Close cookie details

This site uses cookies. Learn more about cookies.

OverDrive would like to use cookies to store information on your computer to improve your user experience at our Website. One of the cookies we use is critical for certain aspects of the site to operate and has already been set. You may delete and block all cookies from this site, but this could affect certain features or services of the site. To find out more about the cookies we use and how to delete them, click here to see our Privacy Policy.

If you do not wish to continue, please click here to exit this site.

Hide notification

  Main Nav
50 Children
Cover of 50 Children
50 Children
One Ordinary American Couple's Extraordinary Rescue Mission into the Heart of Nazi Germany
Borrow Borrow

Based on the acclaimed HBO documentary, the astonishing true story of how one American couple transported fifty Jewish children from Nazi-occupied Austria to America in 1939—the single largest group of unaccompanied refugee children allowed into the United States—for readers of In the Garden of Beasts and A Train in Winter.

In early 1939, America's rigid immigration laws made it virtually impossible for European Jews to seek safe haven in the United States. As deep-seated anti-Semitism and isolationism gripped much of the country, neither President Roosevelt nor Congress rallied to their aid.

Yet one brave Jewish couple from Philadelphia refused to silently stand by. Risking their own safety, Gilbert Kraus, a successful lawyer, and his stylish wife, Eleanor, traveled to Nazi-controlled Vienna and Berlin to save fifty Jewish children. Steven Pressman brought the Kraus's rescue mission to life in his acclaimed HBO documentary, 50 Children. In this book, he expands upon the story related in the hour-long film, offering additional historical detail and context to offer a rich, full portrait of this ordinary couple and their extraordinary actions.

Drawing from Eleanor Kraus's unpublished memoir, rare historical documents, and interviews with more than a dozen of the surviving children, and illustrated with period photographs, archival materials, and memorabilia, 50 Children is a remarkable tale of personal courage and triumphant heroism that offers a fresh, unique insight into a critical period of history.

Based on the acclaimed HBO documentary, the astonishing true story of how one American couple transported fifty Jewish children from Nazi-occupied Austria to America in 1939—the single largest group of unaccompanied refugee children allowed into the United States—for readers of In the Garden of Beasts and A Train in Winter.

In early 1939, America's rigid immigration laws made it virtually impossible for European Jews to seek safe haven in the United States. As deep-seated anti-Semitism and isolationism gripped much of the country, neither President Roosevelt nor Congress rallied to their aid.

Yet one brave Jewish couple from Philadelphia refused to silently stand by. Risking their own safety, Gilbert Kraus, a successful lawyer, and his stylish wife, Eleanor, traveled to Nazi-controlled Vienna and Berlin to save fifty Jewish children. Steven Pressman brought the Kraus's rescue mission to life in his acclaimed HBO documentary, 50 Children. In this book, he expands upon the story related in the hour-long film, offering additional historical detail and context to offer a rich, full portrait of this ordinary couple and their extraordinary actions.

Drawing from Eleanor Kraus's unpublished memoir, rare historical documents, and interviews with more than a dozen of the surviving children, and illustrated with period photographs, archival materials, and memorabilia, 50 Children is a remarkable tale of personal courage and triumphant heroism that offers a fresh, unique insight into a critical period of history.

Available formats-
  • OverDrive Listen
  • OverDrive MP3 Audiobook
Subjects-
Languages:-
Copies-
  • Available:
    1
  • Library copies:
    1
Levels-
  • ATOS:
  • Lexile:
  • Interest Level:
  • Text Difficulty:

Recommended for you

About the Author-
  • Steven Pressman was a magazine and newspaper journalist for more than thirty years. He is the author of Outrageous Betrayal: The Dark Journey of Werner Erhard from est to Exile, and the writer, director, and producer of the HBO documentary film 50 Children: The Rescue Mission of Mr. and Mrs. Kraus.

Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    February 3, 2014
    In this stirring account of determination against overwhelming odds, journalist Pressman (Outrageous Betrayal) expands on his eponymous HBO documentary wherein his wife’s grandparents, Gilbert and Eleanor Kraus, worked to rescue 50 Viennese Jewish children from occupied territory during the early years of WWII. Drawing from interviews, historical documents, and Eleanor’s private writings, Pressman reconstructs the chain of events, adding background and context. His flowing narrative breathes life into the America and Europe of 1938–1939, placing a spotlight on the impossible circumstances and contradictions of Nazi Germany’s anti-Jewish pogroms, as Jews were encouraged to leave yet hindered at every turn. He looks at the obstacles thrown up by American attitudes and policies: isolationism, rigid immigration laws and quotas, and rampant anti-Semitism made it unlikely that the Krauses’ plan would ever work: “During the years when it was possible for Jews to leave Germany for the United States, American public opinion, government insensitivity, lack of interest, and a depressing failure of human compassion all worked against them.” In contrast to his praise for the Krauses for spearheading their small but vital rescue effort, Pressman critiques American intransigence alongside more visible Nazi cruelties, and the whole makes for a story as troublingas it is inspirational. Illus. Agent: Elizabeth Kaplan.

  • Kirkus

    March 1, 2014
    The astonishing story of a Philadelphia couple's resolve to help bring Jewish children out of Nazi-occupied Austria. Journalist Pressman (Outrageous Betrayal: The Real Story of Werner Erhard from Est to Exile, 1993) is the grandson-in-law of Eleanor and Gilbert Kraus, whose bravery during a dark time is only now coming to light. The Philadelphia lawyer and his wife, both nonreligious Jews from well-to-do families, agreed to help engineer the transfer of Austrian Jewish children to America on behalf of a national Jewish fraternal organization, Brith Sholom, which was deeply concerned about the increasing prosecution of Jews in Germany and Austria. In 1939, the Jews were still being allowed out--that is, if they had the money and connections to emigrate; after "Aryanization," or the seizure of their wealth and goods, few had the means. By late 1938, the murderous intentions of Nazi warnings--"Jews! Abandon all hope. There is only one possibility for you: Emigrate--if someone will accept you"--were made abundantly clear, yet Jews were trapped. The Krauses were warned against venturing to Germany at this time: A prominent Quaker contingent had recently been rebuffed by the Nazis; the U.S. and other nations had tightened restrictions on immigration; and even various Jewish groups and charities tried to convince the couple of the folly and danger of the rescue plan. "One would think we were trying to do something illegal or wicked, even degrading," Eleanor remembered. After securing affidavits from 50 sponsors, completing the vast paperwork and achieving clearance from the State Department, Gil finally left in April 1939 and summoned Eleanor to come shortly after. Making their way through Nazi Germany to Vienna, the couple observed chilling details of the nation's militarization and oppression of the Jews. The details around selection of the children, leave-taking of their parents and the tearful travels are heart-rending, but eventually, they were safely shepherded to a summer camp in Collegeville, Pa. With a careful eye to detail and dialogue, Pressman vividly re-creates this epic rescue.

    COPYRIGHT(2014) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • Booklist

    May 15, 2014
    Rescues and escapes from Nazi persecution are augmented by this well-crafted account. Based on a family typescript inherited by Pressman's wife, it describes a project taken on by her grandparents in 1939 to bring Jewish children out of Germany and to the U.S. Proposed to Gil Kraus, a Philadelphia lawyer, by a Jewish fraternal organization in which he was active, the plan entailed Kraus satisfying both American and German regulations and officialdom and ultimately traveling to Germany to select and chaperone 50 children across the Atlantic. His wife, Eleanor, wrote up her experience of the journey. Pressman's extensive quotations of Eleanor's account capture the immediacy of events, while his research into State Department communications with the Krauses contextualizes the principal challenge they faced, finding a legal loophole in the then-restrictive immigration laws. On the other side of the transaction, Pressman details Gil Kraus' activities in Berlin and Vienna to collect his charges, whose own memories of their rescue and relocation to America Pressman also relays. Multimedia marketing, including an HBO documentary, will heighten the prominence of this deserving work.(Reprinted with permission of Booklist, copyright 2014, American Library Association.)

Title Information+
  • Publisher
    HarperAudio
  • OverDrive Listen
    Release date:
  • OverDrive MP3 Audiobook
    Release date:
Digital Rights Information+
  • OverDrive MP3 Audiobook
    Burn to CD: 
    Permitted
    Transfer to device: 
    Permitted
    Transfer to Apple® device: 
    Permitted
    Public performance: 
    Not permitted
    File-sharing: 
    Not permitted
    Peer-to-peer usage: 
    Not permitted
    All copies of this title, including those transferred to portable devices and other media, must be deleted/destroyed at the end of the lending period.

Status bar:

You've reached your checkout limit.

Visit your Checkouts page to manage your titles.

Close

You already have this title checked out.

Want to go to your Checkouts?

Close

Recommendation Limit Reached.

You've reached the maximum number of titles you can recommend at this time. You can recommend up to 99 titles every 1 day(s).

Close

Sign in to recommend this title.

Recommend your library consider adding this title to the Digital Collection.

Close

Enhanced Details

Close
Close

Limited availability

Availability can change throughout the month based on the library's budget.

is available for days.

Once playback starts, you have hours to view the title.

Close

Permissions

Close

The OverDrive Read format of this eBook has professional narration that plays while you read in your browser. Learn more here.

Close

Holds

Total holds:


Close

Restricted

Some format options have been disabled. You may see additional download options outside of this network.

Close

MP3 audiobooks are only supported on macOS 10.6 (Snow Leopard) through 10.14 (Mojave). Learn more about MP3 audiobook support on Macs.

Close

Please update to the latest version of the OverDrive app to stream videos.

Close

You've reached your library's checkout limit for digital titles.

To make room for more checkouts, you may be able to return titles from your Checkouts page.

Close

Excessive Checkout Limit Reached.

There have been too many titles checked out and returned by your account within a short period of time.

Try again in several days. If you are still not able to check out titles after 7 days, please contact Support.

Close

You have already checked out this title. To access it, return to your Checkouts page.

Close

This title is not available for your card type. If you think this is an error contact support.

Close

An unexpected error has occurred.

If this problem persists, please contact support.

Close

Close

NOTE: Barnes and Noble® may change this list of devices at any time.

Close
Buy it now
and help our library WIN!
50 Children
50 Children
One Ordinary American Couple's Extraordinary Rescue Mission into the Heart of Nazi Germany
Steven Pressman
Choose a retail partner below to buy this title for yourself.
A portion of this purchase goes to support your library.
Close
Close

There are no copies of this issue left to borrow. Please try to borrow this title again when a new issue is released.

Close
Barnes & Noble Sign In |   Sign In

You will be prompted to sign into your library account on the next page.

If this is your first time selecting “Send to NOOK,” you will then be taken to a Barnes & Noble page to sign into (or create) your NOOK account. You should only have to sign into your NOOK account once to link it to your library account. After this one-time step, periodicals will be automatically sent to your NOOK account when you select "Send to NOOK."

The first time you select “Send to NOOK,” you will be taken to a Barnes & Noble page to sign into (or create) your NOOK account. You should only have to sign into your NOOK account once to link it to your library account. After this one-time step, periodicals will be automatically sent to your NOOK account when you select "Send to NOOK."

You can read periodicals on any NOOK tablet or in the free NOOK reading app for iOS, Android or Windows 8.

Accept to ContinueCancel