Dr. Albert Menasche (1898-1991)
Dr. Menasche was a prominent figure in the Sephardic Community of Salonica. Before the war, he served as secretary of the Communal Council, and was the director of the Ben Ouzilizio Maternity Hospital, the Azilo de Locos/Kasa de Salud, the Carlo Allatini Orphanage for Boys and the Mair Aboav Orphanage for Girls. He was also vice president of the well-known Baron Hirsch Hospital.
Dr. Menasche was deported to Birkenau on June 8, 1943; he survived as a member of the Men's Orchestra. (He was a gifted flutist). He watched as the Nazis slowly annihilated his entire family ­ brothers and sisters, his beloved wife and their 16 year old daughter. His poignant, eyewitness account, Birkenau, became widely known in Greece and the U.S. and was printed in several languages. Its popularity briefly heightened the awareness of the suffering and hardships of the Jews of Salonica and Greece. As a tribute to his years of service and dedication, a revised edition of his out-of-print book, Birkenau, is being planned by the Foundation. The reprint will contain rare photos from Dr. Menasche's private collection as well as excerpts from interviews with the Doctor and his acquaintances.
Upon returning to Salonica in 1945, he was elected president of the community, and director of the Clinique Pinhas. He worked with a handful of survivors in rebuilding the Jewish community in Salonica.
He emigrated to America in 1951, and was Physician-in-Residence at the Sephardic Home for the Aged in Brooklyn for over 25 years.
With the passing of Dr. Albert Menasche came the remembrance of the significant legacy he left behind. Not only did Dr. Menasche leave a reputation of many years of dedicated service in Salonica as a strong community leader and medical practitioner, but he also recorded his memories in a rare published account of his life as a victim of Nazi persecution. As one of the few Sephardim who survived the annihilation camps, Dr. Menasche's account of his experience at Auschwitz was one of the first of its kind to tell the fate of the Greek Jews.




Dr. Albert Menache
Birkenau (Auschwitz II)
How 72,000 Greek Jews Perished

Foundation for the Advancement of Sephardic Studies and Culture
ISBN 1-886857-03-2
185 pages, b&w photos
Published after his return to Salonica in 1945, and translated into English in 1947
Robert Bedford info@sephardicstudies.org