My mother, Rébecca Goethe, was une enfante de l'assistance, a “state’’ child brought to Paris as an enfant of 2 months and abandoned at the Hospice of St Vincent de Paul in 1902. She was brought to the Hospice of St Vincent de Paul by a young woman who spoke no French and a little German. Probably the language barrier contributed to the sparcity of information. At that time in Russia there were pogroms. Perhaps there was some tragedy and someone tried to save this child. However, someone cared enough to leave my mother with a name and that she was Jewish. Though my mother knew little of being Jewish in a French Catholic village her foster mother respected this word in her docier and she was not baptized until much later when she chose to be just before marrying my father.
I have always been intriqued by this mystery as was my mother. She longed all her life to know who her real parents were.
Has anyone heard of Jewish Goethes or the name Goeth in Russia?
After many years and after my mother's death in 1981, with a special exception from the French Government, I was able to get a copy of what little information was available. She was left with the name Rébecca Goethe, that she was Jewish and was born in Platz, Russia. She was raised in a tiny French village by foster parents and at age 19, in 1921, married by father, an American soldier stationed at the Base Hospital built in my mother's village near Nevers in Central France.
There is so little information to go on. The mystery is the name, Goethe. Were there any Jewish Goethes in Platz, Russia? I haven't been able to locate a Platz but there is a similar name which might have been in the Ukraine. She was an amazing woman, highly intelligent. During her lifetime she tried to get information but at that time it was forbidden even to see her doucier at the Bureau Des Enfants Assisté. It will probably remain a mystery but if anyone can give me any direction I would appreciate it.
My father was 1st generation Dutch from Friesland.
Thanks for your attention.
Lucy De Vries Duffy
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