On the sidewalk in Bratislava

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  • Photo taken in:
    Bratislava
    Year when photo was taken:
    1938
    Country name at time of photo:
    Czechoslovakia 1918-1938
    Country name today:
    Slovakia

This photo was taken in April 1938, in Bratislava. It shows my father, Julius, my little brother, Siegfrid, and me, Henrich, on the sidewalk in Bratislava, in front of the Slovak National Theater. In the background you can see cars that belonged to a taxi service.

My father was born in Topolniky, at the time Nyarasd, on 25th November 1900. He finished mercantile school in Dunajska Streda, and then got a job in Bratislava. If I was to describe my father, I'd say he was a fantastic person. A truly good man. He was purposeful, of sound character, and punctual. He always managed to achieve what he wanted. There were never any disagreements between us. He was so tall, that he towered over everyone around him. He was around two meters tall.

As little children, we ran around the town and, during our wanderings, we would always run in to see one of our relatives. I might have been about 10 years old at the time. I remember that we used to go see Aunt Juliska and watch hats being made. Pieces of felt cloth would be stretched over forms, making various styles. Aunt Juliska survived the war, and moved away to Israel. We'd always run in to see another of Grandma's sisters, Regina. Eventually, she lived right across from Grandma. Regina was deported during the war, and probably died in a concentration camp. At Bernat's we'd wander around the stonemasonry and watch him carve letters. Mozes was also a stonemason, and because he lived across from us, we also visited him often. We'd amuse ourselves by painting ourselves with gold paint that he used to paint the letters on tombstones. Bernat and Mozes were deported and died in a concentration camp. During the war we visited Illes, who lived in Nitra. My brother, grandmother and I hid out in the courtyard that was next door to his furniture factory. Illes was also deported. After the war, Jakub returned and emigrated to Australia. So that's the entire family tree on my grandmother's side.

Interview details

Interviewee: Henrich F.
Interviewer:
Martin Flekenstein
Month of interview:
June
Year of interview:
2006
Bratislava, Slovakia

KEY PERSON

Julius F.
Year of birth:
1900
City of birth:
Nyarasd
Country name at time of birth:
Austria-Hungary pre 1918
Year of death:
1964
City of death:
Bratislava
Country of death:
Czechoslovakia 1945-89
Died:
after WW II
Occupation
before WW II:
Businessman, Retail merchant
after WW II:
Office clerk

Other Person

Henrich F.
Year of birth:
1928
City of birth:
Bratislava
Country name at time of birth:
Czechoslovakia 1918-38
Occupation
after WW II:
Departmental head/manager in socialist firms
  • Previous family name: 
    Fleischmann
    Reason for changing: 
    Hiding, Jewish
    Decade of changing: 
    1940

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