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Neumann and Jacks Family Collection

Identifier: AR 25580

Scope and Content Note

The Neumann and Jacks Family Collection focuses on the emigration from Germany to the United States of several members of these related families as well as of their lives in Germany. In addition, some information on members of the Siegfried Berger (previously Hirschfeld) Family is also present. The collection includes a number of official documents and certificates, family photographs, poems, copies of newspaper clippings and official correspondence.

Series I contains documentation of the Neumann and Jacks family members. In addition to official documents for several family members, the papers provide evidence of Max Neumann's early professional life in Germany, the family's last years in Germany and their immigration experiences, and the deaths of Jacob and Hedwig Jacks, along with papers relating to family celebrations.

The second series holds some official documents of the unrelated family of Siegfried and Ruth Berger who – like the Neumanns – originated from Stolp and later lived in New York City.


  • Creation: 1843-2000
  • Creation: Majority of material found within 1937-1949

Language of Materials

The collection is in German, English, and Hebrew.

Access Restrictions

Open to researchers.

Access Information

Collection is digitized. Follow the links in the Container List to access the digitized materials.

Use Restrictions

There may be some restrictions on the use of the collection. For more information, contact:

Leo Baeck Institute, Center for Jewish History, 15 West 16th Street, New York, NY 10011


Biographical Note

Max Neumann was born on March 28, 1890 in Stolp, Pommerania (today Sŀupsk, Poland), the son of David and Taubine Neumann. In 1906 he graduated from Oberrealschule and in July of that year began his apprenticeship at the firm Walter und Fleck in Danzig (today Gdánsk, Poland). After two years of learning he was kept as a salesman until December 23, 1908. He then worked from the beginning of 1909 until the end of August 1909 as a salesman at the firm Gerson und Co. in Hamburg. This was followed by consecutive positions as a salesman at Hirsch und Co. in Hamburg (September 1909-September 1911) and Seidenhaus Goldstein in Königsberg (today Kaliningrad, Russia) from October 1911 until December 1912, and as a salesman and representive at Gebrueder Hochland in Königsberg (December 1912-July 1913). He then returned to Seidenhaus Goldstein until he was called to military service in August 1914, where he served as part of the Grenadier "Kronprinz" Regiment of Königsberg.

In January 1919 Max returned to Stolp from the war and entered his father's textile business. After two years he become co-partner of the business. The business sold, among others, a large selection of fabric for clothes and suits, linen and cotton products, undergarments and stockings, notions, knitwear, curtains, rugs and workers' clothing.

In the early 1920s Max Neumann met Henni Jacks of Aschersleben at a dinner party in Berlin. Henni was the daughter of Jacob and Hedwig Jacks and had a talent for music. She had studied voice in Hamburg, but a severe case of laryngitis had put an end to her dream of a singing career. On April 6, 1924 she and Max Neumann married in Aschersleben.

The following April their son Heinz was born in Stolp. For the next ten years the Neumanns remained in Stolp, with Henni Jacks assisting in the family business as well as working with various Jewish organizations. By 1934 the Nazis were boycotting Jewish businesses and Henni insisted the family leave. In 1935 the Neumanns moved to Berlin. From November 11 until December 1, 1938 Max Neumann was interned in the Sachsenhausen concentration camp.

On February 27, 1939 he left Berlin with Henni and their son Heinz and traveled via Paris and Cannes to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. At this time men with tourist visas were not allowed to work in Brazil so Henni supported the family by baking cakes and French pastries which they sold to restaurants, cafes, and private parties. The Neumanns lived in Brazil for one year and nine months until they were allowed to immigrate to the United States. In October 1940 they came to Peoria, Illinois, where they founded a manufacturing business for clothes. The family later moved to New York.


0.25 Linear Feet


The Neumann and Jacks Family Collection contains papers of members of these families, with documentation of their lives in Germany and their immigration to the United States. Official documents of members of the Berger (Hirschfeld) and Oschinsky families are also present. The collection largely consists of official documents or certificates but also holds celebratory memorabilia, photographs, poems, copies of newspaper clippings and official correspondence.

Related Material

The LBI Archives also includes the related collection: PRI – WA – KI reunion : 60th anniversary of the founding of the private juedische Waldschule Kaliski 1932-1992 1992-1993 (AR 11920). Heinz Neumann attended this school.

Processing Information

The collection had no indication of original order and was therefore divided during processing of the archival collection into two series. The initial arrangement and biographical notes were made by Lotte Baatz; Dianne Ritchey created the second series and final arrangement of the collection and wrote the collection's description.

Guide to the Papers of the Neumann and Jacks Family 1843-2000 AR 25580
Processed by Lotte Baatz and Dianne Ritchey
© 2015
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Description is in English.
Edition statement
This version was derived from Neumann_and_Jacks_FamilyCollection.xml

Revision Statements

  • February 2016:: dao links added by Emily Andresini.

Repository Details

Part of the Leo Baeck Institute Repository

15 West 16th Street
New York NY 10011 United States