Volume 3  –  document 278

On 10 June 1940 the Oberlandrat in Jitschin sets out measures to evict Jews from their apartments and to concentrate them in separate residential areas1NAP, ÚŘP, AMV 114-184–5, box 182. This document has been translated from German.

Letter (Gesch. No. 5-8–0) from the Oberlandrat in Jitschin,2Adolf Möller (b. 1901), administrative official; in the Prussian administrative service from 1925; joined the NSDAP and the SS in 1933; acting mayor of Beuel on the Rhine in 1933; political department head in the Cologne government, 1933–1935; Regierungsrat in 1935; in the Merseburg government, 1935–1937; in the Arnsberg government, 1937/38; head of the department for economics in the Carlsbad government from Oct. 1938 to March 1939; Oberlandrat of Jičín from March 1939. unsigned, to the Bezirkshauptmänner in the Oberlandratsbezirk Jitschin,3Copies of the letter were sent for the information and attention of the Gestapo in Mladá Boleslav and Jičín, to the NSDAP Kreisleitungen in Prague and Hradec Králové, and to the heads of the local NSDAP branch in the Oberlandratsbezirk Jitschin. The officials were informed that: ‘In the utilization of the living space being vacated, consideration is to be given primarily to people recognized as ethnic Germans. Oversized Jewish apartments can, if necessary, be made available to several ethnic German families or also, in exchange for smaller apartments, to German housing interests. If ethnic Germans do not or no longer come into consideration, I request that contact be made with the local Reich German offices for the purpose of housing their employees.’ dated 10 June 1940 (copy)

Re: vacating Jew apartments

When inspecting Jewish businesses and Jewish apartments, I have established that the Jews, particularly in the towns in the district, usually have the largest and best apartments. By contrast, the non-Jewish population, including the German population in particular, in many cases live in apartments that are far too small for their family circumstances, and are often in a disgraceful condition.

Considering this unfair distribution of living space, it is justified and necessary to merge the apartments of the Jews in order to free up living space for the non-Jewish population. Similarly, uncompromising measures must be taken to rid the Jews of any second apartments. This must be brought about by housing several Jewish families that previously had apartments of their own in a single apartment. In the process, vacant and otherwise unusable buildings – such as factory or agricultural premises, storage space, and the like – can also be used in place of apartments, in many cases. The legal basis for these measures is the National Defence Law.4The Czech National Defence Law, issued in May 1936, originally served to protect the country against the threat presented by National Socialist Germany. The category of ‘nationally unreliable person’ (staatlich unzuverlässige Person), which was introduced in this law, was often used against Sudeten Germans: Sammlung der Gesetze und Verordnungen des Čecho-Slovakischen Staates, 1936, no. 131/1936 Sb.

When Jewish families’ apartments are merged, care must be taken, whenever possible, to ensure that Jewish families are housed in specific streets or buildings. This is intended to prevent the Jew apartments from being scattered around the entire urban area.

In terms of procedure, these measures are to be taken in such a way that the Bezirkshauptleute first contact the heads of the local Jewish religious communities and initially leave it to these heads to submit proposals of their own accord. If these proposals do not meet the requirements, additional conditions are to be imposed on the heads of the Jewish religious communities. It is self-evident that above all the best and finest apartments must be vacated. In addition, the heads of the Jewish religious communities are to be involved as appropriate, under official supervision, in the process of merging apartments.

Apartments that become free in this way are destined primarily for Germans in the area who have inadequate or poor-quality apartments. To this end, the Bezirkshauptleute must communicate with the relevant heads of the local NSDAP branches and with the German district or municipal representatives, so that the names of those interested in apartments can be indicated to them from the German side. Utilization of the vacated apartments may take place only with the written consent of the head of the relevant local NSDAP branch. Any living space that is not required by Germans is to be made available to the Czech population.

The measures set forth above are intended primarily for the towns in the district. However, an influx of Jews from these towns into the rural communities in connection with these measures must be avoided at all costs. Accordingly, if need be, the same measures must also be carried out in those rural communities in which apartments are inhabited by Jews, even if no Germans live in the place in question.

You are to report to me on the result of your actions by 30 June and, at the same time, to indicate how many formerly Jewish apartments it has been possible to vacate and to whom these apartments were assigned. I expect you to avoid being influenced by false sentimentality with regard to the measures I have ordered. Instead, keep in view the objective necessity of putting an end to the generally desperate housing situation.

Addendum for Bezirkshauptmänner in Jungbunzlau and Jitschin:

Before carrying out the measures ordered, you are also to communicate with the Gestapo.5On 29 June 1940 the Reich Protector told the Oberlandrat in Jičín that he must first communicate with the Central Office for Jewish Emigration in Prague and should not take any similar action for the time being. On 4 July 1940, Möller informed the Senior Commander of the Security Police and the SD in Prague about the measures carried out thus far: NAP, UŘP, AMV 114-184– 5, box 182.

This document is part of:
German Reich and Protectorate September 1939–September 1941 (Berlin, Boston: De Gruyter, 2020)