Nazi Enclave In New York Changes Discriminatory Policies

In the 1930’s, Nazi sympathizers lived in Camp Siegfried in eastern Long Island, New York, and supported by the German American Settlement League. The narrow and private roads were named after Adolf Hitler and Third Reich figures, lawns were carefully kept and mailboxes with German surnames written on them were placed on streets.

Records show Nazi influence at the camp during the years prior to World War II. The camp was sponsored by a German American fund who promoted Hitler and was loyal to the United States. Thousands of members celebrated what was known as “German Day,” by holding a public festival. Swastikas were common, often found on residents’ homes.

The Nazi camp changed its policies after being accused of discriminating residents, who wanted to buy land in the area and faced difficulties if they didn’t have German origins.

Fred Stern, a board member of the league lived at the camp for 40 years. Stern admitted that the community was previously inundated with German ideas, however he denies the radicalism. Kaitlyn Webber, another resident said her family has always been very open, adding: “We’ve never had any issues with anyone discriminating against anyone up here.”

The league owns the camp’s land and dictated housing rules. People who wanted to sell their homes, have been prohibited from advertising to the public, and could only announce it within a private setting with a league member. Evidence shows it was extremely difficult to sell a house in the area. Stern said that real estate advertisements were by word of mouth, adding that “everybody knew when a house would become available.”

New York’s city attorney called to end the discriminatory practices, and to replace the organization’s leadership.

Source: Fox News

Image: New York City Archives via AP

By: Yael Soffer