Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Joseph Gringlas - January 14 & 22, March 18, 1993

Brother's Immigration to America


And uh, it was a couple years we stayed in Germany, in Landsberg. And then finally it was--I think it was 1947 because uh, the, Israel became a nation in 1948, right? So in '47, the--it was called Aliya Bet and they would send peoples going out of Landsberg going to Italy and then to a ship, ships, ill...illegal ships, to uh, eh, to Israel, to Palestine at that time. And I was called at the first because I was in Beriha I was called, the first one. So I said I'm not going to go by myself, I want my brother. And my brother went ahead. There was a man, there was a sister--had a sister and she--so the other one, my brother was not a Halutz. And the other, other Halutz was screaming, no, no, they're not, they're not going to go on the, on that trip because they're not so--first you have to choose the Halutzim. You know, volunteers.


Pioneers. So, so they put, took him away, out of the li...of the, the list to go, my brother and sister-in-law and they put other ones on there. I said, "Without them, I'm not going either." That's the way I stayed on. And they, after a few years they emigrated. There was an opening to go to United States. And my sister, my brother, my brother and sister were--went to, to United States. And I stayed on for, I went, I continued my education, radio electronics in Germany.

You were still in Germany.


But you had, then you planned to come to the United States to be with.

Yeah, I planned to, but I.

Where and where did they come, your brother?

My brother came to--in Portland Oregon. It's funny, it's uh, and I supposed to go to Portland, Oregon too. But I had uncles and my mother's brothers, I told you three brothers living in Detroit. So uh, awhile I was, it was a year in Portland, Oregon. And the situation when he came this country, it was kind of--it was, you know, working was not--jobs getting. So, a cousin was living in, in Landsberg and told him to, to come down to Detroit. I mean, a, a cousin living in Detroit and called him--he called him to come down--to move to Detroit,

From Portland.

It would be better life. 'Cause he has a factory, for people more getting a chance to work and...

How did he go...

...getting a job.

How did he go to Portland then, what?

How did he go to Portland? Eh, people were, you know, coming to United State. Each, each, coming, each, I mean, I mean, person was eh, was supposed to go a certain place. They didn't put all the people in one place in United States. They sent them to Detroit, to New York, to Portland. See he was, but they, they, I guess they.

Did he need an affidavit from somebody?

Yeah, oh, he came--went through the embassy and everything. Yeah, not, but they, he was su...supposed to go to De...to Portland Oregon. And it was, I don't know how they did it. So and so, when I was supposed to go a year later, I was supposed to go to Portland, Oregon too. But meanwhile, I didn't know, I thought he was still in Portland, Oregon. But when I came to Detroit eh, Detroit, to uh, when I came to New York, when I came to United States, they stopped me going to Portland because there was a telegram, my brother sent telegram they--that I should be sent to Detroit instead of to Portland to Portland, Oregon because he was already at that time, he moved to Detroit.

Whe...when your brother left Landsberg, was that difficult?

It was difficult for me, yeah, it was.

When you said goodbye...

I told you, at that time I was, I didn't know if I'd be able to see him too, you know. You never know what's going to happen, see. But he was older, he was married and I guess he wanted to make another life already came to United States.

Must have been difficult for him too.


Must have been difficult for him too.


'Cause you were, you had determined not to be separated.

Yeah. Mm-hm, but.

So then there was another reunion in Detroit.

In, in Detroit, yeah.

© Board of Regents University of Michigan-Dearborn