Jewish Refugees

Tuesday, 10 January 2017 07:50

We need your help in locating Jewish refugees who came to San Francisco in the late 1930s and 1940 and their descendants.  As restrictions tightened against Jewish people under Nazi rule in Germany, Austria, Poland, Hungary and Czechoslovakia, several hundred Jews applied for entrance to the United States.  They had the good fortune to have relatives and sponsors in the U.S.  After traveling across Russia to China and Japan, they boarded  ships for San Francisco. Dozens of families and individuals ended up at the Angel Island Immigration Station, underwent medical inspection and were detained for weeks because they did not have sufficient funds to reach their eventual destinations.

Erika Lee and Judy Yung recounted the perilous journeys of Alice Edelstein, Alfred and Klara Marill, Hans Singer and Isaak Adler in Angel Island: Immigrant Gateway to America. Recently, AIISF interviewed Eva Schott Berek, Lotte Loebl Frank, and Harry Gluckman, whose stories are posted at  

The database you see below was compiled by volunteers who reviewed files at the National Archives in San Bruno, California.  Please contact AIISF by writing to or call 415-348-9200 if you recognize any of the individuals listed below. We would like to interview the descendants in order to get the full story on these brave and fortunate people who fled the Nazi regime. Most of these refugees lost their entire families in the Holocaust.  Their stories remind us of that genocide must never be allowed to happen again to any group of people. This database also contains names and short profiles of Jewish refugees who came to Angel Island prior to 1939.  After 1915, large numbers of Jews from Russia, Poland, and Lithuania.  Many of them were men who had left their homelands to avoid military conscription.  Families also fled because of anti-Jewish violence.  Many families were able to enter the United States with the help of the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society.


photos: Eva Schott Berek’s passport; Lotte Loeble Frank’s parents;  Harry Gluckman’s father

# File NumberNameSexPlace of BirthDate of BirthDate of ArrivalName of ShipDays in DetentionNotes
 14390/23-11Leibowsky, MendelMRussia18686/1/1915Mongolia1 monthMerchant and clothes presser; Literate;Came via Kobe; Has $50 and paid own passage; Uncle (K. Lipshits) in NY; Wants to buy a farm and provide an education for children in US; Excluded as LPC; Appeal by Lucius L. Solomons; Admitted with furnished ticket to NYC.
 14390/23-05Leiphman, BentsionMRussia18686/1/1915Mongolia3 daysFarmer; Has $885 and paid own passage; Literate; Cousin (Boris Neitenzon) in NYC; Wants to be farmer in US; Admitted
 14776/17-04Lekin, PinhusMRussia188710/27/1915Mongolia2 daysMusician; Literate; Paid own passage; Friend (S. or T. Solomon ) in SF; Admitted
 16832/01-31Leman, AlfredMRussia18791/10/1918Nishi Novgorod20 daysSailor; Literate; Has $2; Resided and married in US and traveled to Russia to visit when arrested by Russians, then released 2 months later and applied for entry back to US; Diagnosed with Bright's Diseased and confined to hospital bed; Excluded as LPC because of medical condition; Appealed but applicant died in immigration hospital 01/26/1918
 14782/02-30Levita, NosonMRussia189210/30/1915Panama Maru2 daysStudent; Literate; Paid own passage; Friend (Vanberg) in MA; Admitted
 40384/14-3Levitan, Rosa KowarshaFPoland187910/25/1940President Cleveland1 dayLithuanian citizen; Widow; Teacher; Literate; Came via Lithuania; Has $1 and brother in law paid passage; In US 1935-39; Destined to brother in law (Naftole Feinerman) in Brooklyn for permanent residence; Lithuanian passport with reentry permit to US; Left US to settle property in Lithuania but war broke out and was stranded there; Witness called (Greta Elspore) - will loan money to applicant to purchase transport; Admitted 10/25/1940.
 15307/05-20Levitas, LeifMRussia18946/11/1916Panama Maru1 monthIron Worker; Paid own passage, Literate; Came via Yokohama to avoid conscription; Excluded as LPC because of valvular disease of the heart; Appeal by HIAS; Admitted 07/17/1916; NOTE: Real name is David Brussilufsky.
 14776/21-23Liberman, MosesMRussia189310/27/1915Mongolia3 weeksWanted to avoid conscription; Woodchopper; Literate; Father paid passage; Cousin (Kyap Altshuler) in SF; Has $3.50; Cousin (Herman Altshuler) called to witness; Excluded as LPC; HIAS request case be reopened with new evidence of a railroad ticket to NY; O
 naLifszyc/Lifshitz, David/DawidMRussia19065/15/1941Tatuta MaruUnknown
 36166/13-3Lipkovsky, EvaFRussia264/10/1936Tenyo Maru1 dayHeld for proof of status; Lived in Dairen; Has $400; Dressmaker; Coming to enter designing school in SF, and shop for business in Japan; formerly a citizen of Russia under the Czar, now a citizen of no country with emigrant passport from Chinese government; Has ticket from SF to Japan; Attended school in Shanghai and Brussels; Admitted 4/11/36 on $500 bond as visitor; Departed 4/23/40
 40085/15-13Litvin, Daliy MeerMRussia286/16/1940Asama Maru5 weeksSalesman and manager; Lived in Dairen and traveled between Shanghai and Tietsin; Has $110 in traveler's checks and $9; Going to NY; Chinese passport from Tietsin and visa, birth certificate, affidavits and letters of ref; Going to work at NY branch; Uncle in America; $125 for passage paid by employer; Excluded as contract laborer, passage paid b anotther, and LPC; Appeals thru attorney; Admitted 7/25/40.
 14255/28-07Livian, ManosMRussia18924/5/1915Korea1 dayFarm Laborer and deals with farm products; Literate; Has $45 and paid own passage; Lived in Harbin and came via Kobe; Coming to look for work and has a cousin (Apargament) in NY; Brachman as witness assumes responsibility for applicant; Admitted with HIAS support.
 15354/23-06Lobatch, NataliaFRussia18946/26/1916Shinyo Maru1 dayPolish; Wife; Literate; Heading to New Haven, CT accompanied by husband and baby born at sea; Admitted
 14053/03-08Locktov, MaxMRussia18841/9/1915Ventura6 daysPresser of clothes; Literate; Has $6 and paid own passage; Joining brother (Boris Rifkin) in SF; Came via Australia; Naturalized Australian citizen; In US to visit brother and mother in Chicago; 2 witnesses (A.B. Herzberg, friend of the brother, and Benjamin Rifkin, brother of applicant); Admitted with ease.
 40253/05-10Loebel, AmaliaFPoland42 yrs8/28/1940Rakuyo Maru2 weeksGerman citizen; Housewife; Literate; Came via Vienna, Germany; Passage paid by husband; Accom by husband (Ludwig Loebel), daughters (Hertha and Lotte); German passport and quota immig visa; Destined to nephew in law (Leo Cohen) in Bronx NY for permanent residence; NOTE: Husband worked for the Jewish Relief Society in Vienna as a cook; Admitted 09/10/1940
 40253/5-7 & 8Loeble/Loble, LeopoldMnaUnknown8/28/1940Rakuyo MaruLeo and his wife Pauline were both detained because they lacked sufficient ticket to their final destination of New Jersey and was only carrying $10. They claimed that they have additional documents in their trunks but were not allowed access to their truck upon being detained.
 40253/5-7 & 8Loeble/Loble, PaulineFnaUnknown8/28/1940Rakuyo MaruLeo and his wife Pauline were both detained because they lacked sufficient ticket to their final destination of New Jersey and was only carrying $10. They claimed that they have additional documents in their trunks but were not allowed access to their truck upon being detained.
 14390/23-03Lokshin, ItskoMRussia18846/1/1915Mongolia2 weeksBookbinder; Literate; Cousin in Boston; Came via Kobe; Has $25 and paid own passage; Russian passport; Looking for work in SF; Excluded as LPC; Appeal by Solomon; Admitted 06/18/1915; NOTE: Several letters discussing Lokshin's lost baggage while in detention; Chinese quarters searched; referred to Teele Draying Co., 764 Clay St.
 15153/39-8Lumelski, MorduhMRussia18924/10/1916Shinyo Maru1 monthTechnial Dept of Water Company; Literate; Wanted to avoid the war; Excluded as LPC; Appeal by HIAS; Admitted 05/05/1916; NOTE: Real name is Morduh Mardovich.
 14776/21-20Luntsu, ZalimanMRussia189110/27/1915Mongolia3 weeksStudent; Literate; Paid own passage; Sister (Samil Liser) in SF; Admitted.