upheimand its Annihilation
Book Pages 168 - 172
Translated by: Markus Ganser
Ludwig Einstein, born October 14th, 1881 in Laupheim, died August 1945 in Jamaica, New York, USA, OO Sofie Einstein née Erlebacher, born October 22nd, 1894 in Laupheim, died in 1974 in New York.
– Nannette Hadley (Nanny Einstein), born June 16th, 1921 in Laupheim, lives in Johnsonville NY/USA,
– Paul D. Eland (Paul Einstein), born September 12th, 1925 in Ulm, lives near Princeton NJ/USA.
Ludwig and Sofie Einstein with their children Paul and Nanny, approx. in 1935.
Nanny Einstein, now Nannette Hadley, spent her childhood in Laupheim. She went to the Jewish elementary school and subsequently to the Latin and Junior High School until 1934. Her class mates characterized her as being a very talented and gifted student.
„My family and I were members of the Jewish community. On Saturday afternoon, we kids used to have a social gathering in the “Ochsen” restaurant. And I always liked to go for a walk near the fields surrounding the town. “
„I was also tasked with bringing my parents coffee to the D.M. Einstein department store every afternoon. I really liked visiting the store. It was also my daily job to bring the milk from the dairy of the castle estate. “
„From 1934 to 1936 I attended school in St. Gallen, Switzerland. I no longer wanted to go to a German school under the Nazi regime. So I lived with a Swiss family and attended the local school.
In September 1936 the whole family (Ludwig, Sofie, Nanny, and Paul) emigrated to the United States. At late as August 1928 Ludwig Einstein had been elected to replace one of the elders of the Jewish community of Laupheim, but now the family was compelled to emigrate. Nannette Hadley described this situation as followns:
„Furniture and household items were loaded into lift vans. For me, it was like an adventure to travel via Bremen to New York. The vessel was packed with Americans returning from the Olympics 1936 in Berlin. I’ll never forget these Olympic Games, because Gretel Bergmann, my friend, had been excluded from the German team of high jumpers.
Nanny and Paul Einstein, approx. in 1932.
Nanny Einstein with her parents, approx. in 1935.
Nannette Hadley about her family’s life and their difficulties in the United States:
„Slowly but surely we all got used to living in New York City, especially after we felt at home with the English language. To be free from persecution made the difference. In the city, we met lots of other emigrants who shared our fate. All descendants from Laupheim came together once a month to have a cozy afternoon. “
“My father had to face substantial financial losses due to the emigration. Relatives from the United States helped him in starting a little store, which didn’t prove to be very successful because of the Great Depression. So my mother also had a small job to support the family. My father passed away the day the Second World War came to an end.”
„I had good school education free of charge including secondary school and evening college. During the day I worked as a secretary. During the Second World War I was a secretary in Washington DC. After our marriage we purchased a dairy farm, and I learned to milk cows! I also had a voluntary job at the local school library. “
Nannette Hadley on August 17th, 2002 in the Laupheim museum with her sons Evan and Julian,
Dr. A. R. Löwenbrück, daughter-in-law Margret, granddaughter Eve Hadley and Rolf Emmerich (from left).
„My two sons are successful in their professional careers. Evan is in medical research and Julian is doing ecological studies focusing on global warming and dendrology. In summer 2002 my two sons, my daughter-in-law, my granddaughter and I visited Laupheim. It was my first visit since 1936. We received a warm welcome, and visiting the Jewish cemetery was particularly interesting for me, as I had often been there as a child, even more so after the death of my cousin Clärle Einstein”
She had a fond memory of the castle park with its fish. And when she and her relatives visited the Museum of the History of Christians and Jews at Grosslaupheim Castle they showed great interest.
Paul Einstein, since 1947 Paul Eland, is a retired electrical engineer and lives in New Jersey. In 2011, we received the following note from him:
As is stated in the “Book”, we left Germany in September 1936 as a family. Ijust turned 11 years old. We
lived in Brooklyn, NY and I was sent to Public School 3 days after we arrived. I spoke almost no English
and was the only foreign child in the class. Considered a novelty at that time. My teachers and
classmates were very tolerant, considerate and helpful that I was able to catch up and be among my
peers in no time. They even helped me get rid of my German accent. I was becoming an American very
rapidly. We moved to Queens, NY where my father operated a haberdashery store with a partner from
Germany. I helped run errands and did other chores for them while going to local schools.
My next big step was getting accepted to go to Stuyvesant High School in New York City. This was at the
recommendation and urging of my Jr. High School teacher, Mrs. Sergeant. I got a wonderful technical and
science education there and made many friends. Looking back, this was the most rewarding and
memorable time of my entire education. I still belong to the Alumni Association there and attend events
periodically. The high school is now only a few blocks from the World Trade Center and was in the path
of the 9/11 disaster. It survived, thank God.
After high school graduation, I attended City College of New York and studied electrical engineering. My
studies were interrupted in 1945, when I was drafted to join the US Army. I served in Bavaria, Germany
for the US Signal Corps. I was unable to visit Laupheim at that time because it was in the French
occupation zone. Returning from the army, I completed my studies for electrical engineering degrees
BSEE and MSEE at City College of New York
Since 1949, my career as an engineer was extremely rewarding, challenging and interesting. I really
enjoyed my work. It was in the forefront of science at that time, like going to the moon.
In 1954 I married Lillian, my wife for 53 years. I miss her dearly. Our son Richard is standing by me at this
time. He is an attorney, working in Real Estate Title Insurance. He is married to a wonderful wife Holly
and has two children, Ariel and Jeremy. They are my pride and joy. Ariel is a freshman in college at
Franklin and Marshall College in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.
In 1992 I retired from my successful career as electrical engineer. I worked for the same company for 36
years. We lived in Dumont, NJ roughly over that same period of time. Wanting to be closer to my
grandchildren and watch them grow up, we moved to Princeton Junction, NJ.
I took my family, Lillian and Richard in 1972, on a "ROOTS" trip to visit Laupheim. The Jewish Cemetery
was the goal to pay our respect to all the family graves of the Einstein's, Erlebacher’s, Heilbronner’s,
Steiner’s, etc. All was in perfect order. I could not believe it. We had lunch at the Wyse and enjoyed the
beer and wurst. Visited Mrs. Halder the bakery lady on Kapellenstrasse. who used to bake the berches
for us. She treated us to ice cream. The "Kaufhaus DM EINSTEN” and Kapellenstrasse 50 was also a
landmark I showed my family. We also visited Ulm, my birthplace. Richard and I climbed the Ulmer
Muenster to the very top, something I was not allowed to do when I lived in Germany. On the way to
Munich we also had the opportunity to visit Dachau.
Kapellen Street: Einstein houses side by side! The house in the
foreground, number 48, belonged to „Minnele“ Einstein, the
next house, number 50, was the home of the
Ludwig Einstein family. (Photo: Karl Neidlinger)