Where to send my grandfather's memoir?
August 20, 2016 5:09 PM   Subscribe

I recently finished editing my grandfather's memoir and I'm wondering what institutions may be interested in a copy. He is a German Jew (b. Halberstadt) who left for San Francisco in 1934. Topics: his early childhood (family life, local businesses, Jewish life/education, shifts under Nazi regime), the voyage, a good deal about growing up in San Francisco in the 30s and 40s, some WWII Army engineer anecdotes of France/Belgium, Berkeley in the 50s, the technology industry, MIT in the 60s, and more.

I figure the US Holocaust Memorial Museum might keep this sort of material. Where else? California or SF-focused archives?

I'm sure most of it will only be of interest to his family, but who knows what nuggets genealogists and historians may find!
posted by waninggibbon to Society & Culture (8 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: The USC Shoah Foundation has a list of places your might try, including the Holocaust Center of Northern California at the Jewish Family and Children's Service Holocaust Center.

The Bancroft Library at UC Berkeley has a History of Science & Technology Collection as well.
posted by mogget at 5:24 PM on August 20, 2016 [2 favorites]

Oh crud, can't remember the name of it but (maybe?) US center for jewish studies (?) in Philidelphia, PA
posted by sexyrobot at 5:57 PM on August 20, 2016

I am on a mailing list of WWI veterans and historians and interested folks, and we would love to see it, if you are willing to share.

I requested (and received!) some free web hosting space from ibiblio.org to share my own grandpa's WWII story; if you want to put it online, that could work.

Or maybe at Archive.org?

The more exposure, the better, I say. And good on you for doing that important work!!
posted by wenestvedt at 5:59 PM on August 20, 2016 [2 favorites]

The JCCSF might have some pointers if they themselves don't have a way to take it.
posted by rhizome at 7:38 PM on August 20, 2016

Best answer: Check with the Contemporary Jewish Museum of SF and the SF Museum and Historical Society - if not for their collections, then at least for their recommendations and contacts.
posted by Miko at 7:44 PM on August 20, 2016 [1 favorite]

Can you let us know where it ends up? I would love to read it.
posted by The Toad at 8:11 PM on August 20, 2016

Response by poster: Thanks to everyone for the suggestions! I will need my grandfather's OK before I send copies anywhere. He wrote the memoir with his immediate family in mind (but no harm in some prospective inquiry).

In any case, here is a photo of my grandfather (right, age 12) and his younger brother aboard the ship to the US. They made a stop in San Diego, where he reports that the local children laughed at his shorts (apparently a fashion no-no). When they arrived in San Francisco, his mother immediately went and bought him a pair of long corduroy pants.
posted by waninggibbon at 8:46 AM on August 21, 2016 [2 favorites]

You should inquire at the San Francisco History Center.
posted by RedEmma at 10:49 AM on August 21, 2016

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