Barban family papers

Language of Description
Alt. Identifiers
  • 2018.423.1
1 Jan 1939 - 31 Dec 1940
Level of Description
EHRI Partner

Extent and Medium




Biographical History

Andreas Barban (1914-1993) was born on 5 February 1914 to Heinrich (1876-1962) and Olga (née Margulies, 1875-?) Barban in Leipzig, Germany. Heinrich, an attorney, and Olga, a teacher, enrolled Andreas in the Thomasschule and König Albert Gymnasium as preparation for an eventual legal career. Following the introduction of Nazi laws restricting the number of Jewish students across academic programs Andreas was forced to give up his hopes of studying law at university. Instead, Andreas entered the Leipzig Conservatory of Music where he studied piano and conducting. Following Kristallnacht Andreas and Heinrich were arrested with other Jewish men from the city and interned at Sachsenhausen. Heinrich remained in the camp for nearly 2 weeks before his release while Andreas was imprisoned until the end of December 1938. Andreas, who had contracted diptheria during his time in the camp, was only permitted to leave after his father secured his passage to Shanghai. In 1939 the Barbans emigrated from Nazi Germany. While waiting in Genoa on the ship to Shanghai Andreas met Bronislawa Berljawsky (later Betty,1915-2013), a young woman who had fled from Vienna with her parents, Moisei and Tauba Berljawsky. The Berljawskys, originally from Przemyśl, Poland, experienced persecution following the annexation of Austria.This included the seizure of their photography business and prompted their efforts to flee Europe. While enroute to Shanghai Bronislawa (later Betty) and Andreas became engaged. The couple married upon their arrival. To support themselves Andreas offered piano lessons while Bronislawa assisted her parents in their photography business. The young couple, who had welcomed a son while living in Shanghai, decided to immigrate to Canada in 1947 with help from Maurice Wilansky, and acquaintance of Bronislawa's brother Joseph. The Barbans settled in St. John's, Newfoundland, where Andreas pursued a career in music and became conductor of the St. John's Symphony Orchestra.

Archival History

United States Holocaust Memorial Museum


United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Gregory Barban

Donated to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum by Gregory Barban in 2018.

Scope and Content

Consists of Reisepass passports issued to Andreas, Heinrich, and Olga (née Margulies) Barban of Leipzig, Germany prior to their immigration to Shanghai. Also included is the Reisepass of Bronislawa (Betty) Berljawsky, later Barban, formerly of Vienna, Austria. Original notes found within the passports of Heinrich and Olga discouraging the inclusion of the names "Israel" and "Sara" in future identity documents are also evident.

System of Arrangement

Arranged as a single series.



This description is derived directly from structured data provided to EHRI by a partner institution. This collection holding institution considers this description as an accurate reflection of the archival holdings to which it refers at the moment of data transfer.