What happened at Kornhausgasse 8 in 1936/7?

Searching for Traces by Carolin Mücke

Sear­ching for Traces, by Caro­lin Mücke, Jewish Stu­dies, Freiburg

The Jewish Muse­um of Switz­er­land was foun­ded almost six­ty years ago in Basel’s Korn­haus­gas­se 8. What was the histo­ry of the house? Bar­ba­ra Häne, his­to­ri­an and Jewish Muse­um employee, dis­co­ve­r­ed a refe­rence in the book «Beweg­te Zei­ten» by Noë­mi Sibold –foot­no­te num­ber 72 on page 254 – that the pro­per­ty had pro­vi­ded shel­ter for refu­gees in the 1930s. To veri­fy this infor­ma­ti­on, I went to the Sta­te Archi­ves of Basel-Stadt. Thanks to the gui­d­ance of the team of the Sta­te Archi­ves, I sear­ched through the annu­al reports of the Israe­li­ti­sche Für­sor­ge und Armen­pfle­ge (Jewish Cha­ri­ty and Care for the Poor) of the Jewish Com­mu­ni­ty of Basel with the inven­to­ry num­ber StABS, IGB-REGa H 4 (1). Accord­ing to the annu­al reports of 1936 and 1937, the Jewish Cha­ri­ty, «Israe­li­ti­sche Für­sor­ge», had its office pre­mi­ses at Korn­haus­gas­se 8. Thanks to beds pro­vi­ded by the Red Cross, the Jewish community’s vice-pre­si­dent at the time, Charles Nord­mann, was able to pro­vi­de shel­ter for 477 refu­gees while they wai­ted to emi­gra­te, in some cases for several months.

For the histo­ry of Switz­er­land, the fact that the house had once shel­te­red Jewish refu­gees is of gre­at impor­t­ance. We would like to invi­te anyo­ne who per­so­nal­ly remem­bers the histo­ry of Korn­haus­gas­se 8 to con­ta­ct us.

verfasst am 06.05.2022