Alex's Wake: The Tragic Voyage of the St. Louis to Flee Nazi Germany--and a Grandson's Journey of Love and Remembrance

Alex's Wake: The Tragic Voyage of the St. Louis to Flee Nazi Germany--and a Grandson's Journey of Love and Remembrance

by Martin Goldsmith

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Overview

Alex's Wake: The Tragic Voyage of the St. Louis to Flee Nazi Germany--and a Grandson's Journey of Love and Remembrance by Martin Goldsmith

Alex's Wake is a tale of two parallel journeys undertaken seven decades apart. In the spring of 1939, Alex and Helmut Goldschmidt were two of more than 900 Jewish refugees fleeing Nazi Germany aboard the St. Louis, “the saddest ship afloat” (New York Times). Turned away from Cuba, the United States, and Canada, the St. Louis returned to Europe, a stark symbol of the world's indifference to the gathering Holocaust. The Goldschmidts disembarked in France, where they spent the next three years in six different camps before being shipped to their deaths in Auschwitz.

In the spring of 2011, Alex's grandson, Martin Goldsmith, followed in his relatives' footsteps on a six-week journey of remembrance and hope, an irrational quest to reverse their fate and bring himself peace. Alex's Wake movingly recounts the detailed histories of the two journeys, the witnesses Martin encounters for whom the events of the past are a vivid part of a living present, and an intimate, honest attempt to overcome a tormented family legacy.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780306823718
Publisher: Da Capo Press
Publication date: 03/31/2015
Edition description: First Trade Paper Edition
Pages: 352
Sales rank: 319,057
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.60(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

Martin Goldsmith is a host and classical music programmer for Symphony Hall on Sirius XM Satellite Radio and previously hosted NPR's daily classical music program, Performance Today, from 1989 to 1999. He is the author of The Inextinguishable Symphony and lives in Maryland.

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Table of Contents

1 Setting Forth 1

2 Sachsenhagen 14

3 Oldenburg 32

4 Hamburg 74

5 The Voyage of the St. Louis 90

6 Boulogne-sur-Mer 131

7 Martigny-les-Bains 143

8 Montauban 170

9 Agde 199

10 Rivesaltes 212

11 Les Milles 234

12 Drancy 271

13 Auschwitz 282

14 Coming Home 306

Acknowledgments 327

Bibliography 331

Index 333

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