Aryanization refers to the expropriation of property and businesses from Jews under the Third Reich. Beginning with the "Aryan paragraph" in German legislation, and enshrined in the Nuremberg laws of 1935, Jews were to be excluded from citizenship and lose their legal rights, including the ability to own their own businesses. Jewish business owners were compelled to sell their establishments to non-Jews for far less than the value of their goods.
One way to see the history of this transfer of property to "Aryans" under the Third Reich is to examine Francotyp machine cards. Francotyp machines were used to apply physical evidence of postage to mailed matter. These devices have been used since 1923 as a franking system for mailing purposes. The card is a service record of these machines and shows the mail history of the company in question, and, in this case, the changes occurring to the corporate name and address both before and subsequent to Aryanization.
--Michael D. Bulmash, K1966
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Francotyp Card Tracing History and Aryanization of Kantorowicz-Kahlbaum Liquor and Wine Firm During Third Reich
Front: “Weinbrand Kahlbaum Edel” in red at top right; three adhered stamps, two hand stamps, all red. Back: two adhered stamps with typewritten and handwritten text starting with date 27.12.29.
Information Provided by Michael D. Bulmash: Francotyp machines have been used since 1923 as a franking system for mailing purposes. This card is a record of servicing these Francotyp machines, and shows the mail history of the company in question, and in this case, the changes occurring to the corporate name and address both before and subsequent to arianization during the Third Reich. Kantorowicz-Kahlbaum had been a world-renowned liquor and wine manufacturer located in Poznan, Poland since 1823. As a Jewish-owned firm, it was ultimately Aryanized and management was given over to representatives of the Reich in 1939, after the German army marched into Poland. On the reverse side of the card is the new name of the company: the name Kantorowicz was eliminated from the label.
24 envelopes with red circular postmark from Berlin
Information Provided by Michael D. Bulmash: A collection of meter marks (made from the francotyp machine) from the department store Wertheim, including 11 from 1931 to 1935 for “special sales” (e.g. Christmas, travel, swimming, etc.). The Aryanization of Wertheim is likewise expressed in changes to the meter marks: the slogans show AWAG (Allgemeine Warenhandels-Gesellschaft A.G.) and AWAG (vormals WERTHEIM). Aryanization notwithstanding, the Wertheim name was continued during this period of time to maintain the customer base. Meter marks show Deutsche Reichspost AWAG for travel, summer, etc. Eventually the Nazi swastika appears within the indicia of the meter mark.Wertheimwas one of the largest department store chains in Germany with four stores in Berlin. It had been founded by Georg Wertheim. It was subjected to Nazi Aryanization policies during the 1930’s. In an effort to avoid loss of their stores through what was tantamount to institutionalized theft, the Wertheim family attempted to make Georg’s wife Ursula the principal shareholder since she was acceptable as “Aryan” under the laws. However, even a divorce was not enough to prevent the inevitable loss of their business, and the Wertheim family were forced to sell their firm to an Aryan company, after which it was renamed AWAG. Georg Wertheim died in 1939.
Front: White envelope with series of red hand stamps on top. Bottom left has printed Victor Wolf symbol in teal, bottom right has address writen in black ink.
Information Provided by Michael D. Bulmash:
Dreiturm (Three Towers) had been a German company owned by Max Wolf, a Jewish businessman. In 1933 Dreiturm was confiscated by the Nazis. At this point Mr. Wolf was counseled by his tax accountant to place the company in Aryan hands so that he could enjoy a "peaceful future." In July 1934 Dreiturm was officially Aryanized by the state and then "purchased" by the Aryan firm Sidol for a fraction of its worth. Max Wolf and his family ultimately emigrated to England. The name Dreiturm Seife in Steinau is kept in place, but Wolf was no longer on the logo. Instead, the name of the washing powder produced by the firm, "Hexawa," was placed on the label on the "archive card," in spite of the fact that part of the old name Dreiturm had been retained. The Sidol Group was known to have worked on armaments production during the War. Many of Sidol's workers were forced laborers, especially Russian prisoners of war.
Front: Tan card. with various pasted stamps on top and bottom left, and a red hand stamp on bottom right. Printed lines and blanks, with information written in, and crossed out in black. Back: Red and orange hand stamps on top left.
Information Provided by Michael D. Bulmash: Dreiturm (Three Towers) had been a German company owned by Max Wolf, a Jewish businessman. In 1933 Dreiturm was confiscated by the Nazis. At this point Mr. Wolf was counseled by his tax accountant to place the company in Aryan hands so that he could enjoy a "peaceful future." In July 1934 Dreiturm was officially Aryanized by the state and then "purchased" by the Aryan firm Sidol for a fraction of its worth. Max Wolf and his family ultimately emigrated to England. The name Dreiturm Seife in Steinau is kept in place, but Wolf was no longer on the logo. Instead, the name of the washing powder produced by the firm, "Hexawa," was placed on the label on the "archive card," in spite of the fact that part of the old name Dreiturm had been retained. The Sidol Group was known to have worked on armaments production during the War. Many of Sidol's workers were forced laborers, especially Russian prisoners of war.
Partial envelope “D&E Dressel & Ephraim” stamped in red in top center next to round Berlin stamp dated “24-10-35.” [Related item: 2019.2.15]
Information Provided by Michael D. Bulmash: Dressel and Ephraim was a Jewish clothing and textile firm founded in 1919 and Aryanized in 1939.
Front: White card with brown printed text. Includes a reel of yarn on the left, and purple hand stamp with Swastika on either side at top. The stamp reads "Deutsche arische firma seit 1842," or an "Aryan German Company since 1842."Back: Writing in pencil.
Information Provided by Michael D. Bulmash: Business card of the Felix Hunger Company on Taborstrasse in Vienna, the second largest city in Greater Germany. The company sold yarn, rope, hard and soft fibers of all kinds, but the most interesting aspect of the card is the notation in between the Swastikas at the top which proudly announces "Deutsch arische firma seit 1842", or an "Aryan German firm since 1842" .
Partial envelope “D&E Dressel & Ephraim” stamped in red in top center next to round Berlin stamp dated “8-1-37.” [Related item: 2019.2.2.16]
Information Provided by Michael D. Bulmash: Dressel and Ephraim was a Jewish clothing and textile firm founded in 1919 and Aryanized in 1939.
Front: Tan card with printed black writing. Top includes several handstamps, which are a circular orange Regensburg stamp, a Kalkwerk D. Funk handstamp, and a Detusche Reichspost stamp with an eagle and 45. Beneath is printed black information with filled in black ink handwriting. There are several pasted stamps: leftmost, a dark tan stamp with orange text, then a light tan stamp with the Kalkwerk D. Funk logo, and on the bottom a Steine und Erden stamp.
Information Provided by Michael D. Bulmash: Established in 1937 under Hermann Goring's oversight, the Reichwerke Hermann Goering was a massive holding company utilized primarily for mobilizing economic resources for the war effort. Started as a means by which to exploit Germany's domestic iron ores, the Reichwerke Hermann Goering soon producing other industrial assets through absorbing industries in occupied countries. The Reichwerke grew into a massive organization with numerous locations and departments involving the exploitation of forced laborers, prisoners of war, deportees and concentration camp prisoners. The D. Funk company was founded and owned by Jews. In an effort to supply the ironworks companies in Linz, Austria, Goring was interested in Funk's limewstone quarries. As part of the Aryanization process, the Funk company was forced to sell the plant for well beneath its market value. The agreed upon purchase price was in fact never paid to the heirs of the company. This "transaction" is displayed in the December 1938 "Klichee" referring to the Hermann Goring Kalkwerk Regensburg. In 1944, the name was changed to Steine and Erden, GmbH, still part of Goring's Reichwerke.
Typewritten letter on tan paper. Addressed to Joseph Bürckel and signed by Franz Hirsch.
Information Provided by Michael D. Bulmash: One of two letters regarding a Jew's tailor shop (2012.1.369, 2012.1.370). This letter was a T.L.S. sent by one Franz Hirsch to future gauleiter of Vienna Joseph Burckel, then Reichskommissar for the union of Austria with the German Reich. Hirsch notes: "... Because I plan to open a tailors supply store and to break the monopoly of the Jews in this type of business, I would like to ask you to support me in this venture... In my district, I am viewed as an illegal National Socialist but despite all my efforts I was not able to find a suitable location based on my national views... I was in the military from 1913 to 1919... One year as a P.O.W. in Italy... Since 1921 I have been a master tailor and have had only one room which I must also use as an apartment..." On April 19, 1938 Austria had officially become part of the German Reich: Presumably Mr. Hirsch got his store.
Letter on Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei (National-socialist German Workers' Party letterhead. Includes typewritten message regarding Franz Hirsch.
Information Provided by Michael D. Bulmash: One of two letters regarding a Jew's tailor shop (2012.1.369, 2012.1.370). This letter is a T.L.S. by a district leader of Vienna on NSDAP district group letterhead, June 28, 1938, sent to Joseph Burckel (and initaled by him in pencil at the bottom). It advises: "... Franz Hirsch... Was informed to look for a suitable Jew's store and that we will support him in transfer and the Aryanization of the business..." On April 19, 1938 Austria had officially become part of the German Reich: Presumably Mr. Hirsch got his store.
Front: Greenish envelope with window for address in the middle. Red pasted stamp in right corner of a man in profile facing left with a faded hand stamp over it.
Information Provided by Michael D. Bulmash: The Hohenlohe Works had been owned by the Petshcek brothers who were Jewish and the company was thus Aryanized. All of the assets of this Jewish-owned company were "sequestered" or, in other words, confiscated, in June, 1939, which explains the over-stamp stating that the acting administrator of the ore mining and ironworks is the Hermann Goering Works.
Front: White envelope with return address printed in black on upper lefthand corner with a purple DEUTSCHE BANK hand stamp on it. Typewritten address. Middle right side has a red stamp of a man in profile facing left, with a black circular hand stamp over it. Back: Five blue and white Deutsche Bank stickers with white eagle inside.
Information Provided by Michael D. Bulmash: German Agricultural and Industrial Bank envelope to a bank in Prague showing Deutsche bank overmark and labels on back cover. 1940. The Agricultural and Industrial Bank, East Sudeten, was considered a Jewish bank and hence had been "Aryanized" and absorbed by Deutsche Bank.
Front: HERMANN GORING text printed at lower left, 3 hole punches along left edge; Back: 'Betr.: Leergut-Rucksendung' typewritten and underlined at top left.
Information Provided by Michael D. Bulmash: Letter card with "Goering Reichswerke" cachet and his emblem sent from the "Phoenix" coal mine which, prior to its confiscation and "Aryanization" by the Nazis, was owned by the Jewish industrialist Ignaz Petscheck. As part of the Hermann Goering Reichswerke, thousands of slave workers and inmates from concentration camp Buchenwald were forced to work at this mine. The text of the card reads:To the German Aseol company in Zeitz; Matter: return of empties; WE have sent to your delivery address to the Rehmsdorf station, 2 iron barrels under the code G.PH 8237 and 7385, Heil Hitler.
Commemorative Treuhander Cover from German Invasion of Oberschlesien, Again in Polish Hands, with Provisional Liberation Cancel
Envelope marked “HEFTENFABRIK RENOMA Treuhander” in black print in top left corner, red postage stamp in upper right corner, “Nürnberg” underlined in black print in bottom right corner.
Information Provided by Michael D. Bulmash: “RENOMA” manufactured notebooks (heftenfabrik). Johann Wisniewski is the trustee of the company at this time. Letter is addressed to A.W. Faber writing instruments manufacturer in Nuremberg. Faber continues to this day as Faber-Castell, owned by the same family.
After the invasion of a Poland in 1939, treuhander, or trustees, were appointed to take over the management of formerly Jewish-owned firms which were confiscated by the German. Bendzin was a textile center in Upper Silesia, and Jews constituted 80 percent of the population of the town. This “Aryanization” of formerly Jewish-owned businesses- consistent with the German Nuremberg laws- did not preclude Jews continuing to work in these fomis for the time being, as their expert advice was necessary for these firms to function properly. Since treuhander usually handles larger concerns, and Poles took over management of smaller ones, it is assumed that this company was a sizable factory.
Front: Tan card with printed black lines and information blanks with information written in with black ink. Top section and lower section have a series of pasted and hand stamps. Includes information on the history of a machine manufactured by Gleiser, with dates, name and address of purchaser, along with maintenance information. Gleiser was a formerly Jewish, then Aryanized company. Back: Information filled in with black ink. Stamps at top and bottom right.
Information Provided by Michael D. Bulmash: A card containing history of technical information on a machine manufactured by Gleiser, with dates, name and address of purchaser, along with maintenance information. The machine was constructed in 1929. Gleiser was a Jewish company-Albert Gleiser Mobelfabrik-AG- liquidated between 1936-1938. The card does not yield information as to the specific German company or individual that took over after Gleiser was Aryanized.