Willy Angerthal

Bismarckstr. 17
Stone was laid
12 June 2021
18 February 1882 in Kasekow (Pommern)
on 28 May 1942 to Sachsenhausen
28 May 1942 in Sachsenhausen
  • Stolperstein Willy Angerthal (c/o Projekt-Stolpersteine)
    Stolperstein Willy Angerthal (c/o Projekt-Stolpersteine)

    Stolperstein Willy Angerthal (c/o Projekt-Stolpersteine)

Willy Angerthal was born on 10 February 1882 in Casekow in the then Randow district in the Prussian province of Pomerania.

His parents, the merchant Max Angerthal and his wife Henriette née Unger, had a total of four children, three sons, besides Willy also Siegfried (born 1878) and Gustav (born 1888), and the daughter Elise (born 1883). We know nothing about Willy's childhood and youth, but he seems to have left Casekow for Berlin at an early age.

In 1910 he appears in the Berlin address book with the address Greifswalderstr. 197. He is listed there as a merchant of the company 'Nord-Ost' Bekleidungsindustrie für Herren- und Knaben-Garderobe. In 1920 he is listed as the owner of the company Bruno Winkel & Co. Knabenkonfektion at Fruchtstraße 51 in Berlin-Mitte, and 5 years later as the owner of the 'Fabrik von Knaben- und Burschenkonfektion' at Roßstraße 19/20, which he ran until the end of his professional life.
In 1938 a new owner is noted in the address book.

Willy Angerthal was married to Helene Rosenthal in his first marriage. It is not known when they married, but their son Kurt was born on 8 July 1918 in Berlin. After many years of living in Greifswalderstrasse in Prenzlauer Berg, the family moved to Kirchstrasse 20 in Moabit in 1923, and in 1932 they moved to a prestigious villa at Bismarckstrasse 17/19 on Wannsee.

The change in living situation clearly shows that the family had corresponding wealth and income at that time. Helene Angerthal was registered as the owner, possibly she had brought corresponding assets into the marriage. A commercial property at Rosenheimerstrasse 18 in Schöneberg also belonged to the Angerthals.

Helene Angerthal died on 5 January 1936. In the following years, the discrimination and persecution of Jews in the German Reich intensified more and more. Presumably father and son Angerthal tried to organise their emigration. As early as October 1936, Willy Angerthal sold the property in Schöneberg for 84,500 RM, and in March 1939 he also sold the house he had inherited from his wife, Bismarckstraße 17/19, where he still lived with their son Kurt, to a couple from Vienna for 43,000 RM. At that time, this house had already been mortgaged for 20,900 RM as security for a possible Reich flight tax. In addition, Willy Angerthal paid RM 3,500 in Jewish property tax.

Father and son did not succeed in emigrating. In 1942, Willy Angerthal married a second time, to Margarethe Orbach, born on 2 September 1893 in Kreuzburg. For her, too, it was the second marriage. After her divorce from Karl Zander, with whom she had two children living in Krefeld, she came to Berlin. Soon after the marriage, on 27 May 1942, Willy Angerthal, who now lived on Engeldamm in Berlin-Kreuzberg, was arrested in a revenge action along with another 153 Jewish men. They were taken to the Sachsenhausen concentration camp and shot there the next day. On 29 May, a further 96 Jewish men were selected from those already imprisoned in the camp and also murdered. The revenge action had been set in motion by Goebbels and Himmler after the attack by the so-called Baum group in the Lustgarten on 18 May 1942.
The son and his second wife also did not survive the Holocaust. Margarethe Angerthal was deported from Berlin to Theresienstadt on the 8th old-age transport on 19 June 1942, only three weeks after her husband's murder. After surviving for more than two years in the terrible conditions of the ghetto, she was taken from Theresienstadt to Auschwitz on transport Ep No. 190 on 9 October 1944 and murdered there.

There is no trace of the fate of Kurt Angerthal.
The takeover of the Angerthal family's assets by the National Socialist state after murder and deportation can no longer be reconstructed, as the corresponding files of the tax administration have been destroyed or lost. However, a communication from the Commerzbank in 1966 to the Restitution Office at the Berlin Regional Court shows that securities from Willy Angerthal's 'estate deposit' were transferred to the Reichsbank as late as 2 March 1945. In 1955, the last remaining securities in the bank deposit went to the JRSO (Jewish Restitution Successor Organisation).
After the war, there were various restitution proceedings in connection with Willy Angerthal's two properties at Rosenheimerstrasse 38 in Schöneberg and Bismarckstrasse 17/18 in Wannsee. These proceedings were not brought by heirs, but by the JRSO. This Jewish institution was the representative of interests and trustee for Jewish assets in the US sector legitimised by the American occupying power. In 1959, applications for restitution were filed again, this time by Elsa Zollmann née Orbach, resident in Los Angeles, and Alfred Orbach, resident in Israel, siblings of Margarete Angerthal. The case concerns compensation for the household effects, the forcibly delivered gold and silverware and jewellery as well as the entire household effects. The value to be compensated, calculated by expert opinion, was around DM 15,000 and makes it clear that the Angerthals had lived in good middle-class circumstances. In 1963 Elsa Paulick née Orbach, a relative of Margarethe Angerthal, came forward and applied for compensation as heiress. There is no result on this.