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January 29 , 2010

The Virginia Plan

William B. Thalhimer and a Rescue from Nazi Germany


Among the Jews attempting to flee Nazi Germany before World War II were the students of Gross Breesen Institute, young men and women who trained in agricultural sciences in hopes of securing visas and a refuge. Across the Atlantic, the Jewish community of Richmond, Virginia, looked to the Third Reich with growing unease, and in a bold plan, department store owner William B. Thalhimer created a safe haven for the students on a Burkeville farm. This is the remarkable history of Thalhimer’s heroic rescue mission and the struggle of the refugees to make a new home in rural America. Robert H. Gillette narrates an untold saga of sacrifice, survival and hope on two continents.

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