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Digital book

It is what it was

A guide to 90 years of life from Oldenburg during the Third Reich to the 21st Century in Waikanae, New Zealand

Gerhard Ammermann


Out of print
282 pages, paperback


“My story is nothing special and there is certainly no hidden message in it — it is simply a record of my days, and how I thought about things … So now to the nitty-gritty of my life.”
“You have to play the cards you’re dealt, and if you see an opportunity that you’re sure you’d be sorry to miss, you’d better take it.”

It is what it was tells the story of how Gerhard lived to this maxim, and the experiences and people it brought him into contact with, through major historical events, ultimately landing him in beautiful Waikanae, New Zealand.

About the author

Gerhard Ammermann

Gerhard Ammermann was born in 1930, the youngest son of a farming family whose land in Germany was approximately 5 kilometres from the North Sea, close to the Dutch border. His childhood and teen years were lived during the Third Reich when adults were careful to stay silent, and children warned to “keep away from [a man] and his family … a political administrator in the Gestapo.” It was no small feat to survive the war.

Gerhard’s early career as a wool buyer led him to migrate to Australia, and over time and through countries—Germany, Australia, US America and New Zealand—ultimately into a management position in the chemicals firm Bayer and raising a family of two sons and a daughter, while also finding time to travel extensively and play some of the world’s diverse golf courses.