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Stamped and handwritten lettersheet to Amsterdam
Information Provided by Michael D. Bulmash:
Westerbork, located in Drenthe Province in the Netherlands, began in 1939 as a camp for German refugees attempting to escape persecution in Nazi Germany. The first refugees arrived in October of that year. Some had been passengers on the ill-fated SS St. Louis (please see 20201.4a-d and 2016.1.15) Westerbork continued to function as a refugee camp supervised by the Dutch after the German occupation in May 1940 since all Dutch Jews were concentrated in Amsterdam. Administration of the camp was transferred to the Germans in 1942 at which time it functioned as a transit camp for Jews awaiting deportation to the extermination camps, Auschwitz or Sobibor.
While Westerbork functioned as a transit center for Jews prior to deportation, there would also be a longer-term population of mostly German Jews to create some stability in the camp. They would act as camp employees or Jewish council members and would not for the time being subject to deportation.
Mr. Weinberg was one of the German refugees-from Emden, Hanover, Germany- at Westerbork. He was born on January 21, 1900 and he notes his barracks number as 40 b. He thanks Mr. Polack for packages received. He would be deported, and his date of death is given by Yad Vashem as February 28, 1945. The fate of Mr. Polack is unknown.
11 1/4 x 8 1/2"
Jakob Weinberg, M. Polack, Westerbork, Amsterdam
"Lettersheet from Jakob Weinberg in Westerbork Transit Camp to M. Polack in Amsterdam" (1944). Bulmash Family Holocaust Collection. 2021.1.26.