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Oral history interview with Dr. Yves-Eric Schmierer

Oral History | Accession Number: 2019.103.1 | RG Number: RG-50.030.1022

Yves-Eric Schmierer, born on June 12, 1932 in Paris, France, discusses his family, including his brother (Claude, born in 1937), father (Dr. Paul Schmierer, born in 1905 in Chernivtsi, Ukraine); his parents’ political activities in the Socialist Party; his father being naturalized as a French citizen in 1928; his mother, Vala (Valentine) Vilter, who was born in Geneva and raised in Russia and France; attending the local public school; his parents’ decision to not register as Jews with the authorities; his memories of being hungry and scared during the war; his father’s efforts to help the Spanish Republicans; his father being called up to serve as soon as France declared war in September 1939; going with his brother to live in Égreville in the Seine-et-Marne until the armistice with Germany in June 1940; going to Marseille with his mother and brother; his mother obtaining a secretarial job at the Centre Américain de Secours (CAS, which was part of the Emergency Rescue Committee); his father’s several arrests as a French soldier and subsequent escapes; his father reuniting with the family in Marseille, where he also worked at the CAS; the long lines of people in the stairway leading to Varian Fry’s office at the hotel on the rue de Garibaldi; going to live in a small pension in Vence, France run by Adrienne Michel (she later took in Yves-Eric’s mother and grandparents as well as other Jewish families); going with his family to Lezoux, in the Puy-de-Dôme, where they spent 1943 and 1944; his father continuing his clandestine activities; going by bicycle with his mother and brother to a little village in Auvergne; his father reuniting with the family in September 1944 and their move to Rosny-sous-Bois; the resistance activities of his father and how he was recognized as one of those who joined De Gaulle before July 1943; his father’s sudden death at the age of 60; and his mother’s activities later in life and her death a few months before her 105th birthday.

Some video files begin with 10-60 seconds of color bars.
Dr. Yves-Eric Schmierer
Peggy Frankston
interview:  2019 March 13
creation: Ville-d'Avray (France)
2 digital files : MP3.
Record last modified: 2020-03-26 09:39:57
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