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Manfred H. Hecht Family Collection

Identifier: AR 25111

Scope and Content Note

This collection contains correspondence between Manfred Hecht in New York and his parents in Vienna. There is also correspondence with the American Consulate and overseas transportation companies relating to Hecht's attempts to arrange for his parents to emigrate. Manfred and his parents primarily discuss family news, the deprivations of life in Vienna, and the adjustment to living and working in New York City. In addition, Folder 1 contains a letter from Terezin in 1945 confirming the death of Maximilian and Ada Hecht, as well as a 2002 email from a researcher also confirming the date of their deaths. Folder 2 includes a letter from Manfred's parents that relates in some detail the restrictions imposed on them by the Nazis, such as having been forced to live in one room in their own house. Folder 3 includes correspondence between Manfred and his mother about suitable operatic pieces for him to perform and her joy at his marriage and a new daughter-in-law. Most of the correspondence in Folder 1 is typewritten in English, while almost all of the correspondence in Folders 2, 3, 4, and 5 is handwritten in German. Folders 4 and 5 each contain a few dozen detailed postcards. Among the papers of Folder 6 are a handwritten letter to Manfred from his wife, Marie, photocopies of a section of his memoir, and a copy of the first page of Manfred's Austrian Heritage Collection questionnaire, each of which is in English.


  • 1940-2002
  • Majority of material found within 1940-1941


Language of Materials

The collection is in German and English.

Access Restrictions

Open to researchers.

Access Information

Readers may access the collection by visiting the Lillian Goldman Reading Room at the Center for Jewish History. We recommend reserving the collection in advance; please visit the LBI Online Catalog and click on the "Reserve" button.

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

Manfred Hugo Hecht was born in 1918 in Vienna, Austria and raised there. His parents, Maximilian and Ada Hecht, were born in Poland. Maximilian was a banker, and Ada an opera singer. After the Anschluss in 1938, they tried to immigrate to America, but the visa quotas for Poland were already filled. Maximilian and Ada decided to send their son to America without them. From America, Manfred tried to get his parents out of Vienna, but was ultimately unsuccessful. They were deported to Theresienstadt on September 11, 1942 and then sent to Auschwitz with the last transport on October 28, 1944.

Manfred Hecht married Marie Louise in 1941, earned a PhD in clinical psychology at Columbia University in 1962, and served for a time as Cantor of the largest Reform congregation in New Jersey, while living in New York.


0.25 Linear Feet


Correspondence from Manfred H. Hecht's parents to him in New York; correspondence and documents concerning their emigration attempts.


The collection is arranged in one series.

Digitization Note

The collection was digitized and made accessible in its entirety.

Related Material

See also Manfred H. Hecht's memoir "My four lives: Memoirs of a singing psychoanalyst", located in the LBI Library - st 1655 .

See also the Austrian Heritage Collection questionnaire “Hecht, Manfred H, 1918” in the LBI Archives AR 10378, Box 17.

Guide to the Manfred H. Hecht Family Collection 1940-2002 AR 25111
Processed by Michael Himmel
© 2013
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Description is in English.
Digitization made possible by the Conference on Jewish Material Claims against Germany.
Edition statement
This version was derived from Manfred_Hecht_Family.xml

Revision Statements

  • June 2015: dao links and digitization information added by Leanora Lange.

Repository Details

Part of the Leo Baeck Institute Repository

15 West 16th Street
New York NY 10011 United States