Bijkomende meta info
- This collection consists of: multiple press clippings collected by Annie Sliwka on the Aide aux Israélites Victimes de Guerre (AIVG) and the Wezembeek-Oppem children's home ; multiple databases created by Annie Sliwka, using lists and registries kept by the AIVG, the Jewish Social Services and children's homes run by the Association of Jews in Belgium ; photos of rescuers such as Brigitte Jacobsberg, caretaker at the Wezembeek-Oppem home ; recordings of the international gathering of children formerly housed in the homes of the AIVG organised in Brussels on 27-29 September 2002 ; recordings of Les Enfants sans Ombre and psychiatrist Siegi Hirsch from 2002 ; photocopies of documents illustrating Annie Sliwka’s family history obtained from various archives ; an interview with Annie Sliwka conducted by the staff of the Université Libre de Bruxelles on 15 January 1997.
- Annie Sliwka
- The VHS tapes and CDs in this collection have been physically stored in the Kazerne Dossin audio-visual collection.
- Annie Sliwka, Private collection, Belgium ; State Archives of Belgium in Brussels, Archives Service for War Victims in Brussels, Cegesoma in Brussels
- 202 items (photos, databases, recordings, newspaper clippings)
Anna alias Annie Sliwka was born on 5 December 1931 in Anderlecht, Brussels, as the daughter of diamond dealer Abraham Sliwka (born on 28 May 1895 in Dombrowa, Poland) and his wife Rosine de Jong (born on 7 October 1900 in Anderlecht, Belgium). Abraham’s parents had sent him to Belgium in 1908, when he was only 13 years old, to study. In 1919 he had married Rosine who was of Dutch decent. Before having Annie, Rosine had given birth to two sons: Simon, who passed away when he was four months old, and Joseph, born on 12 August 1923 in Anderlecht. The Sliwka family was very liberal: they did not celebrate Jewish holidays, speak Yiddish or eat kosher. Abraham worked as a diamond dealer to provide for his family.
When Nazi-Germany invaded Belgium on 10 May 1940, the Sliwka family lived at Rue Joseph Dupont 2 in Brussels. After trying to flee south and reaching Toulouse, the family returned to Brussels later in 1940. They obeyed the anti-Jewish decrees in 1941-1942. Having become the caretaker of the synagogue at Rue Joseph Dupont and therefore an employee of the Association of Jews in Belgium, Abraham Sliwka, his wife and children were initially protected against deportation. However, In the night of 9 on 10 December 1942, unidentified German intruders broke into the synagogue, threatening the Sliwka family and destroying the interior of the building. Abraham and Rosine then decided to send their daughter Annie into hiding. She was hidden with the Salvation Army until April 1943, after which she was taken across the Belgian-French border by a Suisse smuggler who didn’t know she was Jewish. Annie was hidden on the Mallet-Boisson family farm in Marigné, France, as Jeanine Decorde.
In September 1943, Abraham Sliwka and Rosine de Jong were arrested. Neither survived deportation from the Dossin barracks to Auschwitz-Birkenau via Transport XXIII on 15 January 1944. Since her parents could no longer pay the Suisse trafficker and since the Haute-Savoie region was now occupied by German instead of Italian troops, Annie was sent back by train to Belgium in November 1943. She was sent into hiding with a family in Zelzate by the Jewish Defence Committee as Liliane Monfort. When she ran away due to the harsh living conditions in Zelzate, Annie was placed with the Desmets family in Molenbeek, Brussels. There she survived the war. After spending time with her maternal aunt Eva de Jong, the Aide aux Israélites Victimes de Guerre or AIVG placed Annie in one of their official homes – first in Wezembeek-Oppem and later in Les Hirondelles – where she spent her teen years. No other family members could be located since Annie also lost her maternal grandmother Anna Wurms who didn’t survive deportation from the Dossin barracks to Auschwitz-Birkenau via Transport XI on 26 September 1942. In the 1950s Annie got married. She has children and grandchildren. Since 2008 she has volunteered at several archival institutes dedicated to the study of the Second World War, creating research databases.
- From the 1990s onwards Annie Sliwka created several valuable databases when working as a volunteer for multiple museums and documentation centres in Belgium, including the Jewish Museum, Cegesoma and the Archives Service for War Victims. In 2019 Annie Sliwka kindly donated a copy of her research collection to Kazerne Dossin.
- Annie Sliwka, 2019