In this photo you can see my father, Saia Grunberg, at the end of World War I. This photo was taken in Trentschin-Teplitz, what is today Trencianske Teplice in Slovakian. He was held prisoner there by the Austro-Hungarians until the war was over, in 1918.
From what my father told my mother when he came back in 1918, he was treated very well as a prisoner; he had to stay on a large farm, and he helped the owner with his bookkeeping, because the owner of the estate had a sugar factory and he needed my father’s help. He had a daughter, and from what my mother told me, the owner kind of hoped my father would stay after the war was over, to marry his daughter; he liked my father very much!
My father, Saia Grunberg, was born in Iasi in 1887. He spoke Romanian, and he studied at a business high school in Iasi. He worked as an accountant and as a proxy for another Jew named Horovitz. I never knew my father, he died in 1921, when I wasn’t even a year old. Everything I know about him is from stories my mother told me.
One year after they got married, in 1915, my elder sister Angela was born. My father had already left for war; in 1914, he was drafted to the Romanian army. During World War I he fell prisoner to the Austro-Hungarians, in Slovakia. He was held hostage until the end of the war, in a place called Trentschin-Teplitz. My mother didn’t know where he was for a while, she was desperate, so she kept on going to Bucharest, to the army’s general staff, and she persisted until she found out that he was alive. My father came home in 1918.