Hello as most you may or may not know this past April my family had a ceremony of sorts for my grandmother's cousin Bertram Polak where we laid a Stolperstein or Stumbling Stone in front of the house in Tilburg, Netherlands that he grew up in. The documentary could use some help with funding. If any of you are interested in this or know someone who could you please visit/forward the following link and help out. If any of you have any questions feel free to ask.
Steve - you might want to make that profile for Bertram Polak public if you want people to be bale to click on it and view it.
I follow your discission here and have read the information in the profile. I don't live as far away as you do as I live in Europe. But not in NL or in Poland.
But I wonder about the data here on Geni. It's said that Betram was murdered in Auswitch-Birkenau. I'm not sure if that will help to solve and clear out were he was murdered. As the nazis were extremally good at documenting everything they made, you migth find what transport he was sent with and why he was "delivered" to Birkenau instead of to work. And maybe that way find information about that specific day.
It migth be very hard to find people and witnesses for the actual capturing of Bertram, since the nazis emptied several blocks from all people so to keep secret with what they did. No journalists. No photographers. But some documention are still kept in the museums. And the archives is now opened to do searches.
I'm a bit confused that Bertram was killed as early as 1942. He was a young man and would have been of more use as a slaveworker than as dead. What made the nazis decied to murder him?
I'm born after WW II and from Sweden.
Of course I know Bertram was jewish. That's why they caugth him. And what I was thinking about is that the nazis in each country they "collected" jewish people they had to report to Berlin exactly how many and the names and ages of each and everone. At first how many there were in a specific town and then how many and who they caugth, who and how many they delivered for work or for extinsion to different camps.
When the prisoners arrived many were already dead during the suffering from the transportations. Count off! And then this old people and children directly to the gas chambers. Week or ill the same way. But Bertram was 22 year old and a young man.
The nazis must have rekognized him as a usefull worker. Every morning and evening the nazis were counting and wrote down deaths. They, the nazis were awfully good at making statistical reports.
They did destroy a lot of these reports in 1945 but be sure it was to many to destroy them all. I have seen Auswitch in Poland in 1973. I was young and refused to leave the bus. It was horrifying to only see the organized hell. In 2007 I was in Berlin and we then went one day to Sachsenhausen "Gedänkstedt". Most of the prisoners there had been documented from the arrival til death. There is a big library and archive. The nazis documented all details so to be able to construct the history of their Third reich. And they did not give up early enough to destroy all the proofs.
So if they caugth Bertram they must have known about his existance in NL 1941. His transport must be documented as his arrival. The nazis went to all census in all countries they occupied. They knew all existing jews by name and caugth them one by one in kind of a count down until they hade emptied a city or village. All the tatued numbers were registered connected to a person. If a member of a family slipped out of their net, they knew who was "missing" and they went on searching.
Of course many died from starvation and illnes too but one can be quite sure that this was noted as progress concerning the overall nazi goal to kill all jewish people in the world.
I do wish your film will reach many people in the world. It's important to make Bertam to a living person to other young people today and in the future. It's very important.
To settle the date of death -
According to the the Auschwitz Death Registers of Auschwitz Birkenau on Yad V Shem he was murdered on August 8, 1942. My grandmother, her parents, her sisters, and their surviving cousins did most of the research on this as well as other cousins, an Aunt and an Uncle who were murdered years ago.
Why he and others were murdered at a young age shouldn't be a debate...
I have not read about the details for a long time now. But some migth have been discovered since your relative made their research. Some have been written about the development of Auschwitz - Birkenau. The Nazis didn't empty Netehrlands until 1942 and the extinsion gas chambers part of Birkenau was not built until later that year.
It was a kombination of "koncentration" of prisoners to use for slavery and later on for extinsion. They, the nazis, needed the strong young men as slaves. As long as they could work with e.g. building the owens, the houses, in the farms around, builing roads they were used. That was a "slow form" of murdering. But why Bertram? And as early in August 1942? They had started to gas children, week and old.
Ask the librarians in Berlin or Auschwitz if there is any more information today.
As Bertram arrived and surrvived for a while he had his name changed into a tatued number. And there must be a motivation to his death in the archives. He was there because he was a jew, as every one else. Did he get ill or punished and died/was killed by that reason. Why did they kill a young man like him?? They needed him as a slaveworker!
I belive you know a lot but I although send a link to [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Auschwitz_concentration_camp English Wikipedia].