WANTED (by Edith): Gerda Katz, not 'Gertie'

  • May 20, 2010
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Passport photos: Gerda Katz and Edith Westerfeld

In our quest to find my mother’s old friend, “Gertie Katz,” we discovered that my mother had the wrong spelling of her friend’s name.

That’s not surprising, given that the two knew each other when they were 12 years old — seventy-three years ago.

The two girls immigrated together on the Deutschland. The ship left Bremen, Germany on a cold, gray day, March 8, 1938 and arrived in New York City on a sun-splashed March 19, 1938. Gertie and Edith became inseparable on the ship. (See blog below: WANTED (by Edith) Gertie Kahn of Seattle)

We contacted the One Thousand Children Foundation (OTC), asking for any information about “Gertie.” Here is the response from the OTC that identified our error:

dear edith,

yes, there is a gerda katz in the otc database who arrived in the us on 3 19 38 but we have never found her. perhaps you can find a lead from the archivists at YIVO (http://www.yivo.org) where indivudual otc childrens’ files exist.

good luck


Here is the passenger record the OTC included in the email:

188.00 19380319 Katz Gerda

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