Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Anne Hirschle - July 21, 2006

Experiencing Anti-Semitism II

Besides the, the incident on the tram with the conductor, do you remember any incidents of anti-Semitism against your father or you or any members of your family?

I did later remember hearing that there was going to be a problem when all his non-Jewish patients said, oh, you know, "Dr. ???, we'll always come to you," um, that there was some problem beginning, that the insurance-the dental insurance would not-Jewish dentists would not be allowed-or then there was-would not be allowed to treat patients anymore. They were kicked out of the insurance. And there was one important thing that I do remember. My sister was being treated by a Jewish doctor at the Jewish hospital. She had already gone to a Jewish school, so things had already been starting because my sister had transferred to a Jewish school, or had been forced to transfer to a Jewish school. Anyway, she was being treated for a skin condition in the Jewish hospital. She was burnt by radium and she had an open uh, sore on her thumb. And my parents didn't want to take any great action because it was a Jewish doctor at the Jewish hospital and it was sort of hushed up that this mishap had happened because it was a-now it would be called malpractice, you know. And um, so I, I was aware that because it was Jewish uh, she wasn't supposed to get treatment elsewhere or something. Anyway I, I realized but I didn't really quite understand why all this commotion, and then when I left Germany to follow my parents, my sister stayed behind with another grandmother-with the other grandmother in the hope that this could be healed and-before she came to England, because my father didn't know how he was going to pay for the expensive treatment in England. Well, it never did heal in time and she did come and follow me. But uh, that was one incident and uh, I, I wasn't really too aware of anything else. Uh, before this dental thing was finalized and before he got the news that he would be able to go to England and practice, he was looking for alternatives of what he could do in England. And I do remember that he was investigating being um, an agent for a patented device. And it had something to do with urine testing and I remember telling my friend, "We're going to go to England with urine." So I didn't really know why all this-it wasn't really explained to me but it was something I'd overheard that maybe he could take this device or, or whatever it was, this technology-this urine technology-and make a living in England with this urine technology. And I can remember saying to my best friend, "Oh we're going to go to England, we're going to go with urine." So I mean things were going on that I didn't understand, but they were going on. And as I say, my sister, who was five years older, was obviously very aware because she was very intent on showing the other children who were marching in their brown leather jackets that we could also march. And although we weren't part of it and I wasn't supposed to say, "Heil Hitler," when they practiced it at school, I was aware that something was going on, but I didn't really understand.

That there had been a change in your life and...

No, I, I didn't understand that.

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