On Monday the 30th May 2022, the first stolperstein in Britain was laid outside No. 3 Golden Square in London. The stolpersteine, roughly translating to ‘stumble stones’, are memorial installations placed outside the last known homes or working places of victims of the Holocaust. Artist Gunter Demnig began the project 25 years ago and since then, over 100,000 stones have been placed across 26 countries.
The stolperstein laid this Monday is in memory of Dutch art conservator Ada van Dantzig, who lived in the studio at 3 Golden Square, Soho, while studying her craft in London. In 1939, she travelled back to the Netherlands in an attempt to aid her family’s escape from the Nazis but was tragically unsuccessful. Ada was deported to Auschwitz, where she was killed on the 14th February 1943.
Our client Jackie Kohnstamm attended the ceremony for the laying of the memorial plaque on Monday with Rowan and Eleanor from TSA and Nicki Kennedy from our translation rights co-agency, ILA. Jackie’s journey into her own family’s personal history during WWII began with the discovery of her grandparents stolpersteine, which she writes about in her forthcoming book The Memory Keeper (Canongate, 2023). Jackie also attended the post-ceremony panel discussion at the Wiener Library, where Gunter Demnig spoke about his work with the stolpersteine, and other academics had discussions along themes of memorialisation, inherited trauma and memory. Particular thanks must be given to Mowenna Blewett, who researched Ada’s history and wrote a beautiful account that was read out at the ceremony.