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1941 Jews allowed to do and less

City centre

Reguliersbreestraat 26-34
Reguliersbreestraat 26-34
Reguliersbreestraat 26-34
Reguliersbreestraat 26-34 [+] Enlarge map [-] Reduce map
© Spaarnestad

Tuschinski on fire

On 18 July 1941 the Amsterdam fire brigade put out a fire at the Tuschinski Theater. It has been in German hands for 6 months and given a non-Jewish name, Tivoli. The fire completely destroys  two viewing rooms.

A year earlier, on Queen Wilhelmina’s birthday on 31 August 1940, early in the morning a Dutch and an English flag are hung outside Tuschinski. The personnel are arrested by the Nazis. Abraham Tuschinski manages to get his employees released but the cinema is only allowed to reopen unless it is run by the German company Tobis.


On 15 November 1940 Tuschinski Theater reopens as Tivoli. In popular parlance it stands for ‘Tuschinski Is Verkocht Of Liever Ingepikt’, meaning ‘Tuschinski has been sold or rather stolen’.

Beautiful theater

The Tuschinski Theater is one of the most beautiful theaters in Amsterdam. Abraham Tuschinski, a cinema operator from Rotterdam has it built in 1921. Tuschinski, a Polish Jewish immigrant, was on his way to the United States but stayed in Rotterdam. He starts a couple of cinemas there but these are all destroyed during the bombing of Rotterdam on 14 May 1940.

The whole family arrested

When it is discovered that Abraham Tuschinski often visits his non-Jewish neighbour and uses his phone, he and his family are arrested. Jews are no longer allowed to use a telephone nor to visit non-Jews. Those who break these laws risk the whole family being arrested. Tuschinski and his wife are deported to Auschwitz via Westerbork. They are gassed there on 17 September 1942.

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1938 Many Jewish refugees after Kristallnacht

Many Jewish refugees flee to the Netherlands after Kristallnacht. Princess Juliana also feels connected to the Jewish community. But while more attention is drawn to the admittance of more Jews, NSB members threaten more intervention.

1940 Amsterdam occupied

Nothing changes too much for the Frank family in the beginning. Opekta moves to the Prinsengracht. During air raids bombs cause death and injury in Amsterdam.

1940  Amsterdam occupied

1941 Jews allowed to do and less

It starts with a cinema ban but rapidly Jews are banned from virtually all public places. Jewish children must attend separate schools. This also applies to Anne and Margot Frank.

1941  Jews allowed to do and less

1942 It becomes more dangerous for Jews

On her thirteenth birthday Anne Frank receives a diary. A few days later she writes about the situation in Amsterdam. The introduction of the Jewish star and the raids. In July the Frank family goes into hiding.

1942  It becomes more dangerous for Jews

1943 Deportations and attacks

While the Frank family is in hiding thousands of Jews are deported from Amsterdam. The resistance tries to hinder the deportations by attacks including one on the Public Registry. It doesn’t stop them.

1943  Deportations and attacks

1944 Discovered and arrested

On 4 August the people in hiding in the secret annex are discovered and arrested. From Westerbork they are taken to Auschwitz. When the Allies land in the south of the Netherlands there is hope that the country will be liberated. German soldiers and NSB members flee the country after Dolle Dinsdag (‘Mad Tuesday’).

1944  Discovered and arrested

1945 Joy and sadness

A celebration at the Dam on 7 May is ruined when people are killed after German soldiers shoot at the crowd. On 8 May Amsterdam is officially liberated. Otto Frank returns. He knows that Edith is dead. He only hears later that his two daughters have not survived.

1945  Joy and sadness

1946 Slowly the threads are picked up again

On 3 May 1946 the first official commemoration for those who died during the war is held. Anne Frank’s diary is published on 25 June 1947. Life in Amsterdam slowly gets back to normal. Of the 70,000 Jews who lived in the city in 1940 only 10,000 have survived the war.

1950 Lasting memory

Even five years after the liberation the reverberations from the war are still clearly noticeable. The Jewish community thanks Amsterdam for the help given to Jews with a monument.

1950  Lasting memory
  • 1950
  • To those who protected the Dutch Jews during the years of the occupation. Protected by your love. Encouraged by your resistance. Mourning with you.

    Part of the citation on the monument ‘Jewish Gratitude’
  • picture:Once a year, two minutes silence

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