More than 78,000 Czech Jews were deported to their deaths during the Second World War. In 1946 between 12,000 to 15,000 lived in the country. The community shrunk further with the coming of Communism in 1948, the Communist show trials soon after, and in the wake of the Soviet-led invasion of 1968. Today there are around 3,000 Jews live in today's Czech Republic.
Almost no religious Jews remained in the Czech Republic after 1948, and our family stories and their accompanying photographs reflect this. What we have, however, is a collection of stories and pictures of some of the most erudite and well educated Jews anywhere in Central Europe and their biographies make for fascinating reading. More than a few of these people remained in their country after 1948 because they strongly believed in Communism, and all of them became wholly disenchanted-if not during the anti-Semitic show trials of the early 1950s, then during the Soviet invasion of 1968.
We interviewed 73 elderly Jews in Prague, Brno and other cities. Dr Martin Korcok directs our team in the Czech Republic. We have been working in the Czech Republic since 2002, and we cooperate closely with The Federation of Czech Jewish Communities, The Jewish Museum of Prague, and with The Terezin Memorial.