Oral History Interview with Ina Rothschild

Ina Rothschild describes her life, education, and work in Germany after World War I; life through Hitler’s rise to power; experiencing changes in Jewish life after 1933 and the effects of certain events on the Jewish community and Jewish interactions with gentiles; Elsa Jaeckel’s husband, who was a gentile, refusing to divorce her and suffering the consequences; many instances of aid and acts of kindness by gentiles; Mrs. Rothschild and her husband running a Jewish orphanage in Esslingen am Neckar from 1933 to 1942 when they were deported; how the orphanage was ransacked on November 9, 1938; her husband being beaten, arrested, and then released to care for the displaced orphans; what happened to the children in their care; Mrs. Jaeckel having to work for the Gestapo with 600 other Jewish women who had gentile husbands; conditions for couples in mixed marriages and living through air raids in Frankfurt; avoiding the transport to Theresianstadt because her husband bribed a former SA man to let her hide in his house; hiding in the attic until the Americans arrived in 1945; the Rothschilds returning to Stuttgart after the closing of the orphanage and their lives, including her work in an old age home and her attempts to care for Jewish children; how many of the children, especially those with disabilities, were deported and killed at Ravensbrück; the Rothschilds being deported to an old age home in Theresienstadt on August 22, 1942; the journey and their arrival at Theresienstadt; the brutal treatment and living conditions in the camp and the improvement after the International Red Cross supervised the institution; seeing Reinhard Heydrich shoot Jewish prisoners; Mrs. Rothschild’s work as a nurse and her husband’s death in July 1944; how many inmates killed themselves; Mrs. Rothschild’s attempts to care for newborn babies; volunteering to care for 50 young Dutch children with typhoid fever together with a Jewish doctor; the children surviving and being adopted after the war; being transported to Switzerland with 600 people in February 1945; and their immigrations to the United States (Mrs. Jaeckel arrived in 1957 and Mrs. Rothschild arrived in 1947).

Date: 11/10/1981
Interviewer: Fred Stamm
Interviewee: Ina Rothschild
Language: English
Subject: Antisemitism--Germany.
Child concentration camp inmates--Care.
Concentration camp inmates--Suicidal behavior.
Forced labor.
Hiding places--Germany.
Holocaust survivors.
Holocaust, Jewish (1939-1945)--Germany--Personal narratives.
Interfaith marriage--Germany.
Jewish orphanages--Germany--Esslingen am Neckar.
Jewish women in the Holocaust.
Jews--Legal status, laws, etc.--Germany.
Jews--Social life and customs.
People with disabilities--Nazi persecution--Germany.
Typhoid fever.
Women concentration camp inmates.
World War, 1939-1945--Conscript labor--Germany.
World War, 1939-1945--War work--Germany.
World War, 1939-1945--Women--Germany.
Women--Personal narratives.
Darmstadt (Germany)
Esslingen am Neckar (Germany)
Frankfurt am Main (Germany)
Germany--Social conditions--1933-1945.
Höchst im Odenwald (Germany)
Terezín (Ústecký kraj, Czech Republic)
Rothschild, Ina, 1902-1985.
Jaeckel, Elsa, 1903-1997.
Red Cross and Red Crescent.
Theresienstadt (Concentration camp)
Location: Darmstadt, Germany
Hesse, Germany
Esslingen am Neckar, Germany
Stuttgart, Germany
Bad Cannstatt, Germany
Frankfurt am Main, Germany
Terezin, Czechia
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