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Hanni Sondheimer Vogelweid Collection



Biographical Note

Scope and Contents

Administrative Information

Detailed Description

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Hanni Sondheimer Vogelweid Collection, 1941-2003 | Special Collections & Archives

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Collection Overview

Title: Hanni Sondheimer Vogelweid Collection, 1941-2003Save to your list.

Predominant Dates:1941-1946


Primary Creator: Vogelweid, Hanni Sondheimer (1923-2006)

Extent: 0.21 Linear Feet

Date Acquired: 03/18/2010

Forms of Material: Paper records, Publications

Languages: English, Chinese, German


Hanni Sondheimer Vogelweid was born on October 5, 1923, in Berlin, Germany. Her family was living in Lithuania when World War II began, and fled to Japan in an attempt to emigrate to America where they had relatives. This did not work out, and the family was forced to move to Shanghai, as they had become officially stateless upon leaving Lithuania. Vogelweid lived in Shanghai from 1941 to 1946, and during the war was forced to live in the Hongkew ghetto with other Jewish refugees. The collection consists of personal documents Vogelweid used when she lived in Shanghai, including correspondence, vital records,  personal identification documents, and some publications.

Biographical Note

Hanni Sondheimer Vogelweid was born on October 5, 1923, in Berlin, Germany, to Moritz and Setty Sondheimer. The family moved from Germany to Estonia to do business, and later settled in Kaunas, Lithuania. At the start of World War II, the family, who was Jewish, began to look for a way out of Lithuania, as anti-semitism was rising in Eastern Europe. They were issued a visa to Japan by Chiune Sugihara, the Japanese vice consul in Lithuania credited with saving thousands of Jews by providing transit visas, and left Lithuania in February of 1941 with money sent from American relatives.

They traveled to Yokohama, Japan, where they stayed for six months waiting for their American visa paperwork. At that point their transit visas had expired, and they were forced to leave Japan for Shanghai, which did not require any paperwork. The Sondheimers, who were now considered stateless, were able to acquire a room in Shanghai with the money they had left over from the planned move to America, and they stayed until 1943. They were then forced to move into the Hongkew ghetto, formally known as the Restricted Sector for Stateless Refugees, where the Japanese forced 20,000 Jewish and other refugees during the war. As the war went on and the family needed money, Vogelweid and her younger brother got jobs working in a Chinese weaving factory.

After the war, Vogelweid worked for the US Army as a waitress and a switchboard operator. She then emigrated to the United States in 1946, after marrying Alfred Marion Gade, a First Lieutenant in the U.S. Army. They had one daughter, but the marriage ended soon after, and she later married Lloyd Vogelweid.

Scope and Contents of the Materials

The Hanni Sondheimer Vogelweid Collection primarily consists of Vogelweid's personal documents dated between 1941 and 1946, when she lived in Shanghai.  It includes personal correspondence, identification documents, her immunization certificate, marriage certificates, passport affidavits, and a visa.  The collection also contains publications related to the Old China Hand experience, including Jewish World Review, The Rickshaw Express, and the Shanghai Herald. The collection is arranged alphabetically by folder title.

Administrative Information

Repository: Special Collections & Archives

Access Restrictions: The collection is open for research use.

Use Restrictions: Copyright for unpublished materials authored or otherwise produced by the creator(s) of this collection has not been transferred to California State University, Northridge. Copyright status for other materials is unknown. Transmission or reproduction of materials protected by U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.) beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners. Works not in the public domain cannot be commercially exploited without permission of the copyright owners. Responsibility for any use rests exclusively with the user.

Acquisition Source: Lloyd Vogelweid

Related Materials:

Old China Hands Archives

Hanni Sondheimer Vogelweid family collection at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

Oral history interview with Hanni Vogelweid at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

Preferred Citation: For information about citing items in this collection consult the appropriate style manual, or see the Citing Archival Materials guide.

Processing Information: Tim Kaufler, 2012

Finding Aid Revision History: Jessica Geiser, 2013

Box and Folder Listing

Browse by Box:

[Box 1],

Box 1Save to your list.
Folder 1: Correspondence: Red Cross, Immunization, and U.S. Army Command, September 1942-September 1946Save to your list.
Folder 2: Correspondence: Western Union Telegrams, December 1946Save to your list.
Folder 3: "From Shanghai to Vegas," Gluckman, Ron, June 1999Save to your list.
Folder 4: Identification Certificates, September 1941-July 1945Save to your list.
Folder 5: Identification Certificates and Armband, December 1941Save to your list.
Folder 6: Immunization Certificates, 1946Save to your list.
Folder 7: Jewish World Review, February 1998Save to your list.
Folder 8: Los Angeles Times, November 1981-November 2002Save to your list.
Folder 9: Marriage Certificates, September 1946Save to your list.
Folder 10: The Old China Hand PressSave to your list.
Folder 11: Old China Hands Reunion, December 1995Save to your list.
Folder 12: Publications: Old Shanghai Articles, 1986-2010Save to your list.
Folder 13: Old China Hands Reunion "The Legacy Continues", September 1996Save to your list.
Folder 14: Passport Affidavits, December 1946Save to your list.
Folder 15: The Rickshaw Express Web, September 2001Save to your list.
Folder 16: The Rickshaw Express Web, March 2002Save to your list.
Folder 17: The Rickshaw Express Web, April 2002Save to your list.
Folder 18: San Diego Jewish Journal, June 2003Save to your list.
Folder 19: The Scribe, December 1998Save to your list.
Folder 20: Shanghai: A City for Jews in China, March 2002Save to your list.
Folder 21: The Shanghai HeraldSave to your list.
Folder 22: Shanghai RefugeSave to your list.
Folder 23: Visa and Census Forms, 1941Save to your list.
Folder 24: Women Rescuers Testimonial, March 2002Save to your list.
Folder 25: Work Recommendations and Permit, January 1944-August 1946Save to your list.
Folder 26: Yuan, 1941-1980Save to your list.

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[Box 1],

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