Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Charlotte Firestone - March 11, 1982

Hungarian Rule

What kind of things began to happen after the Hungarians came? Uh, did you still go to school every day?

When the Hungarians--oh yeah, you could go to school. That was a must.

Same school.

Yeah, uh huh.

But what, what--without the Czechs, were, were the same students in you school?

Yeah. The same students.

So they hadn't all left.

Czechs left...

You said the same Jewish students as before?

Yeah. Jewish and non-Jewish. The only people who left were the Czech people.

So your father lost his pension almost right away?

Right away when the Hungarians came in, he lost his pension.

And the business?

And the business [pause] I think he lost the business, too.

Did they take the tobacco license away?

Yeah. Yeah. He lost the business, too. They took away his license.

Did he get it back? Later.

Not back, not back.

Pension either?


So how did you--how did you live?

The children were working and they, you know, Europe was different, we were working and we gave the money to my father. My father was God to us. My mother, too. For example, there was the head of the table, that was my father's place. Even if my father wasn't home, nobody wouldn't dare to sit at his place. There was such a respect for the parents, you know, that, you know, you don't hear it today. So we were working and we gave our money to my father or to my mother, all the children.

What were you doing?

I was a dressmaker at that time. I was working as a dressmaker.

You were all working in Munkacs?

We were all working and my older brother was a salesman in a men's clothing store. My younger brother, who is in California, he was a salesman in a hardware store. My younger brother--my sister, was also working in clothing and end of the month--once a month or every once two weeks, they got our pay and they gave it--if my father wasn't home, we gave it to my mother, but mostly to my father, so he shouldn't feel, you know, that he is, he doesn't have any money.

Did you have to register with anybody? Did you get cards?


Did they start to ration food or anything like that?

No. It wasn't by the Hungarians.

Only when the Germans came.

Just when the Germans came.

Um, the six percent clause, did that go into effect in Munkacs too?

Yeah. Sure. Munkacs didn't have a university. We went either to Bratislava or to Prague.

But not to Budapest


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