Hans Waldbaum was born on 19 December 1892, the second of three brothers, in Neumünster, Schleswig-Holstein. His elder brother Kurt was born in 1891 and his younger brother Erich was born in 1899. Around the turn of the century the family moved to Berlin, where a daughter, Charlotte, was born in 1905. Erich Waldbaum became a businessman. At an unknown point in his life, probably around 1940-1, he moved in with his brothers Kurt and Erich to an apartment at Akazienstraße 3. All three brothers were unmarried.
Hans and his brother Kurt Waldbaum were among the 537 Jewish forced labourers listed by name who started working for Ehrich & Graetz AG, at Elsenstraße 87-96 in Treptow, Berlin, in September 1940. They worked on the production line manufacturing gas lamps and electrical appliances.
During the wave of arrests known as the “factory campaign”, targeting Jewish forced labourers in Berlin, the brothers Hans and Kurt Waldbaum were sent to Auschwitz with 1128 other men, women, and children on 4 March 1943. On 6 March, 96 women and 389 men were “selected” for work and 643 people murdered in the gas chambers. Hans Waldbaum did not survive. His brothers also died in Auschwitz. Their mother Meta, née Behrendt, survived Theresienstadt, and their sister survived 15 months in hiding and later internment in Ravensbrück concentration camp.
After the death of her mother in 1952, as sole heir, Charlotte Hoffmann successfully applied for compensation for the loss of her brothers’ assets. In 1965 and 1966 she gave evidence against Otto Bovensiepen, the head of the Berlin Gestapo in 1941-2, relating to the transports of Jews and assembly camps for Jews in Berlin.
The stumbling stone was sponsored by house residents and laid on 29 October 2010.