Joel Darmstadter escaped the Holocaust through the Kindertransport program.
Explore these photos of Joel and his family before, during, and after World War II. All photos are courtesy of Joel Darmstadter unless otherwise noted.
On the night of November 9 to 10, 1938, Nazis attacked Jewish citizens throughout Germany in a wave of organized anti-Jewish violence. The next morning, the Nazis arrested Joel’s father, Karl Darmstädter, and sent him to the Dachau concentration camp.
Following the pogroms in November 1938, the U.K. relaxed some of its restrictions for Jewish refugees trying to escape Nazi-occupied areas of Europe. Joel and his older brother, Heinz (Henry), were among the 10,000 Jewish children who escaped through the Kindertransport (or “Children’s Transport.”) A Jewish family in Manchester, England, adopted Joel and his brother.
Escaping to the U.S.
In 1939, the Nazis released Joel’s father from Dachau and allowed Joel’s parents to move to the Netherlands. In 1940, Joel and his brother left England to join their parents. The family escaped to the U.S. just a few weeks before the Nazis invaded the Netherlands in May 1940.
Approximately 75 percent of the Jews living in the Netherlands at that time perished during the Holocaust.
Joel earned economics degrees from George Washington University (AB, 1950) and the New School (MA, 1952). His four decades with Resources for the Future, an independent nonprofit Washington research institution, included a concurrent stint as adjunct faculty at Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies. His work and multiple publications centered on natural resources, environment, and climate change.
Joel’s grandson, Ari Neugeboren, was an indispensable contributor to the present project.