Paul Alexander (The Father of the Mother of Doron Zeilberger)

Paul Alexander was born on Dec. 9, 1870, in Tirschtigl, Prussia, the son of Rebecca Pinner Alexander and Solomon Alexander . Paul was very bright, but, in high school only worked on subjects that interested him (science), and hence flunked out after 10th-grade, and at the age of 16, entered a vocational program for pharmacist's assistant, that involved apprentenship during the day, and theoretical studies during the night. The best student in that program was allowed to enter the university without high-school diploma (Abitur), and that happended to be Paul. His University studies culminated with him earning a Dr. phil. in 1897, from the University of Leipzig, under the direction of J. Wislicenus. His dissertation was entitled: `Über die Einwirkung von o-Nitrobenzylchlorid und Matriummalonsaeureaethylester'.

In 1900, he married Elfride Pinner Alexander (1875-1942) , and they had six children listed below.

His specialty was the recycling (regeneration) of rubber. He had numerous patents, both German and foreign, for example US patent no. 844,077 (issued Feb. 12, 1907). He started a company for the recycling of rubber, and became a wealthy man. His fortune came to an end in the mid-twenties because of the great decrease in prices of new rubber, that came from the openings of new markets from Africa, and the great inflation of 1923. He was forced to sell his stately mansion, and move to a much smaller apartment. Nevertheless, he continued his research, and constantly published, and was one of the world's great authorities on the regeneration of rubber. He contributed 4 articles to the first edition (1919) of Ullmann's famous Encyclopedia of Technical Chemistry and 3 articles to the second edition (1930).

He had several mentions in the book `History of the Rubber Industry' published in 1952 by the British Inst. of Rubber Industry.

After selling their house in Insterburgalle 21 in Chalottenburg, Berlin, Paul and Elfrieda moved to Apt. III in Mommsen Strasse 47, Chalottenburg, Berlin.

The directory of Greater Berlin: "Jüdisches Adressbuch für gross-Berlin" has him listed as follows:
Alexander, Dr. Phil. Paul, Fabrikdirecktor, Chalottenburg, Insterburgalle 21.
[here is the street sign (taken by Gil Zeilberger)]

When Hitler came to power, all his children managed to get visas and escape out of Germany, with the exception of Elisabeth ("Bettchen"), who nobody wanted to grant a visa to, because of her heart illness. Not wishing to leave Bettchen behind, Paul and Elfride stayed in Germany.

In May 23, 1942, which was his 46th wedding anniversay, he wrote his Last Letter ( .doc) summarizing his scientific accomplishments, followed by his List of Publications (.doc) [both translated by Kathy Wolff]).
Added Jan. 21, 2019: Many thanks to Micaela Haas for scanning the "afterword" (nachtrag) page 1, page 2, page 3)

When they were taken away, on Aug. 4, 1942, to a concentration camp, Bettchen committed suicide by jumping out of the window. Paul Alexander died of an untreated disease shortly after, on Sept. 5, 1942 in the concentration camp Theresienstadt. See this url.
[Here is his death certificate].

His list of publications (until 1931) appeared in the famous Poggendorff's directory of scientists.

[Added July 5, 2014: Here is a photo of an etching (by Aenny Loewenstein) of Paul Alexander (kindly sent by my cousin Anne Howson)]

His children are: