Photo taken in:BratislavaYear when photo was taken:1920Country name at time of photo:Czechoslovakia 1918-1938Country name today:Slovakia
This is a photograph of the wedding of my parents, Bernhardt Wohlstein and Renata Schubertova, in 1920. My grandparents are seated. They are listed as follows (beginning second from left): my mother's parents, Maximilian and Lolka Schubert, and my father's parents, Katarina and Samuel Wohlstein.
My father was born in 1888 in Sulovace. My mother was born in Cataj in 1900. I was born in 1930 in Nitra, Slovakia, a town only 7 kilometers from the former labor camp in Sered. I lived with my parents and brother on our estate. I started school in Sered; however, as soon as the anti-Jewish legislation was introduced, my parents transferred me to Trnava, where I lived with friends of my family.
I witnessed several pogroms in Trnava. I saw Slovak Hlinka guards beating Jews as they left the local synagogue. In the spring of 1942, the deportations started; my parents decided it would be safer for me to be at home with them, and they brought me back. Our estate and farm were formally Aryanized by a deputy of the Slovak parliament. He was a Lutheran and was very decent to my family. Hlinka guards attempted to round us up three times. Finally, they succeeded in taking us to the Sered labor camp but, thanks to our protector, we were released.
As the situation got worse, my father decided to take the family to Bratislava and stay there illegally. We lived in one room, and my father pretended every morning that he was leaving for work. In fact, he spent the whole day near the Danube. After the air raids started, we had to hide in the cellar. We had been hiding in that room and had never been seen leaving before then. The house residents recognized us as strangers, and someone immediately reported us to the Gestapo. We were again deported to the labor camp in Sered. After spending some time in Sered, we were deported to Birkenau, where my parents died. I survived the death march and was liberated by partisans in Czech Vrchlabi.
After liberation, I came to Bratislava where I went to the Red Cross office to search for my parents and relatives. Only my brother survived. I went with him to Pata and stayed there for some time. Then I moved to Bratislava, married Lorand, and had two daughters, Dagmar and Lydia. Now I am retired and involved in Jewish community life, particularly helping elderly survivors of the Holocaust.