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Theresienstadt ghetto-labor camp scrip, 2 kronen note acquired by a Hungarian Jewish youth and former concentration camp inmate

Object | Accession Number: 2012.409.10

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    Theresienstadt ghetto-labor camp scrip, 2 kronen note acquired by a Hungarian Jewish youth and former concentration camp inmate


    Brief Narrative
    Theresienstadt scrip valued at 2 kronen that belonged to Ladislav Glattstein. Theresienstadt was mixed use camp, primarily a transit camp and a ghetto-labor camp, in German occupied Czechoslovakia from November 1941-May 9, 1945. All currency was confiscated from camp prisoners upon entry and replaced with scrip and ration coupons that could be exchanged only in the camp. Ladislav, 18, and his family lived in Munkacs, Czechoslovakia (Mukacheve, Ukraine), when it was annexed by Hungary in fall 1938. In 1942, Ladislav was conscripted into a Hungarian forced labor battalion. He was sent to Nagybana labor camp, and, in 1944, to the Ukraine and Balf labor camp. In January 1945, Ladislav was transported to Mauthausen concentration camp in Austria, and in March, via death march to Gunskirchen subcamp. The camp was liberated by the US Third Army on May 5, 1945. Ladislav's father Julius and his sisters, Edith and Klari, were deported to Auschwitz in May 1944; only Edith survived. Ladislav emigrated to El Paso, Texas, with the assistance of his maternal grandparents and uncles in June 1946.
    issue:  1943 January 01
    issue: Theresienstadt (Concentration camp); Terezin (Ustecky kraj, Czech Republic)
    Credit Line
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of the family of Larry A. Gladstone, M.D.
    front, upper center, red ink : QUITTUNG ÜBER / ZWEI KRONEN [RECEIPT OF / TWO CROWNS]
    front, center, red ink : 2
    front, lower right corner, red ink : 2
    reverse, upper left corner, plate mark, red ink : A023
    reverse, center, red ink : Quittung / über / ZWEI KRONEN [Receipt / of / TWO CROWNS]
    reverse, upper right corner, red ink : 2
    reverse, lower left corner, red ink : 2
    Subject: Larry Gladstone
    Designer: Peter Kien
    Printer: National Bank of Prague
    Ladislav Glattstein (later Larry Gladstone) was born on September 26, 1922, in Vysna Kamenica, Czechoslovakia, (now Slovakia), the only son of Julius, born 1884, and Anna Blaugrund Glattstein. He was born in the same house where his great-grandfather was born in 1828. His father’s family was Jewish Orthodox and prosperous from forestry, livestock, and farming. Julius was an innkeeper and teacher, and a World War I veteran. His only brother left for America after that war. Anna had six brothers: Joe, b. 1884, and Herman, Max, Sigmund, David, b. 1903, and Maurice, b. 1907. One brother immigrated to El Paso, Texas, in 1903. The others joined him and they operated several retail furniture stores. Ladislav had two sisters: Edith, born November 11, 1924, and Klari, born in 1929. Around 1930, they moved from their small village where they were the only Jews, to Mukacevo (now Mukacheve, Ukraine), partly for its educational opportunities. Ladislav attended a Zionist oriented school, taught all in Hebrew. His main language was Slovak, but he was fluent in German and Hungarian. His father taught religion in the public schools where it was a required subject. In 1938, Ladislav’s grandparents, Ignatz (Isaac) and Hany (Chaya) Ungar Blaugrund, left for El Paso. Ladislav’s mother Anna died in 1938 after a long illness. In September 1938, Germany annexed the Sudetenland in Czechoslovakia, and Hungary annexed the Supcarpathian Rus, which included Mukacevo.

    Hungary had anti-Jewish laws similar to the Nuremberg racial laws of its close ally, Nazi Germany. By 1940, when Ladislav graduated high school, Jews could not attend university and he began tutoring in Hebrew, Latin, and math. Jewish males were not accepted into the army, but many were conscripted into forced labor battalions, which were controlled by the army. In summer 1941, Hungary joined in the German invasion of the Soviet Union. By 1943, Ladislav was in a forced labor battalion, digging ditches for communication cables and repairing bomb damaged roads at Nagybanya (Baia-Mare) labor camp. In March 1944, Germany occupied Hungary. Ladislav continued to receive frequent postcards from his father, often mailed by sympathetic German neighbor. His father told him about the invasion and that the family had been moved to a ghetto. The postcards stopped in early May 1944. Ladislav’s labor battalion was shipped to a small empty town called Dolina in southern Poland, now Ukraine. He asked a German soldier what happened to everyone and was told that they were Jews, so we shot them. Their rations were cut to starvation level: a cup of coffee, a slice of bread, watery soup. Ladislav contracted pneumonia and a Hungarian doctor put him in a military hospital where he was cured and got three meals a day. The Germans were retreating from Soviet territory and there were frequent artillery barrages as the Soviets advanced. The labor battalion was shipped back to Hungary that summer and put under the control of the German SS. They then began a death march to the Austrian border and many were beat or shot along the way. At one point, they were locked into a boxcar with no food and water for five days. Around September, they reached Balf slave labor camp. It was bitterly cold and they worked digging deep anti-tank trenches. Ladislav found a pair of felt lined, wooden shoes, which kept his feet from freezing and developing gangrene, which happened to those with leather shoes, who were then shot. Ladislav contracted louse born typhus fever and hid in a stable for many days. When he emerged, he saw American bombers flying above. In January 1945, they went on another death march to Mauthausen concentration camp in Austria where they worked in a rock quarry. Conditions were even worse There were no fields to scrounge for food and everywhere you looked, there were corpses lying on the ground. As Ladislav later testified: “If a bullet didn’t get you, the cold, filth, hunger, and disease would.” In March, he was sent on a death march to Gunskirchen, a Mauthausen subcamp concealed in the forest near Lambach. Ladislav was part of the crew digging mass graves for the hundreds of dead and soon to be dead. One day as he was digging, a Sherman tank broke through the gate and American soldiers told them they were free. This was the US Third Army and it was May 5, 1945. Ladislav asked the Americans how they found the camp and was told that they could smell it while miles away.

    Ladislav went to Vienna and then to Prague in July 1945. He visited Mukachevo in August and was told by the people’s living in his family’s home that it was not his house anymore, and he should leave, or else. He enrolled in Charles University while working in a repatriation camp. Ladislav’s uncles David and Sigmund sponsored his visa application and sent money for a plane ticket from Paris to El Paso, Texas. His sister Edith, whom Ladislav thought had died at Bergen Belsen, contacted the family in Texas in October 1945. When Edith, Klari, and his father arrived at Auschwitz, she and Klari were selected for labor. His father was killed in the gas chambers. Klari got a rash a few weeks later and was sent to the gas chambers. Edith was sent in October to a slave labor camp in Schlesien. In January 1945, she was transported to Bergen Belsen and liberated in April by British forces. She spent several years recovering from tuberculosis in Sweden and came to El Paso in 1948. She later married Leo Schwartz and had three children.

    Ladislav reached El Paso in June 1946. He entered the pre-medical program at the College of Mines, and attended Southwestern Medical School in 1948, specializing in internal medicine. When he became a citizen in 1952, he Americanized his name to Larry Gladstone. In 1953, Larry married Beatrice Marcus and they had three children. After serving in the Army Medical Corps, he began his successful medical career in 1958 in El Paso, and retired in 1992. Larry, 87, passed away on June 4, 2010, in El Paso.
    Franz Peter Kien was born January 1, 1919, in Varnsdorf, Czechoslovakia (Czech Republic), to Leonard and Olga Frankl Kien. His father Leonard was born in 1886, in Varnsdorf, and was a member of the German-speaking Jewish population in the, the Sudetenalnd, which bordered Germany. Leonard was a textile manufacturer with his own factory. Peter’s mother Olga was born in 1898, in Bzenec, Austro-Hungary (Czech Republic), to Jewish parents. After 1929, the Kien family moved to Brno. Peter enrolled at the German Gymnasium, where he excelled at drawing, painting, and writing. In 1936, he graduated and moved to Prague to study at the Academy of Fine Arts. He also attended the Officina Pragensis, a private graphic design school run by a well-known Jewish artist, Hugo Steiner-Prag.

    On September 29, 1938, Germany annexed the Sudetenland. On March 15, 1939, Germany invaded Prague and annexed the Bohemia and Moravia provinces of Czechoslovakia, ruled by a Reich Protector. Jews were banned from participation in government, businesses, and organization, including schools. Peter had to leave the Academy, but continued to study at the Officina Pragensis. He also taught at Vinohrady Synagogue. In September 1940, Peter married Ilse Stranska, who was born on May 9, 1915, in Pilsen, to Jewish parents.

    In late September 1941, Reinhard Heydrich, the SS head of RSHA, Reich Main Security Office, became Reich Protector. Soon there were regular deportations of Jews to concentration camps. At the end of November, Theresienstadt concentration and transit camp near Prague got its first shipment of Jewish prisoners. On December 14, Peter was transported to Theresienstadt ghetto-labor camp. He was assigned to the technical department where he worked as a draftsman and designer alongside other artists, including Bedrich Fritta, Leo Haas, and Jiri Lauscher. On July 16, 1942, Peter’s wife Ilse arrived in the camp. On January 30, 1943, Peter’s parents Leonard and Olga were transported from Bzenec to Terezin. Peter was assigned major projects by the Jewish Council that administered the camp for the Germans, such as the scrip receipts used in place of money in the camp. He secretly documented the inmate’s daily life, creating portraits and other drawings, and wrote plays, poems, and an operatic libretto. On October 16, 1944, Peter’s wife Ilse and his parents Leonard and Olga were selected for deportation. Peter volunteered to go with them. Before leaving, Peter and his family were sent to Auschwitz concentration camp in German-occupied Poland. Peter survived the selection process, soon fell ill, likely with typhus, and died at age 25 in late October 1944. His wife and parents were killed at Auschwitz. Some of the work that Peter left with other prisoners or hid at Theresienstadt survived and has been exhibited worldwide.

    Physical Details

    Exchange Media
    Object Type
    Scrip (aat)
    Physical Description
    Laminated, 2 kronen scrip printed on offwhite paper with a graphic design on the face in black and red ink on a red patterned background. On the left is a medallion with an image of Moses holding 2 stone tablets with the 10 Commandments in Hebrew characters; to the right is the denomination in German text and a numeral 2, with text below. On the right side is a wide, offwhite border with the denomination 2 below a 6-pointed Star of David. The reverse has a red geometric background design, German text, and a scrollwork line. Below the text is an engraved signature. The denomination 2 is in the upper right corner. The left side has a wide, off-white border with the denomination 2 in the lower corner with a 6-pointed Star of David above. The plate letter and number A023 are in the upper left corner. The scrip is worn, creased, and discolored.
    overall: Height: 2.125 inches (5.398 cm) | Width: 4.250 inches (10.795 cm)
    overall : paper, plastic laminate, ink

    Rights & Restrictions

    Conditions on Access
    No restrictions on access
    Conditions on Use
    No restrictions on use

    Keywords & Subjects

    Administrative Notes

    The scrip was donated to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in 2012 by Stuart Blaugrund, executor, and Cynthia Gladstone, the daughter of Larry Gladstone.
    Funding Note
    The cataloging of this artifact has been supported by a grant from the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany.
    Record last modified:
    2022-07-28 20:13:57
    This page:

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