Empower - The Campaign for Northeastern University


Survivor Talk

Gerald Holton, kindertransport survivor

"How One Teenager and Thousands of Other Boys and Girls Escaped from the Nazis via the Kindertransport"


In March, 1938, Austria handed itself over enthusiastically to Hitler and his henchmen. Gerald Holton, a boy aged 15, living in Vienna, evaded the murderous Nazis. That was made possible by the British Quakers, who had set up an escape route for 10,000 largely Jewish youngsters, by using a special set of trains (labeled Kindertransport)  to England--a bright star in that dark period. Once in England, young Holton tried frantically to bring his endangered parents out of Austria. He succeeded by finding a loophole in the essential embargo against older persons hoping to come to England. His parents arrived shortly before WWII broke out. During the war all refugees in England who had come with German/Austrian passports were thought to include spies. So in June 1940 they were rounded up and put into detention camps.  By great good luck, the Holton family was just then on its way to the United States. On arriving in the USA, young Holton, like many such refugees, was given the chance to get a college education. This ultimately led him to become a physics professor at Harvard University.

Wednesday, April 3, 2019 at 12:00pm to 1:30pm


Event Type



CSSH, College of Social Sciences and Humanities, Jewish Studies Program, Master Calendar, Humanities Center, Office of the Provost



Sponsoring Organization

Jewish Studies Program, Holocaust and Genocide Awareness Committee, Humanities Center, Office of the Provost

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