State to recognize Burgaw community that provided refuge for Hol - WECT TV6-WECT.com:News, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

State to recognize Burgaw community that provided refuge for Holocaust survivors

Walter Loeb, right, and another student are pictured on a school bus bound for Penderlea School. (Source: Pender County Library) Walter Loeb, right, and another student are pictured on a school bus bound for Penderlea School. (Source: Pender County Library)
Jewish-American children study at Penderlea School. (Source: Pender County Library) Jewish-American children study at Penderlea School. (Source: Pender County Library)
Helen Loeb sews in her kitchen in the Van Eeden community. (Source: Pender County Library) Helen Loeb sews in her kitchen in the Van Eeden community. (Source: Pender County Library)
The Van Eeden community near Burgaw was a safe haven for Jewish refugees who fled Nazi Germany. (Source: Pender County Library) The Van Eeden community near Burgaw was a safe haven for Jewish refugees who fled Nazi Germany. (Source: Pender County Library)
PENDER COUNTY, NC (WECT) -

A state highway historical marker commemorating Jewish refugee families rescued from the Holocaust will be dedicated in Pender County.

Nine Jewish families settled into a community near Burgaw in 1939 after escaping Germany. They will be honored with the historical marker dedication April 18 at 2 p.m. at the Pender County Library.

The free program will honor the organizer of the rescue, Dr. Alvin Johnson, and feature stories of the families who were saved.

Speakers at the event include:

  • Jerry Klinger, president of the Jewish American Society for Historic Preservation 
  • Susan Taylor Block, author of the book Van Eeden, which is the name of the Burgaw community where the families settled
  • Michael Hill, NC Division of Archives and History research branch supervisor

Special guest Ann Wolf Loeb will also attend. She arrived at Van Eeden from Germany with her family in 1940. 

Festivities will begin with a meet and greet at 1:30 followed by the 2 p.m. program. Afterward, those in attendance can attend the unveiling of the marker about five miles north of Burgaw.

For more information, contact Mike Taylor with the Pender County library at mtaylor@pendercountync.gov or call 910-259-1234.

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