Passenger List for Journey from Lisbon to New York (Click HERE to Enlarge)

Sophie Midas

Sophie Midas

 

 

 

Bill's Grandmotherr Sophie Midas

Bill’s Grandmother Sophie Midas

 

Sophie Midas

Sophie Midas

The following is an excerpt from Bill’s grandmother Sophie’s eulogy by Rabbi Salamon Faber of the Kew Gardens Anshe Sholom Jewish Center (July 3, 1979):

sophie-41“Mrs. Sophie Midas was a deeply pious woman. She attended religious services regularly on Sabbaths and festivals. I will never forget my feeling of delight every time I noted this stately,’ fine looking woman walking into the Temple, usually accompanied by Gusty, to take a seat among the worshippers. There was a certain vigor in her bearing. She exuded a sense of confidence, quiet dignity, alertness. Had a good sense of humor. Demonstrated curiosity in all sorts of cultural matters. Shared responsibility in everything meaningful that went on in the community – her Synagogue, Sisterhood, Hadassah, National Council of Jewish Women. She gave of her resources, to the best of her ability, with accurate perception of the dimensions of a given cause. I know, for she often discussed causes with me, trying to evaluate their purpose in the over-all program of Jewish life and communal responsibility. Though modest and reserved, she invariably evoked the impression of an unusually refined personality.”

 

Diamond Ring

The Diamond and Running Scared

When we began this deeply meaningful and satisfying project, I did not make any connection to the diamond in my engagement ring, a gift from Bill’s maternal grandmother Sophie Midas. In the late 30’s, she risked smuggling it out of Germany inside her bra, as she fled to Portugal for safety. She told the members of her family that someday she would give it to her grandson “Billy’s” fiancé.

No one could have imagined that if we fast forwarded, almost 50 years, I would be passionately committed to revealing her family’s story, on a blog, entitled the HAITI JEWISH REFUGEE LEGACY PROJECT.

The ring, smuggled out of Germany during the Shoah, strangely foreshadowed the work I am doing today.

Harriet Mohr
November 27, 2010

Hilde Harry

Aunt Hilde with Uncle Harry (2nd Husband of Elsbeth, survivor of Auschwitz). Elsbeth’s 1st husband was murdered in Auschwitz. Click HERE to see more photos of Elsbeth  and her first and second husbands.

hilde-tara-bill-harriet    hilde-tara
Harriet, Bill, Tara & Hilde                                          Hilde & Tara @ Yale graduation 2000

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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