In 2017, the Museum debuted the exhibition My Name Is: The Lost Children of Kloster Indersdorf. This series of blog posts highlights the photographs and biographies included in the exhibition.
Julius Weiss was born in Borysław, Poland in 1929. After the German occupation in 1941, nearly all of the Jews in the region were killed or deported. In 1943, his mother was murdered when caught carrying food from another town. During the war, Julius spent four years in the Borysław ghetto and then at the camps of Płaszów, Wieliczka, and Flossenbürg. While working at Flossenbürg, Julius and a small group of prisoners became adept at sabotaging German airplane parts.
The American Army liberated Julius during a death march out of Flossenbürg in May of 1945. He recuperated at the Hotel Gres in Cham, where he worked for the Americans until being transfered to Kloster Indersdorf in October. Julius and other boys from Indersdorf went to England to learn maritime trades, and Julius completed his training in late April of 1947. He went on to become an officer in both the British and Israeli Merchant Marines, and fought in the Israeli War of Independence— which he saw as partial redemption.
In 1956 he came to the United States where he married and had a family, including a son—Herbert Isaac Weiss—whom he named after his father, Eisig. He spent most of his life in New York City.
Boys out of Flossenbürg
Some of the earliest arrivals at Kloster Indersdorf were Jewish boys who had survived the death marches out of the Flossenbürg concentration camp.
As US Forces approached Flossenbürg in late April of 1945, most prisoners were forced onto trains heading in the direction of Dachau. When trains suffered damage from attack, the prisoners were forced to march on foot through grueling conditions. Many were liberated by American soldiers near Stamsried on April 23, 1945. After liberation, most went to makeshift field hospitals including Neunburg vorm Wald, Weiden, Stulln, and Meissenberg.
Many of the teens stayed together with friends they had been with in the camps and arrived at Kloster Indersdorf with a fierce loyalty to one another. When these teenage boys arrived at Kloster Indersdorf in August of 1945, they received white sweaters that were on hand at the center. Several of the boys are shown wearing the sweaters in these photographs taken in October of 1945.