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Character reference for Heinz Lippmann

Date: 8 September 1946
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Gift from Heinz Lippmann
Object Name: Reference
Object No: ANMS0222[001]

User Terms

    A handwriiten character reference for Heinz Henry Lippmann, 8 September 1946.
    "Mr Lippmann has been residing here for the last three years. He is a nice refined young man and very honourable in every way. Yours faithfully E.Gallin".
    Heinz Lippman lived at Rochester Lodge, 79 Flinders Lane, Melbourne which had become the centre of the Melbourne Jewish commiunity and the fashion insudtry or 'rag trade' in the years after WWII.
    HistoryAfter his release from the internment camp Heinz 'Henry' Lippmann joined the Australian Military Force as part of the 8th Employment Company which also numbered many other DUNERA Boy's.
    After the war ended, Lippmann found employment with John Lewinnek who worked in the fashion industry. An account of their meeting was recalled by Mr Lewinnek’s niece:

    "Henry and his young friends enjoyed their comparative freedom. They were proud to be seen in Australian army gear and were filled with a spirit of adventure as they took their leave from the barracks in Albury to visit Sydney's famous Kings Cross. It was here that Henry and his friend noticed a couple who looked like German Jews and spontaneously greeted them by saying "Good Yomtov". The couple responded and finding out that these young men were from Berlin recommended them to the Kanimbla Restaurant run by Mr Rosenstein and serving European style food. They were also told to introduce themselves to Mr John Lewinnek who ate there regularly as he would surely like to say hello to them.

    They went to the Kanimbla as suggested and they met Mr Rosenstein and John Lewinnek who chatted with them. When they finished their meal and were ready to pay Mr Rosenstein told them that John, who had left already, had paid for them. Henry was astonished. This complete stranger had shown them hospitality and welcomed them to his city. It had a huge emotional impact on Henry, it was as though he had found an uncle.

    Henry sent John a "thank you" note and then New Year's greetings. After the war John offered Henry a job in his company. Henry was delighted and keen to please, so when John asked him to come with him to spend an evening helping Jewish Welfare to prepare food parcels he could not refuse. Henry learned from John's example that he, too, had a responsibility to help others and share his good fortune in being an Australian. "
    (Geraldine Jones, Letters from Jewish Australia - No.39, 6th September, 1996).

    The meeting of Henry and John had a profound effect of Henry Lippmann's life. John and Peggy Lewinnek sponsored Lippmann to remain in Australia and they worked together for the next 15 years. Lippmann met his wife Julie, also in the clothing business, whilst travelling in Sydney and together in 1962 they began their own business, 'Florida Fashion'.

    For a large part of the twentieth century, the garment trade was an important industry in the southern Australian state of Victoria. Since clothing was a big part of the country’s manufacturing, the Jews of the garment trade, initially migrants or refugees post WWII, made a large contribution to Australia’s economy. This multi-faceted industry, located in Flinders Lane, Melbourne and expanding during the interwar years, had its own economic and social history, gorgeous products, and vibrant life and camaraderie at its heart.
    The number of clothing firms in the Lane reached 610 in 1939, and this level of activity was maintained until the early 1960s. But in the 60s and 70s these businesses began to leave, or they closed. With changing requirements for space and labour, rising rents and traffic congestion, many relocated to the suburbs.

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