Willy Adler papers
The collection consists of correspondence, certificates, and other papers of Willy Adler, who was born in 1920 in Hamburg, Germany. Pre-war material includes documents related to Adler's father's egg business, certificates from Adler's bar mitzvah and his parents' marriage, and receipts for taxes and other payments the Adlers made to the Nazi government. Pre-war photographs show Adler and his parents in Hamburg in the 1920s and 1930s. Post-war material includes correspondence relating to Adler's German pension payments and three newsletters from Jewish organizations in Hamburg.
- 1913-1938, 1982-2010
- Adler, Willy Moritz, 1920- (Person)
Language of Material
Materials in English, German, and Hebrew
This collection is open for research.
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Willy Adler was born in 1920 in Hamburg, Germany, to Mordko "Max" Adler and Beila Teller Adler, both German immigrants. Max Adler had been born in Poland, Beila Teller in Romania. Willy Adler attended a Jewish school until 1936, when, as a consequence of the Nuremburg Laws, Jews were prevented from using public transportation. In 1937, after hearing that a Gestapo raid was coming, the Adlers went into hiding with a Christian family. One of Adler's two brothers went back home to retrieve something he had forgotten and never returned.
After arguing with someone who had called him a Jew in the market, Willy Adler was arrested by the Gestapo and sent to a labor camp in Kofu, outside of Hamburg. He was released when he explained that his family was registered at the American Consulate. His cousins in the Bronx, New York, had sent papers to help get the family out of Germany. Adler was taken to Fuhlsbuttel and given a ticket for passage to the United States. His older brother, David, had already immigrated to the United States, and his parents were hidden by a Christian family in Hamburg before they also immigrated.
After arriving in New York in 1939, Adler worked with his brother David in a furniture store. Adler joined the U.S. Army and served as a German translator during World War II. At various times, he was stationed in Spartanburg and Charleston, South Carolina. In 1980, he and his wife, Irma, moved to Charleston.
0.1 linear feet (3 folders)
The collection consists of correspondence, certificates, and other papers of Willy Adler (1920-), a native of Hamburg, Germany, who immigrated to the United States in 1939. Materials document Nazi persecution of the Adler family.
Materials are described at the folder level.
Materials donated in 2000 and 2008 by Willy Adler.
Alternate Form of Materials
Digital reproductions of photographs available online in the Lowcountry Digital Library.
Processed by Rebecca McClure, November 2011.
- Inventory of the Willy Adler Papers, 1913-1938, 1982-2010
- Processed by: Rebecca McClure; machine-readable finding aid created by: Rebecca McClure
- Description rules
- Language of description
- Script of description
- Funding from the Council on Library and Information Resources supported the processing of this collection and encoding of the finding aid.