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Portrait of a couple and their one-year old child taken in Hungarian occupied Romania shortly before they were forced into a ghetto.

Photograph | Digitized | Photograph Number: 64075

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    Portrait of a couple and their one-year old child taken in Hungarian occupied Romania shortly before they were forced into a ghetto.
    Portrait of a couple and their one-year old child taken in Hungarian occupied Romania shortly before they were forced into a ghetto.

Pictured are the family of the donor's sister: Hershel, Esther (nee Pollack) and Miriam.  All were later killed in Auschwitz.

    Overview

    Caption
    Portrait of a couple and their one-year old child taken in Hungarian occupied Romania shortly before they were forced into a ghetto.

    Pictured are the family of the donor's sister: Hershel, Esther (nee Pollack) and Miriam. All were later killed in Auschwitz.
    Date
    1944 February 15
    Locale
    Sumuleu, Romania
    Variant Locale
    Csiksomlyo
    Photo Credit
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, courtesy of Regina Ganz

    Rights & Restrictions

    Photo Source
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
    Copyright: United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
    Provenance: Regina Ganz

    Keywords & Subjects

    Administrative Notes

    Biography
    Regina Rivka Ganz (born Regina Pollack) is the daughter of Mendel and Sophie Pollack. She was born on August 10, 1925 in Moiseiu Romania, a small town in Transylvania, where her father worked in the lumber business. Regina had seven older siblings -- Moshe David, Shmuel Eli, Raisel, Chana, Ratza, Esther and Nelly (later Cornelia) and four younger siblings -- Schprinza, Frima, Pessel, and Miriam (who died as an infant). The family was quite religious and spoke Yiddish at home. Since the public schools held classes on Saturdays in violation of the Jewish Sabbath, Regina only attended school for four years. When World War II began, Regina’s brothers were serving in the Russian army, and Raisel, Chana, Ratza, and Esther -- all of whom were married -- were no longer living at home. Esther was living in Sumuleu and Ratza in Satu Mare. In 1939 the Hungarians annexed Transylvania, instituted new antisemitic laws and conscripted Jewish men for labor battalions. Among those who were conscripted was Esther’s husband Hershel Eilic. In 1943 Esther gave birth to a daughter, Miriam, and since her husband was away, Regina moved in with her to care for the baby. In 1944 Germany took control of Hungary, and that spring they confined all of the Jews from the small towns into ghettos in preparation for their deportation to concentration camps. Regina’s parents moved into the Viseu ghetto together with Frima, Pessel and Schprinza. Regina and Esther were incarcerated in a ghetto in Sumuleu and from there deported to Auschwitz. When they arrived at the camp, Esther refused to abandon her young child and therefore was killed immediately together with Miriam. Regina was selected for forced labor and sent to a barracks. Soon after her arrival, she heard someone calling her name. Her sister Schprinza had gone from barracks to barracks looking for her. After being reunited, the two sisters lived in Barrack #20 until the Germans evacuated the camp in January 1945. They were transferred to the Bergen Belsen concentration camp where they reunited with another sister, Nellie. The three stayed together until the British liberated them on April 15, 1945. Regina was extremely ill upon liberation, and the Red Cross sent her to a hospital in Landskrona, Sweden to recuperate. Nelly remained for a while in Germany, and Schprinza returned to Romania to search for other relatives. She found Moshe and Shmuel in Moiseiu, but no other family members survived. Schprinza, Moshe and Shmuel remained in Romania for the next several years until they were able to immigrate to Israel in 1953. Once Regina had sufficiently recuperated, she moved to a different DP camp in Sweden where Nelly came and joined her. There, Regina worked in the camp’s kosher kitchen. In 1948 Regina immigrated to the United States. Since she did not have a sponsor, she was detained when she reached Ellis Island. A worker from HIAS placed an advertisement in the Jewish newspapers saying that a young girl from Romania was in need of a sponsor. Shortly before she would have been sent back to Sweden, Rivka and Herman Greenspan (who themselves had immigrated from Romania) came and claimed her though they were not related. Regina stayed with the Greenspans for the next three months and worked in a clothing factory. A few months later, Nellie also immigrated to America. In 1949 Regina married Josef Ganz from Dragomiresti who had survived the war in the Soviet army.
    Record last modified:
    2007-01-09 00:00:00
    This page:
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