• Das Goldene Buch = The Golden Book

Das Goldene Buch

The Golden Book

Archival Item

Resource TypeDocuments
Title NoteTitle taken from outer cover of object.
Date of Creation[192-?]
GenrePublications & Ephemera
Administrative/Biographical HistoryPaul Meyer (b. October 9, 1916, d. September 14, 2003) and Max Meyer (b. February 22, 1913, d. April 1, 2004) were born in Cologne, Germany to parents Eugen Meyer (b. August 8, 1880 Cologne, d. October 10, 1964 Vancouver) and Alice née Jonas (b. circa 1890). Eugen Meyer ran a lace and tulle fashion business, M. Meyer & Co., founded by his father, Max Meyer (b. 1848 Bubenheim, Germany, d. 1896 Calais, France) in Cologne, around 1870. Eugen took the business over in the late 1890s, after the death of his father, and ran it with his uncle, Ernest, an accountant. At its height the business employed 300 workers.

Eugen Meyer served as a soldier in the German army in the First World War and wrote a diary of his and his unit’s experiences. Eugen’s brother, Alfred Meyer (b. 1882), also a soldier in the German army, was killed in France in 1918. Ernst Jonas, father of Alice, died on March 17, 1919 while a prisoner of war. Alice’s sister, Lucie Jonas, was married to Heinrich Frank; both were killed in Sobibor in 1943.

After the Nazis came to power in Germany, the Meyer siblings and other Jewish children were forbidden to attend school. Paul was arrested during Kristallnacht and sent to Dachau. Max, a salesman, was in Hanover on business and was not arrested on that night; he was able to buy a visa on the black market to help Paul get out of Dachau. The brothers were told they had to leave Germany or be interned. They obtained passports and a transit visa with help from an uncle, and then arranged passports for their parents. The Meyers paid high taxes upon leaving Germany.

The Meyers applied to immigrate to Canada and received special permission from the Commissioner of Immigration early in 1939, but their plans were cancelled at the outbreak of the Second World War. The family was able to leave Antwerp for New York in October, 1939, and then travelled by train to a camp outside of Montreal.

They settled in Vancouver, BC, where Paul and Max started a pottery business and their mother, Alice, worked for the Red Cross. In 1954, Paul returned to Cologne and visited the former location of his family’s lace business, on Apostelnstrasse II. The original building was damaged but the basement remained intact. Paul retrieved samples and other materials produced by M. Meyer & Co. in the basement and brought these materials back to Vancouver.
Extent & Medium1 booklet : 22.5 x 14.5 cm
Scope & ContentItem is a copy of a 1901 sermon given by Rabbi Dr. Frank entitled, “The Four Parties at the Red Sea—A Picture of the Present.” The sermon was published (as the booklet notes) “upon the request of the Jewish Community.” In the text, the German political scene is examined using the Biblical story of the Jews at the Red Sea. The item is made of one signature of shiny, off-white paper. The signature is saddle-stitched with metal to a dusty-blue paper cover. The paper signature and cover are attached to a hard cover by a gold and brown cord; the outer cover is golden bronze and iridescent blue. Taped to the inside of the front outer cover is a piece of white cardstock.
Caption, signatures and inscriptionsMachine printed in black ink in the upper left corner is DR. HEINZ FRANK/ RECHTSANWALT; in the upper right corner, machine printed in black ink, is KÖLN/ HANSA RING 39. Handwritten in pencil at the top of the white cardstock in the year 1929. In the middle of the cardstock, handwritten in black ink, reads Paulchen Meyer/ zum 13. Geburtstage./ Onkel Heinz, or “To Paulchen Meyer/ on his 13th birthday./ Uncle Heinz.”
Physical Characteristics and Technical RequirementsThe item’s cover shows signs of rubbing, that has caused some of the colour to wear away. The paper exhibits signs of discolouration and darkening of edges. The paper around the metal wire stitching shows evidence of rust.
Archival HistoryPrevious item number assigned by the VHEC: 1998.007.003
Existence and Location of Copies
Related Units of Description