Hanna Strauss

born on 11/11/1893 in Strasbourg
died on 01/26/1993 in New York

DGIM Member 1932 – 1934

Johanna ("Hanna") Lange grew up in Strasbourg as the daughter of the lawyer and legal advisor Siegfried Lange and his wife Elise, née Hüttenbach. She had an older sister, Gertrud (1889-1941), who later married the lawyer Dr. Ewald Aufrecht. Lange attended the Lindnersche Höhere Mädchenschule and passed the state nurse exams in 1914. She then worked for a year as a nurse at the surgical and medical university clinics. She graduated from the Realgymnasium in 1917 and began her medical studies, also in Strasbourg. Further stations were Giessen, Freiburg, and Frankfurt am Main. She spent the summer semester of 1918 in Munich, where she attended lectures in history of art.1

After having passed her state exams in Frankfurt (1923), Lange worked at the medical clicnic headed by Gustav von Bergmann (1878-1955) as part of her practical year for nine months. It was here that she completed her dissertation on the influence of sodium bicarbonate on gastric secretion under the supervision of Gerhardt Katsch (1887-1961), for which she was awarded her doctorate on 20 June 1924.2 She spent three more months of her practical year at the Institute of Hygiene. She then took up a post as assistant physician in internal medicine with von Bergmann, which she held until 1 June 1925. Von Bergmann described her as "a particularly gifted and capable doctor, both in terms of her qualities of character and her skills at the bedside, and finally also in terms of her scientific attitude."3

On 4 August 1925, Lange married Max Benjamin Strauss (1875-1929), a businessman from Heilbronn, whose first wife Hedwig Roedelheimer had died in 1922.4 The couple lived in Frankfurt am Main at Beethovenstrasse 10.5


Emigration to the USA and Transition to Psychiatry

As a Jew, Strauss also suffered increasingly from the anti-Semitic measures of the National Socialist regime. If one trusts the Reich Medical Calendar, Hanna Strauss continued to work as a doctor until at least 1937.6 Her entire apartment furnishings, including several valuable paintings, were confiscated by the National Socialists.7 Strauss was also ordered to pay the Nazi regime roughly one-tenth of her assets from the Max Strauss Trust, established in Switzerland in 1929 after her husband's death. At the end of 1938, Hanna Strauss decided to emigrate to the USA. The Max Strauss Trust provided her with financial support for this endeavor. Her three stepsons William, Richard and Karl-Hans had already emigrated with their families to New York and Buenos Aires respectively. Hanna Strauss reached New York aboard the President Harding on March 13, 1939.8

After receiving her license to practice medicine, Strauss first worked at Rockland State Hospital. She transferred to Creedmoor State Hospital in Queens in 1942 and began a residency in psychiatry, which she successfully completed in 1946. She was also a member of staff at the New York State Mental Institutions and volunteered with a number of organizations, including the Jewish Psychopatic Patients' Relief Society, of which she became an honorary member in 1946.9

The widowed physician met Henry Frederick Pindar (1885-1964) from Königsberg in the USA. The two were married in New York on November 26, 1957. Pindar was a respected lawyer and criminal defense attorney who maintained contacts with German Chancellor Konrad Adenauer (1876-1967) and German President Heinrich Lübke (1894-1972). He had to flee Germany in 1933 because of his Jewish origins and for political reasons and also emigrated to the USA via Zurich. His brother was the conductor Carl Alwin (1891-1945).10

Hanna Pindar became a U.S. citizen on July 27, 1944. Twenty years later (1964), the same year her husband passed away, the physician retired from Creedmore State Hospital. She intensified her travels, attending numerous international medical and psychotherapy congresses in France, Japan, Israel, and other countries. She continued her work as a psychiatrist in a small private practice at 315 East 72nd Street, New York, until the ripe old age of 92.


Leo Baeck Institute Archives (LBI) New York, AR 10673, MF 629, Hanna Lange Collection, 1896–1998, 8 Folders: (accessed 6.5.2022); Hanna Lange, Über den Einfluss des Natrium-Bikarbonats auf die Magensekretion, Diss. med. Frankfurt am Main 1924, Lebenslauf. – A very similar version of this biography can also be found in: Vina Zielonka/Ralf Forsbach/Hans-Georg Hofer/Ulrich R. Fölsch, Gegen das Vergessen: Jüdische Ärztinnen der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Innere Medizin im Porträt, in: Deutsche Medizinische Wochenschrift 147 (2022), pp. 1596–1604, p. 1600 ff.Hanna Lange, Über den Einfluss des Natrium-Bikarbonats auf die Magensekretion, Diss. med. Frankfurt am Main 1924.LBI New York, Folder 6, Zeugnis durch Gustav von Bergmann vom 25. Juli 1927.Hedwig and Max Strauss had three sons, one of who was William („Willy“) Strauss. We would like to thank his son Julian Strauss and his wife Betsy for their valuable biographical information and the provision of photographs.Amtliches Fernsprechbuch Frankfurt am Main 1935 (phone book), p. 180.Reichs-Medizinal-Kalender 58 (1937), p. 362.Bundesarchiv, BArch B 323/379, Note: Dr. Hanna Lange-Pindar, Sammlung Max Strauss, Frankfurt/M., and Siegfried Lange, Karlsruhe; German Lost Art Foundation, Lost Art-Datenbank, (accessed 6.5.2022).National Archives at Washington, D.C, Records of the Immigration and Naturalization Service, Passenger and Crew Lists of Vessels Arriving at New York, New York, 1897–1957, Microfilm Publication T715, 8892 rolls, role 14, p. 82.LBI New York, Folders 6 and 7.LBI New York, Folders 3 and 8.

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