Wooden toy bus owned by a Czechoslovakian Jewish girl
after 1933-before 1938 September 11
Ústí nad Labem (Czech Republic)
- Object Type
Wooden toys (lcsh)
- Credit Line
- United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Renata Polt
Wooden toy bus given to Renate Pollatschek (later Renata Polt) by her parents in the 1930s when they were living in Ústí nad Labem, Czechoslovakia. The bus is a German toy with “Eilkraftwagen” painted on the sides, rather than “Autobus.” The new word was likely created by the Nazi party to replace foreign words like “Autobus” in the German language. Renate lived with her parents, Friedrich and Elisabeth, her older brother, Hans, and her paternal grandmother, Henriette. She was less than a year old when Adolf Hitler was named Chancellor of Germany on January 30, 1933. Friedrich, was concerned about Hitler’s anti-Jewish policies, so when he found out that German troops were gathering at the border in September 1938, he decided to get his family out of Czechoslovakia. On September 11, 6-year-old Renate left with her brother and their parents for Lucerne, Switzerland. Her grandmother, Henriette, came to visit and Friedrich tried to convince her to stay with them, but she refused. In April 1939, the family left Switzerland for Havana, Cuba, before settling permanently in the United States in September 1940. The family stayed in contact with Henriette through letters. She eventually decided to emigrate, but was never able to get the required paperwork to leave. After the war, Renate and her family found out that Henriette had been transported to Theresienstadt ghetto-labor camp in German-occupied Czechoslovakia on July 13, 1942, and then deported to Treblinka II killing center in German-occupied Poland on October 19, where she was murdered.
Record last modified: 2019-08-12 10:14:01
This page: https://collections.ushmm.org/search/catalog/irn551457
Also in Pollatschek family collection
The collection consists of a toy bus and correspondence relating to the Pollatschek family in Czechoslovakia before the Holocaust, and in Czechoslovakia, Cuba, and the United States during and after the Holocaust.
Correspondence, chiefly from Henriette Pollatschek, written circa 1939-1942, and sent from Czechoslovakia to her son, Friedrich, and his family, first in Cuba and then the United States. The correspondence describes Henriette Pollatschek's attempts to emigrate, and conditions in German-occupied Czechoslovakia during this period, including forced relocations, liquidation of property and assets, and antisemitic measures, as well as Pollatschek's response to them. Also includes correspondence from Friedrich Pollaschek (later Polt), with various immigration authorities, banks, shipping lines, and others, in his efforts to help his mother and sister emigrate from German-occupied Czechoslovakia.