BiographyHofmann, Herbert Frank. (Birth certificate misspelled Hoffman, which was also on his passport family used Hofmann); b. August 15, 1914, Oakland, California; 1 year Heald Business College in Oakland, CA; Never in Spain; Father George Hofmann, Mother Sophia Wacker, his father lived at 1105 Oak Street, Alameda, California; Single; Received Passport# 24936, San Francisco series, issued February 24, 1937, which listed his address as 2228 Encinal Avenue, Alameda, CA c/o Margarete Lafler, (his sister’s home, where he and his brother Albert lived); CP; Sailed March 17, 1937 aboard the President Roosevelt; Among a group of seven volunteers who were refused permission to disembark by French authorities due to a lack of funds, the group included Meyer Arnovitch, Abraham Bernard, Albert Clarence Hofmann, Willliam Lux, Oscar O’Neil, and Victor Samulis; All had their passports taken up after returning to the US; Returned to the US on April 10, 1937 aboard the President Roosevelt; Worked as as Seaman, WWII Enlisted in the US Army, June 26, 1942, Served in the ETO; After the war he worked as a bartender; He married Catherine Ballard White in February 1950, one child; d. April 4, 1976, Alameda, California; Brother of Albert Clarence Hofmann; Their older sister Margaret (Margarete) was active in the San Francisco waterfront strikes and likely influenced her younger brothers activism; Family oral history notes that Herb was allowed to disembark but Al was stopped. “When the authorities realized that Al and Herb were twins, they called Herb back and would not let either of them through.”
Siblings: Brothers Walter Julius Hofmann and Albert Hofmann; Sister Edna Marie Margarete Hofmann.
Sources: Sail; Scope of Soviet Activity; USSDA/321/342/351/352/359; Emails from P. Hofmann to ALBA and Brooks; L-W Tree Ancestry. Code A
The Hofmann Twins, By Chris Brooks, The Volunteer Blog, posted September 27, 2017.
Seven American Volunteers Refused Permission to Land in France, By Chris Brooks, The Volunteer Blog, posted July 9, 2017
Photograph: (l-r) Al and Herb Hofmann, undated, Hofmann family photograph.