Hendrikus (Hein) Snapper worked in
the municipal labor exchange in the Dutch village of Naaldwijk. Early on, he became
aware of the persecution of Dutch
he and his wife Martha decided to help Jews
In 1942, he joined the Dutch underground
and was put in contact with the de Hartog
family, who had been among the last Dutch
Jews to receive a deportation order and were
desperately searching for a hiding place.
The Snappers, with six small children of
their own, took in Rosa de Hartog and arranged
hiding places for her husband, Levy (Leen),
and their five children with friends and
The Snapper family had previously taken
in two Jews, an elderly woman and a 17-year-old,
but neither could pass as their housekeeper
so they had moved them on to other families.
De Hartog remained at the Snappers for the
next three years. During that time six Nazi soldiers moved into the Snappers’ home.
Martha convinced the soldiers to share some
of their food with her family and that allowed
her to also feed her “housekeeper,” never
letting on that she was Jewish.
In May 1943, a massive deportation of Dutch
men for forced
labor in Germany began. Snapper
used his position at the local labor exchange
to destroy records, and to forge documents
for the de Hartogs. The entire de Hartog
family survived the Holocaust and were united
Hendrikus Snapper died in 1979 and Martha
Snapper in 1980. In 2006, Hendrikus and Martha
Snapper were posthumously recognized as Righteous
Among the Nations for risking their lives
to save Jews.