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Adrienne Lichtig Petrook papers

Document | Not Digitized | Accession Number: 2001.311.1

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    The papers consist of 3 albums, 47 photographs, and 29 documents relating to the Lichtig family during and after the Holocaust.
    inclusive:  1937-1950
    Credit Line
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Adrienne Lichtig Petrook
    Collection Creator
    Adrienne L. Petrook
    Adrienne Petrook (born Adrienne Lichtig) was the only daughter of Ilma (Roth) and Elek Lichtig. She was born November 14, 1941 in Budapest, where her father owned a commercial art and architectural design studio and her mother was a professional hat maker. Both of her parents hailed from towns in the former Czechoslovakia (Ilma from Uzhorod, Transcarpathia, and Elek from Eperjes, Slovakia). In 1939 Adrienne's parents applied to the Czechoslovak embassy in Budapest for Czech citizenship for Ilma's mother, Szerena Roth, and her three brothers, Victor, Andrew, and Elmer Roth. When their application was accepted, the Roth and Lichtig families applied for American immigration visas under the Czech quota. Meanwhile, in September 1940, Elek Lichtig was drafted into the Hungarian labor service, and in March 1941 Victor Roth married a Hungarian Catholic by the name of Erzsébet Szeles.

    Following the enactment of legislation barring Jews in Hungary from owning real estate, the Roth family in Uzhorod arranged to transfer all their property to Erzsébet in August 1941. For her part, Erzsébet prepared a will in which she left all her possessions to her mother-in-law, Szerena Roth. In the fall of 1941, the Roth and Lichtig families were granted immigration visas to the United States, but only Szerena Roth and her sons were able to leave. Elek and Ilma were unable to travel because Ilma was pregnant with Adrienne. On November 14, 1942 Erzsébet gave her niece, Adrienne, a doll for her first birthday. The doll was named "Boszi Baba" (Elizabeth doll). As the political situation deteriorated, Erzsébet stepped in to help the Lichtig family acquire false papers and find hiding places in Budapest. For a time she transferred Adrienne to a non-Jewish family in Budjo, a village near Budapest.

    After the liberation of Hungary, the family reunited. Elek Lichtig tried to rebuild his studio in Budapest, but following the Communist takeover in 1948, decided to take his family to the West. The Lichtigs lived in Salzburg, Austria for several years until immigrating to the United States in 1950. After the war Erzsébet Szeles joined her husband, Victor Roth, in the United States.

    Physical Details

    3 folders

    Rights & Restrictions

    Conditions on Access
    There are no known restrictions on access to this material.
    Conditions on Use
    Material(s) in this collection may be protected by copyright and/or related rights. You do not require further permission from the Museum to use this material. The user is solely responsible for making a determination as to if and how the material may be used.

    Administrative Notes

    Adrienne Lichtig Petrook donated the papers to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in 2001.
    Record last modified:
    2023-02-24 14:04:51
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