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Shutzpass issued by the Swiss consulate to Tihamer Pal.

Photograph | Digitized | Photograph Number: 71297

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    Shutzpass issued by the Swiss consulate to Tihamer Pal.
    Shutzpass issued by the Swiss consulate to Tihamer Pal.


    Shutzpass issued by the Swiss consulate to Tihamer Pal.
    1944 October 23
    Budapest, [Pest-Pilis-Solt-Kiskun] Hungary
    Photo Credit
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, courtesy of Yehuda Egri

    Rights & Restrictions

    Photo Source
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
    Copyright: United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
    Provenance: Yehuda Egri

    Keywords & Subjects

    Administrative Notes

    Yehuda Egri (born Ivan Pal) is the son of Tihamer Pal (b. April 4, 1896) and Margit Rosenthal Pal (b. July 9, 1896). He was born on April 4, 1932 in the city of Berehovo in Transcarpathia, and he grew up in Budapest where his father owned a store. In 1939, in accordance with anti-Jewish laws, Tihamer officially no longer could own his store. He therefore asked a non-Jewish employee whom he thought he could trust to serve as the titular owner, while he continued to run the business. On March 19, 1944, German troops occupied Budapest and life quickly changed for the Pal family. On April 3, the day before Ivan's twelfth birthday, Jewish residents were ordered to wear the yellow star. Meanwhile, the man to whom Tihamer had entrusted his store turned out to be a member of the Arrow Cross who prohibited Tihamer from entering his own business. In order to support the family, Ivan's father took a job in a shoe factory. However, on the first day of work a machine fell on his hand and broke it. Consequently Tihamer was temporarily excused from being sent to a labor camp until later that summer. He was allowed to return home for occasional visits. On October 15, after President Horthy tried to negotiate a separate armistice, the Germans orchestrated a coup d'etat and installed the radically antisemitic Ferenc Szalasi as the new head of state. Tihamer's brigade was sent by foot towards the Austrian border. When they arrived in the town of Hegyeshalom, someone appeared from the Swiss Consulate and offered a Shutzpass to anyone who wanted one. Tihamer's commander respected these documents and allowed the entire unit to return to Budapest. Tihamer deserted his unit and returned home to rejoin Ivan, Margit and Ivan's grandfather. The apartment had been specially designated for Jews, and a large yellow star hung on the entrance.

    Ivan's mother and grandfather also obtained Shutzpasses, and the family moved to a safe house. However, in November 1944 the Arrow Cross ordered the remaining Jews of Budapest into a ghetto. The Pal family remained in the ghetto until January 18, 1945 when they were liberated by Soviet forces. Since there was a post-war food shortage in Budapest, Ivan spent several months in a Zionist camp in Szeged where food was more plentiful. In June 1949, Ivan escaped from Hungary to Czechoslovakia. From there he went to Italy where he boarded the Atzmaut bound for Israel. After arriving in Israel, Ivan joined the Israeli army and later became an engineer. His mother joined him in Israel in August 1949, while his father remained in Hungary.
    Record last modified:
    2006-06-21 00:00:00
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