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Oral history interview with Frank Salz

Oral History | Accession Number: 2014.380.1 | RG Number: RG-50.106.0234

Frank Salz (né Josef Franz Salz), born on February 11, 1936 in Loket, Czechoslovakia, discusses his childhood in Marienbad (Mariánské Lázne, Czech Republic); his parents' haberdashery store; how in September 1938 he was ordered to Prague on 24 hour notice by the Germans; Jewish children not being permitted to go to school; being scheduled to go to England on September 8, 1939 on a children’s transport but not going because the war started; his family receiving a letter on November 17, 1942 giving them two days to report to the railroad station, where they stayed for two nights; being transported in cattle car number CC 111 with his parents and grandmother to Terezin (Theresienstadt); living in Hanover Barracks with 50 other people; his maternal grandmother, Emilie Schenk Steiner, being sent to Auschwitz; his mother, Hedwig, working in a mica factory and his father, Otto, being a police officer; going to a sub rosa school; receiving a package of food from US relatives in June 1944; his father saying “Take care of your mother” when Otto was transported to Auschwitz in September 1944; carrying boxes of grey ashes from the crematorium so he could receive a can of sardines; contracting measles and having to sleep on the barracks floor; seeing Russian soldiers on May 9, 1945; being quarantined for three weeks and then returning to Prague; his neighbors returning everything they had kept safely to his mother; being the only Jewish child in class and getting stones thrown at him; going to the railroad station every day for six weeks looking for his father; going to Sweden in 1946 and arriving in New York on July 22, 1946, having been sponsored by his uncle Carl Schenk; going to school for Jewish orphans in Pleasantville, NY; attending high school in New York; receiving two scholarships to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT); going to graduate school, serving in the Army Corps of Engineering, getting married, and moving to Hartford, CT; selling his engineering firm and going to law school; moving to California; how until 10 years ago he had never spoken about his experience to his children or fellow workers; and returning in 1984 to Terezin, where he learned that he was one of only 94 children there who survived out of 15,000.


Some video files begin with 10-60 seconds of color bars.
Interviewee
Frank Salz
Interviewer
Gail Schwartz
Date
interview:  2014 October 23
Language
English
Extent
1 digital file : WAV.