Nathan Taylor born Siegfried Teichler in Erfurt, Germany in 1930, was frequently confused about his life in Germany after Hitler came to power.
He lived in a very assimilated family and was unaware that his Jewishness set him apart. As a second-grade student, Nathan was disappointed because his teacher would not give him a Hitler Youth uniform and allow him to march with the rest of his classmates.
Later, when the family moved to Berlin, Nathan felt isolated as a newcomer. He lived with his grandparents and attended a Jewish school. The family protected him, but he was conflicted about expressing his Jewish identity openly, even when encouraged to do so by his teachers.
Shortly before Kristallnacht, his father, who had a Polish passport, was deported to Poland.. Nathan and his mother joined him in Krakow, Poland, the following May.
Eventually the family bribed the border guards and left Poland to go to Italy. They had hoped to sail to the United States from Italy, but could not get visas. Instead, they took a train to Istanbul, Turkey. From there they hoped to get to Shanghai via Syria and Iraq. They could not board the train, so they hired Kurdish natives to take them to Iraq where they remained stranded.
After trying unsuccessfully to enter Palestine through Haifa, they returned to Iraq and made their way to Bombay, India, where they remained until the end of the war.
Biography written by: Barbara Appelbaum