Duifje and Albert van Haren fonds
Fonds / Archival Collection
Extent & Medium7 textual records and 1 artefact
Date[c. 1940] – 13 Oct. 1944
Administrative/Biographical HistoryDuifje (Delia) van Haren (née van Dam) was born in Gorinchem, Netherlands, on December 18, 1917 to parents Abraham van Dam (b. 28 March 1885, d. 26 October 1942) and Emma Goldstein (b. 1 January 1881, d. 14 June 1929). She had two older brothers, Philip van Dam (b. 22 May 1912, d. 31 December 1942) and Samuel van Dam (b. 5 July 1914, d. 1 April 2013), and was raised in a secular family. In 1929 her mother passed away and her father remarried a religious woman, Betsy van Dam (née Kleinkramer, b. 1895, d. 26 October 1942). She had minimal Jewish education and finished her secular education in the ninth grade.
Albert Jacob van Haren was born on September 24, 1918 in Rotterdam, Netherlands to parents Eva Wolf van Haren (b. 1883, d. 1943) and Solomon van Haren (b. 1878, d. 1943). He had one sibling, Joseph Soesman van Haren (b. 1910, d. 1941).
Duifje and Albert met through Duifje’s father in 1941 after the Nazi occupation of the Netherlands. They received their civil marriage on April 10, 1942 and their Jewish marriage on April 15, 1942 in Gorinchem. Shortly before their wedding, Albert’s brother Joseph was arrested and murdered at Mauthausen. In August, 1942, Albert became a member of the Joodsche Raad voor Amsterdam (the Jewish Council of Amsterdam) in order to delay his deportation. Despite this, Nazis came to deport Albert, Duifje and Duifje’s father and stepmother on October 15, 1942; Albert and Duifje successfully escaped through their back door, however Duifje’s father and stepmother were arrested and murdered at Auschwitz. The couple hid with the assistance of Samuel’s friend who was a member of the resistance. Later that year, Duifje’s brother Philip along with his wife and child were also deported and murdered at Auschwitz.
Duifje and Albert moved through various hiding places until the Netherlands was liberated on May 4, 1945. Following the War, the couple adopted a Jewish war orphan and had four more children together. In 1952, Duifje’s brother Samuel moved to Canada with his family, and the van Haren family applied to move to New Zealand but were rejected. In 1953 they moved to Canada due to the onset of the Korean War and fears of another war in Europe; they first lived in Edmonton, and then in Calgary for twenty years. The couple retired in Victoria, where Albert died on November 18, 1980. Duifje moved to a retirement home in Vancouver, where she passed away on September 17, 2021.
Scope & ContentFonds consists of eight records accumulated by Duifje and Albert van Haren during the Second World War in the Netherlands. Textual records include ration cards, a permit to enter a synagogue for their wedding, Albert’s identification card from the Joodesche Raad voor Amsterdam, a fraudulent doctor’s note written to excuse Albert from hard labour and fraudulent identification papers. The collection also contains a yellow Jewish star badge (Judenstar) worn by Duifje during the war.
Archival HistoryAccession: 1993.060
Immediate Source of Acquisition or TransferRecords in fonds were donated to the Vancouver Holocaust Centre Society by Duifje van Haren in 1993.
AccrualsNo further accruals are expected.
NoteSource of information: Item-level descriptions were supplied and enhanced from legacy FileMaker Pro catalogue records.
Legacy catalogue records from FileMaker Pro enhanced and ingested with funding from Library & Archives Canada Documentary Heritage Communities Program.
System of ArrangementArrangement provided by the archivist. Records are arranged in chronological order.
RightsRights to materials in fonds transferred to the VHCS in deed of gift signed in 1993.
Rules or ConventionsISAD(G) informed by RAD. Museum item described according to CDWA.
Archivist's NoteArranged and described by Chase Nelson and Caitlin Donaldson.
Date of Description2022