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Switzer family papers

Document | Digitized | Accession Number: 2018.392.1

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    Switzer family papers

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    The collection documents the pre-war, wartime, and postwar experiences of the Switzer family, originally of Zagreb, Yugoslavia (Croatia) including their flight from Zagreb to Italy in 1941, their trek from Aprica, Italy to the Swiss border in 1943, and their immigration to the United States in 1949. Included are report cards of Arthur Switzer; identification papers including birth, citizenship, and marriage certificates; immigration and naturalization papers; and travel permits used to leave Zagreb for Italy in 1941. Also included is a photograph of Arthur, Frieda, and their son Steven Switzer in Aprica in 1943, a contemporary list compiled of the names of Jews who left Aprica in 1943 to seek asylum in Switzerland, and a small amount of documents related to Frieda’s brother John and his wife Margarete Roman.
    inclusive:  1914-2010
    bulk:  1914-1955
    Credit Line
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Steven Switzer
    Collection Creator
    Switzer family
    Arthur Switzer (born Arthur Schwitzer, 1904-1990) was born on 18 July 1904 in Bijeljina, Bosnia-Herzegovina to Wilhelm and Berta (née Lang) Schwitzer. He had one brother, Emil. He married Frieda Roman (later Frieda Switzer, 1904-2006) in 1930. Frieda was born on 6 December 1904 in Vienna, Austria to Akos and Regina (née Bauer) Roman. She had one brother, John (b, 1902). Arthur and Frieda’s son Steven was born in 1934 in Zagreb, Yugoslavia (Zagreb, Croatia) where Arthur co-owned a business with Emil that imported fabrics from England.

    Arthur and his family remained in Zagreb until May 1941 when they went to Susak, Italy. They remained there until April 1942 when the Italian government sent them to Aprica, Italy. In September 1943, as the German army was retreating, the Switzer family, along with 120 other Jews, left Aprica in the middle of the night and walked to the Swiss border where they were granted asylum.

    In December 1944, Arthur and Frieda believed Steven would be safer with another family and placed him with the Mueller family in St. Gallen. Mr. Mueller was originally from Bosnia and had two sons. Steven remained with the family until June 1945 when Mr. Mueller died and was placed with another family in Flawil until September 1945. After Steven was reunited with his parents, they moved to Milan, Italy. In 1949, they immigrated to the United States and settled in New York.

    Physical Details

    7 folders
    System of Arrangement
    The collection is arranged as a single series.

    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

    Donated to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in 2018 by Steven Switzer.
    Record last modified:
    2023-02-24 14:35:04
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