Leopold Sokolowski’s family from France

This is my mother’s sister and brother with their families. My mother’s sister, Sala, is sitting first from left. Her husband, Max Barasz, is standing above her. My mother’s brother, Pinek Schnitzer, is standing first from right, his wife, Klara, is sitting first from right. Sala and Max’s children, Lulu and Rennee, are sitting between the adults. The photo was taken in Paris in the 1930s.

My mother had a sister, Sala, and two brothers, Chaim or Henryk and Pinek or Pynchas. My mother's sister, Sala, must have been born in 1897 or 1898. In 1923, before I was born, she went to France with her husband. Her husband's name was Max Barasz. He was a Jew from Oswiecim, who served in the Austrian army. He went to France, made some money there, and came back to Poland to get married. It so happened that he met my aunt in Nowy Targ and came to get married to her. That was the custom, to marry among one's own. Tonka didn't have me yet, but she was already married to my father.

So Max married the younger sister, Sala. He remained in Poland for a while, working to earn for the return trip to France, and then they went. They must have had a pretty good life over there. They opened a hairdressing place in Paris. Before the war, they visited us twice, I think. During the war, they lived in Paris. I don't know the details, but they say it was very hard. Their children's names were Lulu and Ronny. We used to call them Lulek, I don't know how that sounds in French, and Ronny, Renee, which sounds like the Polish Renata. I think her name was really Ruhl, like the grandmother my sister also got her name after. I don't know exactly when they were born

My mother's youngest sibling was her brother who had the same name I do, Pynchas. We used to call him 'Uncle Pinek.' Aunt Sala encouraged him to come to Paris in 1933 or 1934; they taught him the hairdressing trade and he stayed with them. He visited once. He got married in Paris to Aunt Klara, whose maiden name I can't remember.