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‘THE UNITED STATES HIGH COMMISSIONER’ is typewritten at the top center of the document, photograph is stapled at bottom left quadrant with signature spanning from paper to photo to paper.
Information Provided by Michael D. Bulmash:
Throughout the 1930s and World War II, the United States government under the Roosevelt Administration and other Western Nations closed their doors to Jewish refugees fleeing Europe. Jewish flight to Shanghai is well-known, a city which did not require entry visas until 1939. Less familiar is the asylum provided by the government of the Philippines to more than 1,300 Jews fleeing Nazi Germany, and the support offered by its president Manuel Quezon, who asked all Filipinos to welcome them and help with assistance. A refugee committee was established and American Jewish organizations such as the Joint Distribution Committee helped with funding. Contributions were also received from relatives of the refugees to increase the prospect of refugees being admitted. Indeed, the process of admission was selective and certain criteria had to be met in terms of desirable professions that would benefit Filipinos. The process of admission was selective. By the end of the war many surviving refugees would migrate to the U.S.
Adele Bertha Levy was a 55-year-old German Jewish woman, widowed, from Hanover who fled Nazi Germany and found refuge in the Philippines. She was a resident of Manila.
She was seeking to go to the United States to be with her children in California. Stateless and without a passport, she received in Manila an “Affidavit in Lieu of a Passport '' on October 27, 1941 by a passport agent in Manila. Her photograph is on the Affidavit along with personal characteristics. The visa (verso) - No.1150 - was issued on November 10, 1941, under a statute related to quotas on immigrants. She was able to leave Manila November 25, on the SS President Coolidge with a brief stop in Hawaii on the 17th of December - just 10 days after Pearl Harbor was bombed by the Japanese. The Japanese invaded the Philippines on December 8th. She reached the US (San Francisco) on December 30, 1941.
[Related item: 2022.1.38a-e]
12 x 8"
Adele Bertha Levy, Stateless, Refugees, Philippines, Shanghai, Manuel Quezon
"Affidavit for Stateless Refugee Adele Bertha Levy" (1941). Bulmash Family Holocaust Collection. 2022.1.37.