South Scotland

Research finds Scot Jane Haining saved 'many' Jews

Jane Haining Image copyright Church of Scotland/Cameron Brooks
Image caption Jane Haining's efforts to help Jewish emigration are detailed in the new book

A Scot who died at Auschwitz saved "many" Jews from certain death by helping them emigrate to Britain, according to new research.

Jane Haining assisted Hungarian women in getting jobs as domestic servants five years before she was taken to the camp where she died in 1944.

The details of her efforts are contained in a new book about her life.

It outlines how Ms Haining, from Dunscore, helped with efforts to assist Jewish emigration.

She worked at the Scottish Mission School in Budapest during the 1930s and 1940s.

Image copyright Church of Scotland
Image caption Ms Haining died in Auschwitz but assisted others to avoid ending up there

When war broke out she refused to return home saying the children needed her in the "days of darkness".

A new book, Jane Haining - A Life of Love and Courage, written by Mary Miller, from Glasgow, casts fresh light on the role she played in helping people to avoid ending up in camps like the one where she would die.

It recounts how, in early 1939, the mission where she worked stepped up its efforts to increase emigration which was seen as the "only way to save the Jews".

"Jane Haining taught domestic management and gave lectures on social life in Britain," the books states.

"George Knight (mission leader) commented that Jane Haining was an able teacher, many a housewife in Britain can testify who received into her home a refugee domestic servant from Hungary.

"The mission started a servants registry to assist with emigration."

Image copyright Church of Scotland
Image caption Mary Miller said she felt "privileged" to tell the story

Ms Miller said she had felt both "privileged and immediately excited" when offered the opportunity to write the biography.

"Jane was an ordinary person who became extraordinary through her love and courage and eventually laid down her life for her commitment," she said.

"She did not compromise, and in our own difficult times there is a challenge there for all ordinary people tempted to look away from evil and find reasons to say: 'There is nothing we can do.'

"Jane Haining reminds us that there is always something we can do."

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