Gertruda Weinsteinova

This is a picture of my mom Gertruda Weinsteinova, nee Steinova. The photo was taken in Prague in the 1930s.

She was born into a German-speaking family in Palupin in 1904. She graduated from the German lyceum in Jihlava, which was a kind of secondary school for girls. She met my dad in quite an interesting way.

Mom was one of five children, four daughters and one son, who was the future owner of the estate. The daughters had to get married and the most important thing of all was for the future husband to be a Jew. But they lived in a village where there was no chance of meeting any.

It was, therefore, the duty of an uncle who had studied agriculture in Ceske Budejovice to bring along Jewish boys to see the sisters in Palupin. But because they were girls from the estate and no riffraff, the boys had to be graduates or at least young students. That was the way it was.

Before my brother and i were born, my mom helped dad out in the medical office, but later on she was a housewife. Mom came probably from a more religious family than my dad, but she wasn't religious herself.

She was different from my dad - more practical, and more sociable, too. Ladies would come round to our place quite regularly to play bridge; they spoke German and they were all Jewish.

We used to have various different guests round, though. But as far as I can remember, the closest friends of my parents were all Jews. My mom occasionally played the piano. I learnt to play the piano with my brother, too, but I didn't stick to it.