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Gerda WeissmannKlein

Gerda Weissmann Klein used her experiences in the Holocaust to write children’s books that helped children grapple with difficult subjects. Klein lost her family in the Holocaust and spent her teenage years in various concentration camps, culminating in a three-month death march to Czechoslovakia. She was rescued by American intelligence officer Kurt Klein, whom she married in 1946, and in 2000 she published The Hours After, a collection of their love letters. In 1957, Klein wrote All But My Life, an autobiography that has remained in print for decades. She followed this with various books for children and adults, including The Blue Rose, a 1974 story of an autistic child, and Promise of a New Spring, her 1981 book that uses a forest fire as a metaphor to explain the Holocaust to young children. From 1978–1996 she wrote a column for the Buffalo Sunday News called “Stories for Young Readers.” Her own story was the subject of an Oscar-winning documentary, One Survivor Remembers, in 1996. In 2011, she was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by Barack Obama.


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Gerda Klein.
Date of Birth


Writer, Journalist

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Gerda Weissmann Klein." (Viewed on November 24, 2020) <https://jwa.org/people/klein-gerda>.


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