Commemoration
&
Remembrance
Emigration

Edgar Sigmund Apolant

born 13.07.1894 Poznań
d. 19.11.1956 New Hempstead/New York

DGIM Honorary Member 1925 – 1933

The life of Edgar Sigmund Apolant (jun.) as a doctor was shaped by his father, Sanitätsrat Edgar Apolant (sen.), who was married to Emma Wolf, the daughter of a banker. Edgar Apolant moved to Bad Kissingen in 1903. His wife and children mainly accompanied him in summer. Apolant had a sanatorium built at Menzelstraße 8, which was completed in 1906 and considerably expanded as early as 1912/13. The sanatorium was closed during the winter (November to February). The family, who had converted from Judaism to Protestantism, kept their main residence in Berlin.1

Studies in Munich

Edgar Sigmund Apolant studied medicine in Munich from the summer semester of 1914.2 His studies were interrupted by the war. Drafted into an intelligence division, he was a lieutenant at the end of the war. He was awarded the Iron Cross II Class and the Order of the Turkish Iron Crescent for his services.3 He continued with his medical studies after the war, first in Munich, then in Würzburg, where he passed his exams in 1923.4 He received his license to practice medicine in 1924.5

Apolant met Valeska Feuerstak, a doctoral student during his studies. They got married in Bad Kissingen in June 1923, but got divorced as soon as 1926. Apolant married Hilda Güssefeld, a Protestant from Wiesbaden, that same year.6

Director of the Bad Kissingen "Sanatorium Dr. Apolant"

Edgar Sigmund Apolant took over the Bad Kissingen sanatorium, specializing in internal medicine and diets, in 1929 at the age of 35 following his father's death. It soon became apparent that the "Sanatorium Dr. Apolant" could not continue as usual during the Nazi era. Only Jews were allowed to be treated there.7

Emigration to New York

Edgar Apolant decided to emigrate in 1935. He boarded the passenger ship "SS Gerolstein" in Antwerp on September 26, 1936. The ship arrived in New York on October 8, 1936.8 Apolant settled in nearby Port Washington and received American citizenship in 1953.9 He found employment at the Manhasset Medical Center as well as the North Shore Hospital in Manhasset on Long Island/New York. He also practiced general medicine. He became a member of the "American Academy of General Practice."10 He moved to the West Coast in 1939, where he accepted the position of senior physician at the upscale Arrowhead Springs Sanitarium near San Bernardino, California.11

Later, Apolant, who had married a third time in Mount Vernon, New York in December 1938, returned to the East Coast. His Estonian wife, Ida Freja Inga Stokkebyen, was born in Reval.12Edgar Sigmund Apolant died in New Hempstead, New York, on November 19, 1956 at the age of 62.13

Mourning of Relatives

Edgar Sigmund Apolant's mother Emma and his aunt Ella – his father's sister born in 1871 – initially remained behind in Bad Kissingen. Emma continued to run the sanatorium after her son's emigration, but was increasingly victimized. she had to put up signs both on the outside and the inside of the house in the spring of 1938 that read "Jüdisches Haus". Her concession was revoked in October 1938. The sanatorium was sold at forced auction against her will and for a price that was clearly too low to the Bayerische Vereinsbank. The almost seventy-year-old managed to escape to New York via Barcelona to join her son in July 1941. She died in New York in December 1948.14 Her sister-in-law Ella fared even worse. She had been employed at Dr. Apolant's sanatorium as a receptionist since its founding and was able to remain so until October 1938. Then she moved to to Rückertstraße 53 in Frankfurt, from where she was taken to the Theresienstadt ghetto on September 15, 1942, where she perished in 1944. Today there is a "Stolperstein" commemorating her in front of the building of the Sanatorium Dr. Apolant.15


References

Cf. Hans-Jürgen Beck/Rudolf Walter, Jüdisches Leben in Bad Kissingen, Bad Kissingen 1990, p. 91; cf. www.biografisches-gedenkbuch-bk.de.Cf. Personalstand der Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München, Sommerhalbjahr 1914, München, 1914 p. 64.Cf. Personalstand der Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München, Sommerhalbjahr 1919, München, 1919, p. XIII, p. LVI.Cf. Deaths, in Journal of the American Medical Association 163.8 (1957), pp. 670-673, p. 671.Cf. Reichsmedizinalkalender 1931, p. 314.Cf. www. biografisches-gedenkbuch-bk.de.Cf. Beck/Walther, Jüdisches Leben, p. 91. On the displacement of Jewish spa guests and physicians, cf. ibid. pp. 83-99.National Archives at Washington, D.C. Records of the Immigration and Naturalization Service. Passenger and Crew Lists of Vessels Arriving at New York, 1897-1957. Year: 1936, Arrival: New York, Microfilm Serial: T715, 1897-1957, Microfilm Roll: 5881, Line: 2; p. 208. Cf. New York Times, 08 Oct. 1936, p. 21.National Archives and Records Administration (NARA); Washington, D.C.. ; Index to Naturalization Petitions of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York, 1865-1957, Microfilm Serial: M1164, Microfilm Roll: 30, No. 5723888Cf. Deaths, 1957, p. 671.Cf. The Los Angeles Times, 12/15/1939, p. 50; The San Bernardino County Sun, 5/22/1940, p. 13.Cf. www.biografisches-gedenkbuch-bk.de.New York Department of Health, Deaths 1956, p. 3, Death Certificate No. 74332.Cf. www. biografisches-gedenkbuch-bk.de.Cf. Sigismund von Dobschütz, Ella Apolant (1871-1944), Receptionist, Menzelstraße 8, in: www.badkissingen.de, ins. Nov. 10, 2019. Cf. also www.biografisches-gedenkbuch-bk.de.

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