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Helen and Sol Krawitz Holocaust Memorial Education Center

Shimon and Sara Birnbaum Jewish Community Center

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Survivor Profile










SEPTEMBER 13, 1916








    “Anti-Semitism still lives,”  Inge believes. “I’m not worried about myself now. I’m old. But I worry about my children.”

    Qtd. Morristown Daily Record (September 2, 1983)


    Inge (Ingeborg Ilse) Nierenberg was born in a small German town on September 13, 1916, to Jakob and Ella Guttenberg—a Viennese father and a German mother. She had two older sisters: Edith born in 1903 and Marta in 1905. Inge, born 11 years later was the youngest. She spent most of her growing up years in Wattenscheid and Grussen, Germany. In 1929 Inge’s father died. With the rise of Hitler and Nazism in Germany, Inge had the desire and foresight to leave Germany. According to Mark Nierenberg, his mother wanted to go to Palestine. She began studying Hebrew with a teacher, Ari Levinson. They decided to marry to facilitated a visa together. They escaped together to Palestine, a British protectorate, on March 12, 1938. Although Mark does not know the details of their entry into Palestine, he does know that his mother volunteered in an all-women’s platoon in the British Army. There are scrapbook photographs of Inge in uniform (Refer to Related Media Photo). 


    Unfortunately, Inge could not persuade her mother, two sisters and nephew to leave Germany at that time. Her mother said she was too old to leave Germany. Her brother-in-law said he had fought for the Germans in WWI, and that “they can’t do this to me.”  Her sister explained in a letter that she, her husband and son were going to what would turn out to be a concentration camp. As a consequence, Inge became the sole survivor of her immediate family and eventually, her extended family as well (Refer to Related Media for Dani Nierenberg’s Haggadah and Family Tree and “Woman Recalls Flight from Hitler’s Grasp,” Morristown Daily Record, Sept. 2, 1983).


    Inge drove a supply truck for the British Army as part of the Auxiliary Territorial Services. Inge remarks in her Daily Record interview, “We asked to be sent to the front, but they wouldn’t let us. But we hurt the Germans,” she said. According to Mark Nierenberg, she met Jay Nierenberg in a train station when they were both on a short leave. They travelled together and fell in love. They married quickly and honeymooned in Cairo, Egypt (Refer to Related Media, honeymoon photo) 


    Inge and Jay Nierenberg, an American citizen, returned to the United States in 1945, settling first in Levittown, Long Island and then in 1952 moving to Morristown, New Jersey. Once there, Inge made Robert Morris Park her home for the remainder of her life. Robert Morris Park was a small cluster of modern Frank Lloyd Wright style homes attracting a diverse community of artists, war veterans, those seeking the American dream. Inge and Jay had three children: Judi, Ron and Mark who grew up in Robert Morris Park. Inge and Jay were divorced in 1962. Inge never remarried. In her post war years, Inge was a member of Temple B’nai Or of Morris Township and a volunteer for the visiting Homemaker Service of Morris County.

    Editor’s Note:

    (Refer to Survivor Registry for Yoram Meyer)

  • SURVIVOR INTERVIEW With Son, Mark Nierenberg

    Date: June-July, 2023

    Location:  Phone Interviews and SSBJCC Holocaust Memorial and Education Center

    Interviewer Nancy Gorrell


    Q: Did your mother ever talk about her childhood or growing up? 

    A: Not really. She did in the article. Not with me. I didn’t ask. I guess I just knew. I ask myself now. Why didn’t I ask. I just never did. I’m frustrated with myself for not asking. My mother was kind of blunt. It’s weird. It is what it is. Now I know more thanks to my sister-in-law, Dani, for doing her research. She did it approximately 10 years ago. 


    Q: Do you know how she managed to escape Germany before the war?

    A: She wanted to go to Palestine and she was taking Hebrew lessons with a man named Ari Levinson. They decided to marry so they could escape on one visa. Afterwards, they went their separate ways. They emigrated to Palestine on March 12, 1938. The same night that the Nazis invaded Austria. 


    Q: What happened when they got to Palestine? It was a British protectorate with quotas. 

    A: I don’t know exactly. My mother volunteered in an all-women’s platoon in the British army.


    Q: Did she ever talk about it to you? No, not to me. I just when through scrapbooks and saw pictures and saw WWII photos of my mother and father. Everything I know I learned from my father and older siblings. I still have the scrapbook in my basement. We don’t know who everyone is.

    Q: You seem to cherish that scrapbook book.

    A: Yes, it is fascinating.


    Q: When did she meet your father? Or, how did she meet your father? 

    A: They met in a train station in Egypt during the war when they were both on a short leave. They met and travelled together. It happened very fast. They fell in love and married quickly. There is a photo of them and on the back of the photo it says, “honeymoon in Cairo.” They were married at the end of the war in 1944.  My father  received news by telegram that his father had died. He got leave and went back to America and then he must have returned to get my mother. They were both stationed in North Africa during the war. My father, an American citizen, drove an ambulance as a volunteer medic with the American Field Service. There are photos of him doing that. My mother drove a supply truck. My father was denied enlistment because he wore glasses.  


    Q: Do you know how your parent’s came to America ? When exactly or how?

    A: I only know that my mother and father moved to Levittown, Long Island. They lived in Levittown for about five years and then moved to Robert Morris Park either in 1951 or 1952. Robert Morris Park had modern, ranch style homes in Frank Lloyd Wright style. It was a small development  in Morristown, New Jersey. My mother lived there for the remainder of her life. I grew up there and so did my sister, Judi  and my brother, Ron. My parents divorced in 1962 to the best of my memory. My mother never remarried.

  • Sources and Credits:


    Brief Biography of Inge Nierenberg by Nancy Gorrell, 2023; SSBJCC Education Center Interview with Mark Nierenberg, son,  June-July, 2023;

     Art Daniels, staff writer, “Woman Recalls Flight from Hitler’s Grasp,” Morristown  Daily Record, Sept. 2, 1983; 

    Dani Nierenberg, Haggadah and Family Tree, circa 2013.

    SSBJCC Holocaust Memorial and Education Center gratefully acknowledge historic, digital and family photographs of Inge Nierenberg donated to the Center by Mark Nierenberg as well as digital copies of historic documents including Dani Nierenberg’s Haggadah and Family Tree and the Morristown Daily Record news article ” Woman Recalls Flight from Hitler’s Grasp,”  Sept. 2, 1983.