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world war I

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  • Regina Gutman

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    Regina was born in Radom, a city that had 120,000 inhabitants. Her father worked as a leather cutter for a large shoe manufacturer and her mother took care of their six children. The Gutmans were very religious and Regina attended Hebrew school in the afternoons. Radom had a vibrant Jewish community of some 30,000 people, several Yiddish daily newspapers, and beautiful synagogues. 1933–39: On September 1, 1939, the German army invaded Poland, and seven days later, Radom was occupied. Soon afterward, the…

    Regina Gutman
  • Elzbieta Lusthaus

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    Elzbieta grew up in Iwonicz, a resort town in southwestern Poland noted for its mineral water. Her father, Edmund, was a respected physician and Helena, her mother, had studied pharmacology. At home, they spoke Polish and were among the few Jewish families who lived in Iwonicz. 1933–39: When German troops invaded Poland on September 1, 1939, Elzbieta's father was drafted into the Polish army. Seventeen days later, the Soviet army drove in from the east and Edmund was captured. He was transported to a…

    Elzbieta Lusthaus
  • Lisa Nussbaum

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    Lisa was born to a Jewish family who lived in a town about three miles from the German border. Her family had lived there for generations. Lisa's father exported geese to Germany, and her mother owned a fabric store. The family lived with Lisa's grandmother in a large, single-level, gray stucco house. Lisa attended a small Hebrew school in Raczki. 1933-39: In 1937 Lisa transferred to a public school. One day, in fifth grade during recess, some boys grabbed her long blonde hair. Others joined in and pinned…

    Lisa Nussbaum
  • Emanuel (Manny) Mandel

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    Manny was born to a religious Jewish family in the port city of Riga, Latvia. Shortly after Manny's birth, his father accepted a post as one of the four chief cantors in Budapest and the family returned to Hungary, where they had lived before 1933. Manny's father was based at the renowned Rombach Street synagogue. Between the wars, Budapest was an important Jewish center in Europe. 1933-39: Manny's father wouldn't let him have a bicycle. He thought someone might take it away from him because he was…

    Emanuel (Manny) Mandel
  • Chaim Frenkiel

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    Chaim was the third of seven boys born to religious Jewish parents. They lived in a town near Warsaw called Gabin, where Chaim's father worked as a cap maker. Gabin had one of Poland's oldest synagogues, built of wood in 1710. Like most of Gabin's Jews, Chaim's family lived close to the synagogue. The family of nine occupied a one-room apartment on the top floor of a three-story building. 1933-39: In September 1939, two months before Chaim was 12, Germany invaded Poland. In Gabin 10 people were shot in…

    Chaim Frenkiel
  • Jakob Frenkiel

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    Jakob was one of seven boys in a religious Jewish family. They lived in a town 50 miles west of Warsaw called Gabin, where Jakob's father worked as a cap maker. Gabin had one of Poland's oldest synagogues, built of wood in 1710. Like most of Gabin's Jews, Jakob's family lived close to the synagogue. The family of nine occupied a one-room apartment on the top floor of a three-story building. 1933-39: On September 1, 1939, just a few months before Jakob turned 10, the Germans started a war with Poland.…

    Tags: Auschwitz
    Jakob Frenkiel
  • Inge Scheer

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    Inge grew up in Vienna's Leopoldstadt, a large Jewish district located between the banks of the Danube Canal and the Danube River. The Scheers loved music, and Inge grew up listening to family members singing selections from popular operettas. 1933-39: Inge was 8 years old when the Germans annexed Austria in 1938 and her parents decided they'd better flee. They were smuggled illegally, via the Netherlands, to Brussels where the Jewish community helped to hide illegal refugees like Inge and her family.…

    Inge Scheer
  • Marthijn Wijnberg

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    When Marthijn was 10, his religious Jewish family moved from Groningen to the town of Zwolle. There, his parents ran the only kosher hotel in the region. The Wijnbergs had two other sons and a daughter. All of the children attended Dutch public schools, and four afternoons a week they also went to religious school to study Jewish history, Hebrew and the Bible. 1933-39: Marthijn could play almost any instrument, including piano, saxophone and accordion. Sometimes each of his brothers would pick up an…

    Marthijn Wijnberg
  • Raszka (Roza) Galek

    ID Card

    Roza was born to a Jewish family in a predominately Catholic village near Warsaw. Her father owned a prosperous pearl button factory that employed some 100 people. They shared a large home with Roza's grandmother who ran a general store and bakery in the village. Roza and her three sisters attended Polish schools and took Hebrew lessons at the towns' synagogue. 1933-39: Roza's father frequently did business in Warsaw so the family moved there in 1934. They loved the city, and often went to concerts and…

    Raszka (Roza) Galek
  • Claude Brunswic

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    Claude was one of five children born to Jewish parents in the university city of Heidelberg. His father, a physician specializing in internal medicine, had his practice on the first floor of the apartment building in which the family lived. Claude was an avid swimmer until November 1932, when local Nazi party edicts forbad Jews to use the city pool where he swam. 1933-39: In January 1933, just after Hitler became chancellor of Germany, hoodlums attacked Jewish-owned businesses in Heidelberg. They broke…

    Claude Brunswic

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