Gert (Gerhard) Lilienthal. Collection

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KD_00059_0001 : Judaica concerning Jewish emancipation and the German liberal revolution of 1848 ; remains of the looted collection of Berlin banker dr. Heinz Lilienthal, father of the donor.
KD_00059_0002 : Prewar Lilienthal family documents, including vaccination certificates, birth certificates, marriage certificates, documents related to dr. Heinz Lilienthal’s business, a household inventory and household budget.
KD_00059_0003 : Wartime Lilienthal family documents, including three letters sent from the Dossin barracks by Hilda Kirschstein and Minni Marie Fabian, mother and maternal grandmother of the donor, to the donor and Louise Reiche, paternal grandmother of the donor, in 1943.
KD_00059_0004 : Post-war documents certifying the non-hostile status of Gert Lilienthal as a German citizen, papers stating Gert Lilienthal’s employment with the American army and a copy of the death certificate of dr. Heinz Lilienthal, father of the donor.
KD_00059_0005 : Correspondence from the 1960s regarding attempts made by Gert Lilienthal to obtain Belgian nationality, including a short biography.
KD_00059_0006 : Drawings by Gert Lilienthal, donor.
KD_00059_0007 : Two photocopied newspaper clippings, regarding the German invasion in May 1940 and the liberation of Antwerp in September 1944.
KD_00059_0008 : Pre-war and post-war photos of the Lilienthal family, including pictures taken at "Confiserie Lilly" (Lilly Sweets), the family sweets store at Belgiëlei in Antwerp.
KD_00059_0009 : Two manuscripts, dated 1987 ; one containing war-time correspondence between Lilienthal family members in Belgium and France, and one containing Gert Lilienthal's memoires. The manuscripts were not digitized and are available at the Kazerne Dossin documentation centre.
1824-1987
LILIENTHAL Gert, Polizei! Aufmachen! Herinneringen aan de Nazi-terreur en de Duitse bezetting, Edegem, 1993.
Gert (Gerhard) Lilienthal
German, English, Dutch
Latin
KD_00059
folder
8 digitised images (drawings)
Gert (Gerhard) Lilienthal was born in Berlin, Germany, on 24 April 1924. He was the son of Heinz Lilienthal (25/01/1899, Berlin), a banker and doctor in law, and Hilda Kirschstein (28/05/1901, Berlin). Gert’s sister Ruth was born in Berlin on 31 March 1929. In 1933 the family sought refuge in Belgium. They settled in Antwerp, where, in 1934, Gert’s parents opened “Confiserie Lilly”, a sweets store specialized in homemade chocolates.
On 10 May 1940, Heinz Lilienthal was arrested by the Belgian state as a “suspicious foreigner” and was deported to France where he was interned in the Saint-Cyprien and Gurs camps. He did not survive deportation from Pithiviers, France, via Transport 6 to Auschwitz-Birkenau on 17 July 1942.
In January 1941, Gert Lilienthal, his sister Ruth and their mother Hilda Kirschstein had been forced to leave Antwerp and move to the province Limburg. They were allowed to relocate to Schaerbeek, Brussels, in the Fall of 1941. On 3 April 1943, Hilda Kirschstein and her mother, Minnie Marie Fabian, were arrested and taken to the Dossin barracks. Fritz Basch, husband of Hanna Lilienthal, Hilda’s sister-in-law, was working at the camp as the detainee doctor. It is probably thanks to him that Hilda became a member of the Jewish workers (Werkleute) at the barracks. She and her mother were stricken from the list of Transport XX. However, at the end of the Summer of 1943, Fritz Basch fell from grace and the camp commander added him and all his family members, including Hilda Kirschstein and Minnie Marie Fabian to the deportation list of Transport XXII A, which left for Auschwitz-Birkenau on 20 September 1943. All family members perished.
Gert Lilienthal and his sister Ruth coincidentally avoided arrest and went into hiding. Gert took on the false name Louis De Mulder and was housed in Deurne, Antwerp, by misses Beckmann, the widow of the partly-Jewish mister Löwenstein. Both Gert and Ruth survived the war, as did their paternal grandmother, Louise Reiche. In November 1944, Gert married Roxanne Löw, daughter of misses Beckmann-Löwenstein. From liberation until 1946 Gert was employed by the American army, afterwards he started work at the Diamond Office. In 1946, Roxanne gave birth to their only child Arthur Heinz Lilienthal whom would became a musician. It wasn’t until 1969 that Gert Lilienthal received Belgian citizenship. He passed away in 1993.
The Lilienthal family gave files 1 until 6 to Ward Adriaens, co-author of "Polizei! Aufmachen!", the biography of Gert Lilienthal. He subsequently donated the originals to Kazerne Dossin. In 1996 the Lilienthal family donated original photos, and copies of newspaper clippings and two manuscripts (files 7 until 9) to the Jewish Museum of Deportation and Resistance, predecessor of Kazerne Dossin.
Ward Adriaens, 2010

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