Update München Displaced // Hebrew Gymnasium

During her time in Neu-Freimann Displaced Person’s (DP’s) camp, Danuta Mandel attended the Hebrew grammar school in Möhlstrasse. A recollection.
Danuta Mandel (front left) with fellow pupils outside the Hebrew Gymnasium in Möhlstrasse, 1948 © USHMM

During her visit, Dina Schweizer showed us this photo from the United States Holocaust Museum which is also in her possession. The girls were photographed in 1948 in the garden of the Hebrew Gymnasium, with Dina Schweizer, then still Danuta Mandel, in the front on the left.

As the only survivor in her family, she lived with her uncle, aunt, and two cousins in Neu-Freimann DP camp in Munich. (Danuta’s story can be read here.) She took the bus and then the tram to Möhlstrasse in the Bogenhausen neighborhood every day. She remembers calling the tram line the “Palestine Express” as it led to the district where there were many Jewish aid organizations, kosher restaurants, and small stores. “There were always lots of people on the street here.” Unlike many other children at the Jewish school, she already spoke Hebrew well, as she had learned the new language in a DP orphanage and at the school in Neu-Freimann during her long odyssey. After the founding of the State of Israel in 1948, the “interim period” she had spent in Munich was over. She emigrated to Israel with her relatives in 1949 and moved to Luxembourg in 1974 where she has lived ever since.

With thanks to Dina Schweizer for her recollections.

The exhibition “Munich Displaced. The Surviving Remnant” is a stocktaking on Munich’s post-war history. Much detailed information as well as photos and memorabilia are still missing. In the meantime, visitors, descendants of Displaced Persons from Munich and other interested parties have shared their memories with us.