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Crouzet family papers

Document | Not Digitized | Accession Number: 2003.351.1

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    The collection consists of documents including a menu written by inmates at Flossenbürg concentration camp, correspondence received by Irene Crouzet from her husband and son, Dr. Gaston and Robert Crouzet, while they were interned in several different concentration camps, and a photograph of Ambroise Cognac.
    inclusive:  1943-1960
    Credit Line
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Jean Crouzet
    Collection Creator
    Gaston Crouzet
    Dr. Gaston Crouzet was born on December 25, 1881, in St. Felix de Lodez, France. He and his wife Irene had a son Robert, who was born on April 21, 1910, in Aignes-Vives. They had another child, who moved to Madagascar with thier spoused and son Jean before the war. The family was Catholic and lived in the center of Marseille where Gaston was a general practitioner. Robert was a public notary. In May 1940, Nazi Germany invaded France. An armistice was signed in June, giving control of Paris and northern France to Germany. A Free Zone was established in the south, governed by Marechal Petain, known as the Vichy Regime. Gaston became a central member of the French resistance in Marseille. His primary responsibility was gathering information about German troop transports to North Africa and relaying the information to the British. Gaston’s network of contacts included an architect who would gather the information from German officers and relay it to Crouzet. His son Robert worked alongside him.

    In May 1943, Gaston and Robert were denounced by another resistance member. They were arrested and interrogated by the Gestapo for several days. They were then sent to Centre Penitentiaire de Fresnes near Paris and then to Compiegne internment camp. On January 29, 1944, they were deported to Buchenwald concentration camp in Germany. Gaston was assigned prisoner number 44158; Robert was number 44159. Both Robert and Gaston were able to correspond occasionally with Irene. On March 18, 1944, the men were separated when Gaston was transferred to Neuengamme, a subcamp of Sachsenhausen. On October 8, 1944, he was sent to Flossenbürg concentration camp near the Czech border. Gaston worked as a locksmith in the camps. In mid-April 1945 as Allied forces neared, the SS began evacuating the camp. When members of the 358th and 359th Infantry Regiments, 90th US Infantry Division, liberated Flossenbürg on April 23, 1945, just over 1500 prisoners remained in the camp, and 200 died soon after liberation. Gaston and another inmate prepared a report to request quick repatriation of the seventy-eight French inmates back to France. They explained how the inmates health was continuing to deteriorate and that French inmates were dying at a rate twice as fast as other prisoners. Gaston returned to Marseille circa May 1945. Robert, 33, had died in April 19, 1944, of typhus in Buchenwald. Irene had remained active in the resistance and provided a hiding place for a Jewish man, British pilots, and a French judge. Gaston was later awarded a Medal of Deportation and Resistance for Acts of Resistance by the French government. Gaston, 86, passed away on December 25, 1967.

    Physical Details

    French German
    1 folder

    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.

    Keywords & Subjects

    Administrative Notes

    The papers were donated to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in 2003 by Jean Crouzet.
    Record last modified:
    2023-06-07 07:06:46
    This page:

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