Deniz Nahmias with relatives from Mexico

Deniz Nahmias with relatives from Mexico
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  • Photo taken in:
    Thessaloniki
    Country name at time of photo:
    Greece
    Country name today:
    Greece
In this picture you can see my husband Albertos Nahmias and me with our relatives from Mexico at the railway station in Thessaloniki. The picture was taken in the 1960s. Also in this photo are: Sarina and Haim Boton and my son Iossif Nahmias. My mother's sisters Sarina and Irma were married to two brothers, Haim and Albertos Boton, and after the war they settled in Mexico. They were afraid because there was a popular scenario after the war that the Russians would take over Thessaloniki in collaboration with the communists. And this is why they left. I never went to Mexico to visit them but my daughter went there to find them. Here in Thessaloniki, they owned the textiles shop 'Cosmos' on Venizelou Street. Now it has been replaced by the store 'Fokas.' The new store kept the old name 'Cosmos' for a certain period of time and then changed it. Our relatives in Mexico came to visit us almost every year, because they were missing their old friends, especially those who had stayed in Athens. Until they were very old and helpless they used to come to Greece every year. This was very helpful from a psychological point of view because they knew that back here good and loyal friends were expecting them. They had friends that loved them very much. My mother's sister was in Athens during the war. She was also a Spanish citizen. As I have explained, the Germans didn't kill them but they sent them to Germany. They were imprisoned in Bergen-Belsen but still they had a much better life. My uncle's sister was taken to Casablanca and then to the Middle East. She got on the same ship with her husband and her daughters but her boys were forced to board another ship. The ship on which the boys had boarded sank. Maybe the Germans did it on purpose to kill them. Anyway this ship never reached its destination. It is still a mystery what happened to those people. Some argue that the ship was sunk so that the Germans could get the money of the people onboard. When the Civil War ended the communists left Athens but in Thessaloniki things were different. There was still this feeling of uncertainty. All that time, even after I got married and returned to Thessaloniki in 1950-51, we still felt this danger that the Russians would come and take over Greece, and it would eventually become a communist country. This rumor was in the air for many years. Even when I got married in 1949. We were afraid that the Russians would take over Greece. We had the feeling that this could happen anytime. This was the climate of the Cold War. And the guerillas of EAM had taken over Thessaloniki. My mother's sisters were so much affected by this political uncertainty that they decided to leave Thessaloniki and immigrate to Mexico. They were already married to two brothers and they all went to Mexico.

Interview details

Interviewee: Deniz Nahmias
Thessaloniki, Greece

KEY PERSON

Deniz Nahmias
Year of birth:
1924
City of birth:
Thessaloniki
Country name at time of birth:
Greece
Occupation
before WW II:
Housewife
after WW II:
Housewife
Family names
  • Previous family name: 
    Angel
    Year of changing: 
    1949

Other Person

Sarina Boton
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