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Josephine Datz - Immigrant Stories

Josephine (Jo) Datz was born into a Jewish family in Johannesburg, South Africa, and grew up during the nation's harsh Apartheid period. She discusses the nature of that system, and South African history and culture extensively. In 1989 she married Rabbi Michael Datz, who was working in South Africa on a sabbatical at the time. Following their marriage, they lived in Curacao for a short period, then moved to the United States. Rabi Datz accepted a call to Temple B'rith Sholom, a Reformed congregation in Springfield, Illinois. Datz concludes with her thoughts about becoming an American, and about the current situation in Israel.

Interview Links

Feature Excerpt

Authoritarian Society

Abstract

Interview Session 01 (Audio)

Family background & growing up in S. Africa

Interview Session 02 (Audio)

Marriage & immigration to America

Transcript


Photos

Caption

Sylvia Gon (nee Barnett), Josephine’s mother, on her wedding day on November 17, 1957. The wedding was in Johannesburg, South Africa.

Where:

Johannesburg, South Africa

When:

November 17, 1957

Ownership:

Narrator’s photo

Caption

Fajwusz (Philip) Gon, Josephine’s father, circa 1960. He lived in Johannesburg, South Africa at the time.

Where:

Johannesburg, South Africa

When:

Circa 1960

Ownership:

Narrator’s photo

Caption

Sara Gon, age six, and Josephine Gon, age three, in the backyard of their home in Johannesburg, South Africa, circa 1966.

Where:

Johannesburg, South Africa

When:

Circa 1966.

Ownership:

Narrator’s photo

Caption

Josephine Gon, age three, in the backyard of her family’s home in Johannesburg, South Africa in 1966.

Where:

Johannesburg, South Africa

When:

1966

Ownership:

Narrator’s photo

Caption

Michael Datz’ and Josephine Gon’s wedding portrait. The couple was married in a traditional Jewish ceremony on May 22 1989, in Johannesburg, South Africa.

Where:

Johannesburg, South Africa

When:

May 22 1989

Ownership:

Narrator’s photo

Caption

Michael Datz, circa 1992.

Where:

Unknown

When:

Circa 1992

Ownership:

Narrator’s photo

Caption

Fajwusz (Philip) Gon, Josephine’s father, and Rosemary Gon (Mulholland), Josephine’s stepmother, in Springfield, Illinois, June 6th 1998.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

June 6th 1998

Ownership:

Narrator’s photo

Caption

Josephine and Michael Datz attend an event in Springfield, Illinois in 2001.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

2001

Ownership:

Narrator’s photo

Caption

Michael, Geoffrey, and Nathan Datz at the Datz family home in Springfield on March 29th 2002.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

March 29th 2002

Ownership:

Narrator’s photo

Caption

From left to right: Josephine Gon, mother Sylvia Gon, and Josephine’s sister Sara Weiss (nee Gon), in Johannesburg in 2003.

Where:

Johannesburg, South Africa

When:

2003

Ownership:

Narrator’s photo



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