Artifact of the month for January

Obituary for Leonard Levin (1905 -1943)

Leonard Levin was born in Oslo on the 31st of May 1905 as the youngest of nine children to Leib Levin (b. 1852 in Upin, present Lithuania) and Henriette Kranzdorff (b. 1867 in what was then Prussia). Leib Levin came to Norway in 1878, and acquired citizenship in 1889. The following year he became a merchant in Christiania. The family eventually moved to Arendal and later to Rjukan, where Leib for many years ran a prosperous business. In the constitutional anniversary year of 1914, Leib Levin was given the honorable task of holding the official speech on the 17th of May.  His speech included the following statement: Being Jews in religion prevents us not from being Norwegian in nation. Leib Levin died in Oslo in 1934, at the age of 82. His wife Henriette died in Trondheim in 1947.

Leonard Levin took his medical degree in 1934 and established himself as a practicing physician in Oslo. After the German invasion in April 1940, he joined the Resistance and was present throughout the entire campaign in Southern Norway. He was arrested by the Norwegian state police in April 1942 and sent to Grini prison camp, whence he, on the 26th of November, was deported with MS Monterosa to Germany via Denmark to Auschwitz, where he perished a month later. His brother Sigurd (b. 1898) and sister Lea (b. 1896) along with her husband and their two children were also deported and killed.

The obituary was written in “The Journal of the Norwegian Medical Association,” no. 11 (7) 1945, and is a gift to the museum from Leonard Levin’s nephew, who bears the same name as his late uncle.