The Aufrichtig Family

Stones of Remembrance

 

 

 

Family member Walter Aufrichtig and his wife Erna Hindler were both murdered at Chelmno on 9 September 1942. In 2002, Walter's name was among those  inscribed on a memorial established in Traunkirchen, in honour of the 476 Viennese Jews taken to a forced labour camp in the vicinity, and then subsequently sent to extermination camps.

 

Dr. Elisabeth Ben David-Hindler, daughter of Hans Hindler, a cousin of Erna Hinder's father, Salomon Hindler, initiated a project for the remembrance of the Viennese Jewish population in a quarter of the Second district, the "Street of Remembrance". In 2006 she and members of her Association "Stones of Remembrance", have been working on a new project, the "Path of Remembrance" through the Second district. Within this project there is the possibility of setting "Stones of Remembrance " for Holocaust victims. Full details of the projects are set out on her website at www.steinedererinnerung.net.

 

www.aufrichtigs.com is pleased to highlight this worthy endeavour and reproduces Dr Elisabeth's descriptions of the projects and the memorial to family member Erna Hinder.

 

 

 

"Street of Remembrance"

dedicated to the Jewish residents of the “Volkertviertel”

 

Before World War II more than 5000 Jewish Viennese lived in the “Volkertviertel” (Volkert- Quarter). With the invasion of the Nazis, the Jewish population became at once deprived of all their rights, their jobs, their belongings and their human dignity. Those who were refused flight were deported and murdered.

With the "Street of Remembrance”, we want to give back to the people, who were rooted here, a place belonging to their former home town, at the very spot where they had lived with their families. In choosing the commemorative stones we kept in mind people of different age groups. Many commemorative stones were placed for children. We also took into account the different places of deportation, many of which were in hastily established ghettos in small Polish towns, from where  the deportees were sent to the extermination camps. Most of the commemorative stones are dedicated to people whose complete families were eradicated. 18 stones were set at explicit request of former Jewish residents’ relatives.

Our greatest desire is that this place of commemoration contributes to the healing of the deep wounds that have been inflicted on the Jewish population by the Nazis, by their followers and by those people who simply looked away.

"Truly dead are only those whom no one remembers”

 

Elisabeth Ben David-Hindler

Chairwoman of the association "Stones of Remembrance“

Email: steinedererinnerung@gmx.at

 

 Memorial to members of the Hindler Family. Picture courtesy of Dr Elisabeth Ben David-Hindler.

 

 

 

The Path of Remembrance

 

The "Street of Remembrance" in the "Volkertviertel," our first project, has stirred many people.  A special feature on this street are the stones set in the ground, reflecting the idea of "stumbling blocks" (Stolpersteine) which originated in Germany , in memory of individual inhabitants of the Volkertviertel.  The project met with great acceptance by the population, and was regarded as a gift on the part of many Jewish people.

 

Our new, more extensive project "The Path of Remembrance," will - on the one hand - take you back to the many significant points of the former Jewish life in the Leopoldstadt, and - on the other hand - bring to light the history of the expulsion and murder of the Jewish population.

 

It will touch on the everyday Jewish life, and it will - in an exemplary manner - memorialize the people who erstwhile lived here.  In this manner, we aim to give - symbolically - and stone by stone - a little place again in their home district, to the expelled and murdered former inhabitants; and to give the family members a chance - and the solace to perpetuate the memory of their parents, grandparents, and siblings.

 

With these examples, we wish to keep awake the memory of Jewish life and culture in the Leopoldstadt, destroyed by the Nazis.  Each of the 30 stations will include the following:

    

a) Explanation plaques: (7 3/4 by 7 3/4 inches) Example of inscription: In front of the house Schmelzgasse 9 there are already 5   stones in place.  Next to them a plaque will be installed with the eventual text:

"In this house there were collective apartments where 143 people were being crammed in. Only 11 of them survived”

 

b) Stones of remembrance for murdered Jewish inhabitants.  Each stone is 3 3/4 by

3 3/4 inches.  There are always blocks of 4 stones in place.  The amount of blocks will be adapted according to the space of the station.  A comprehensive search around the world will offer relatives of the murdered family members, who lived in the Leopoldstadt, the opportunity to place "Stones of Remembrance."  A similarly large number of stones will be set for people without surviving relatives.

 

c) Path Markings:  As an identification sign.

  

The "Path of Remembrance" will be created in 3 stages within a period of 2 years.

The inauguration of the first half will take place in November 2006.

The head of the district, Mr. Gerhard Kubik, as well as the city's culture councilor, Mailath Pokorny, are supportive of our project.  At the planning and realization of this project, we enjoy the support of the District of Leopoldstadt.

We expect the cost to be borne partially by the "Nationalfonds."  For the most part, we would like through sponsorship, building-stones, and contributions.  Sponsorship can be assumed for the placing of personal stones.

The explanation plaques and path-markings are covering the cost of the building stones.

Sponsorship for the Stones of Remembrance is € 120.-

Building-Stones for the Explanation Plaques and Path Markings are € 18.-, € 36.- or €72.-

If you are interested to be a sponsor, in a building-stone, or have questions about the project, please contact our homepage: www.steinedererinnerung.net

 

Dr. Elisabeth Ben David-Hindler, Chairwoman of the Association, Stones of Remembrance  

 

The Karl Renner Prize

 Pictured above are Elisabeth Ben David-Hindler (second from left, and Andreas Mailath-Pokorny

 (extreme right).

 

Ephraim Levanon

 

On September 20 2010 the association ‘Stones of Remembrance’ was one of three that were awarded the Karl Renner Prize in the Town Hall in Vienna. The other awardees were the association ‘Hemayat’ for support of traumatised refugees, and the ‘Theodor Kramer Organisation’ for exile literature.

 

The Viennese Culture Councillor Andreas Mailath-Pokorny gave an introduction, in which he pointed out the important work of all three initiatives and also their similar fields of activity: ‘All three awardees are linked by their commitment for people that were displaced and their fight against forgetting these people. Getting torn out of the familiar environment is one of the most terrible experiences that can be made. For this reason the work that these three organisations accomplish is very important.’

 

The renowned author Doron Rabinovici spoke in praise of Hemayat, whose work provides care for torture- and war-survivors.

 

Speaking on behalf of Stones of Remembrance was Ephraim Levanon, uncle of  the association's Secretary General Elisabeth Ben David-Hindler.

 

In 2005 the first stone had been set for his parents. He built a bridge to his own past, when he had to leave Austria at the age of 15. At that time he could never have imagined that one day he would give a speech in the town hall. He described the association’s work, saying: "The association sowed an idea like a seed in encrusted ground, and prepared it with a lot of work to let this idea grow and prosper."


Clemens Jabloner, President of the Court of Constitution spoke for the Theodor Kramer Organisation, which propagates and preserves Austrian literature from the land of exile. Following the speeches the prizes were awarded. The Karl Renner Prize is endowed with 45,000 euros.


Reproduced with thanks from the Steine der Erinnerungen site.

 

 

Walter Aufrichtig - Traunkirchen Intro & Memorial Ceremony

Walter Aufrichtig - Trauinkirchen-2 List of Names

Walter Aufrichtig - Traunkirchen-3 Denmalenthullung

Walter Aufrichtig - Traunkirchen-4 George E Wozasek

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