The Birth of Estare

In view of the advancing American troops, the SS cleared the Buchenwald HASAG Leipzig subcamp on 13 April 1945, sending some 5,000 female inmates out on death marches. Only a few women unfit to march remained behind, among them the Polish Jew Anna Kurz. She was in the final stages of pregnancy – and gave birth to her daughter Estare the same day.

Miraculously, the child survived. The Americans entered Leipzig on 19 April, liberated the mother and daughter, and took them to an auxiliary hospital. In June 1945, with the aid of the Red Cross, the two left Germany for Switzerland, where the little girl’s father Abraham Kurz joined them a year later. He had survived the Buchenwald Schlieben subcamp and a death march to Terezín.

In 1951, the Kurz family emigrated to the U.S. Estare grew up to become a history teacher and in 1967 married the psychiatrist David Weiser. Today the couple live in New York and have two sons and four grandchildren.

(Jens-Christian Wagner)

Reference: Anne Friebel, “Geboren im KZ: Die Geschichte von Estare Weiser”, Newsletter der Gedenkstätte für Zwangsarbeit Leipzig, 9 (December 2020), pp. 14–16.