"Opa had hidden
his family secret
not from us,
but for us."

Introduction

One human life and six years. That’s the age of Grandpa’s secret. Then it rose from the silent depths, and we, the grandchildren, began plunging into the past to follow its trail – back through one GDR generation; through the tormenting years Opa spent on the Eastern Front, from the Baltic States to Leningrad, Kiev and Italy; back to his apprenticeship as a baker in Lusatia, and further back into a country unknown to us – Poland. His trail took us back through the expulsion of our great-grandparents during World War I; back through one century or three generations of Meieranz trying their luck in the up-and-coming textile capital of Lodz; all the way back to a small town on the periphery, Alexandrow, where the Meieranz were called Aaron and Ruchele and Fayge and Shymon.

Gallery