After Leaving School, 1945-1947

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Ruth's last day of school was on April 30, 1945, soon after her 16th birthday. She soon got a job in an office, where she worked for the next two years.

Just before Ruth finished school in 1945, untis from the American army entered Eisleben and took control of the town.  Although Ruth was an American citizen, she had nothing in common with these soldiers and knew no English, so she had little contact with them.  The Americans remained in Eisleben until the end of June 1945 when they ceded control of the area to the Russians.  Russian troops arrived on July 2 and soon made the eastern part of Germany into a separate country called East Germany.  For the next two years, Ruth had to report to Russian officials about any trips she took or meetings she had with others.  As an American citizen, they kept close tabs on her and even followed her when she traveled.

After Bertha and Andreas divorced, Bertha took steps to prevent Ruth from hearing directly from her father.  Then the war made it even more difficult to communicate between the two countries.  As conditions under the Soviet regime in East Germany worsened during the postwar years, Ruth finally made contact with her father and he invited her to join him in America.  Bertha was strongly opposed to this idea and argued endlessly against it.

Ruth's uncle Max Weinmann, who was a prominent businessman in Detroit, Michigan (he owned an electircal business, two bakeries, and some apartments). took the lead in making arrangments for her to be admitted back into the United States.  He filled out paperwork and promised to sponsor her once she arrived, so that she would not become a burden on government resources.

Ruth Weinmann with friend Sonja   Ruth Weinmann with friend Sonja  Bertha Boettcher Weinmann Rohkohl
Ruth with her friend Sonja, ca. 1945; Bertha, ca. 1945

Ruth Weinmann  Ruth Weinmann with her friend Annaliese
Ruth, ca. 1945; Ruth with her friend Annaliese, ca. 1945

Ruth Weinmann      Ruth Weinmann
Ruth, April 1945; Ruth, 1946

Ruth Weinmann  Eva Tenzer  Ruth Weinmann
Ruth and her friend and neighbor Eva Tenzer, dressed up for Eva's birthday, March 10, 1946

Ruth Munsell
Ruth, April 1946

Ruth Weinmann  Ruth Weinmann
Ruth, June 26, 1946

Ruth Weinmann in the garden of her friend Sonja's home with Sonja (left) and Margit (center)  Ruth Weinmann in the garden of her friend Sonja's home with Sonja (left) and Margit (right)
Ruth with her friends Sonja and Margit, August 5, 1946

Ruth Weinmann  Ruth Weinmann  Ruth Weinmann

Ruth Weinmann  Ruth Weinmann
Ruth in various poses in the garden of her friend Sonja's home, August 5, 1946

  Ruth Weinmann   Bertha Boettcher Weinmann Rohkohl
Ruth and Bertha, 1947

Application for an immigration visa  Max Weinmann's supporting letter
Two documents from Max Weinmann's application for an immigration visa for Ruth

Chapters

Ruth Weinmann Munsell oral history interview
concerning her life in Germany, 1930-1947