Torkel S Wächter

Torkel S Wächter in front of the ‘denk.mal Hannoverscher Bahnhof’ memorial site, 2023
Torkel S Wächter at the ‘Hannoverscher Bahnhof Memorial’, 2023 (Photo: Miguel Ferraz Araújo)
‘The best thing about Hannoverscher Bahnhof is the children’s daycare centre right next door. There, life goes on as the next generation grows up. Hannoverscher Bahnhof is of course an important remembrance site, but for my family and me, there are so many other places in Hamburg that bear witness to the lives of our ancestors and all the happiness they experienced here. We love this city and we are back.’

Torkel S Wächter is the grandson of Minna and Gustav Wächter, who worked as a treasury official in Hamburg. They were deported from Hannoverscher Bahnhof railway station to Riga on 6 December 1941 and murdered there. Torkel’s father, Walter Wächter, was also persecuted as a Jew and imprisoned at Fuhlsbüttel concentration camp for his activities in the anti-fascist resistance. Following his release, Walter Wächter managed to escape to Sweden in 1938, where Torkel S Wächter and his family still live.

Torkel S Wächter researched his family history and wrote several books on the subject. What’s important to him is that the persecution and deportation of his relatives should not be the only thing remembered about his family in Hamburg. He and his family regularly visit various places in Hamburg that were of significance for his ancestors.

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Gustav, Minna and Walter Wächter together in the end of the 1920s
Gustav, Minna and Walter Wächter, End of the 1920s