The Samuel Family

»Deported to their Deaths« – panel 28 – Biographies

Arnold Samuel (1880-1942) and his wife Johanna, née Levi (1874-1942), ran a flourishing butcher’s shop with their sons Heinz (1908-1941/42) and Paul (b. 1905 - ?) in Hagen near Neustadt am Rübenberge. Their clientele reached all the way to Hannover.

In 1932, about 80% of the village of 450 people voted for the Anti-Semitic parties NSDAP and DNVP. The Samuel family fell into isolation. The bank terminated their loans. Arnold Samuel was deleted from the Register of Tradesmen. In 1937, one of his competitors bought the house and business.

The parents and their son Heinz were deported to Riga. Their son Paul was spared because of his “mixed marriage” but their sister-in-law Ella Samuel (1883-?) was not. She had previously been married to Arnold’s brother but, prior to her deportation, lived in a committed relationship with Jon Meyerstein (1873-?). Meyerstein belonged to the 181 so-called “Aktionsjuden” (Operation Jews) that were arrested in Hannover on November 10th, 1938 (after the Night of Broken Glass). Ella and Jon were forced to move to the “Jews’ House Körnerstraße”.

Heinz Samuel was accused of bartering and hanged in Salaspils around his 34th birthday. His parents’ fate is unknown.

Ella Samuel’s last sign of life dates to October 1944. Her partner’s day of death is also unknown.

Paul Samuel, who was interned in several camps following the end of 1944, returned to Hagen after the end of the war. He could only reclaim his family home after a prolonged legal battle. His butcher’s shop could no longer build on its former success: the old prejudices against “Jew-Paul” (German: Judenpaul) persisted in the village.

Picture credits

Private Collection, Heinz Samuel


Exhibition: Deported to their Deaths
Duration: December 15th, 2011 to January 27th, 2012
Location: Neues Rathaus Hannover, Bürgersaal
Panel: 28 from 39 – Biographies
Size: 650 x 2050 mm
Technique: Digital print on Alu-Dibond