Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Liebmans were on famous refugee ship rescued by Mrs. Roosevelt

French blogger Jean-Jacques Richard checked in overnight with important new information that I had overlooked. I wrote recently about the Liebman family's passage to American in August 1940 aboard the S.S. Quanza. What I didn't put together was that they didn't get off the ship in New York.

In fact, over the next three weeks the Quanza would sail into history as many of its passengers were refused entry into Mexico at a planned stop in Vera Cruz, and then left to wait offshore at Norfolk, Va., while the U.S. State Department refused them entry. After four days, First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt intervened and the passengers were able to enter the U.S.

We don't know yet if the four Liebmans were able to disembark in Mexico, as some of the passengers did, or if they were among the 86 that went to Norfolk. These close ups of immigration authority notations on the New York passenger list shows that they were definitely on board when the Quanza left New York for Mexico on August 23.

Notations on Quanza passenger list read "No Visa." "shore leave denied," and "Aug 23/40 All above (25 aliens) on board at sailing.."
I will post more information about the history of the Quanza soon. But I wanted to get this important information up without delay. Merci once more, JJR!

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