Photo taken in:BuchenwaldYear when photo was taken:1944Country name at time of photo:PolandCountry name today:Poland
This is a photo from the file of my brother, prisoner # 463 of the Buchenwald concentration camp, Jew Frantisek Neuman, dated 24th May 1944. Americans who liberated Buchenwald gave this photo to him for the memory.
My younger brother was born in 1927 and was given the Czech name of Frantisek, after my father's older brother who died in his infancy. Frantisek went to a Czech grammar school that was supposed to give a better education than state schools.
In April 1944 our family was taken to the ghetto at the brick factory formerly owned by Jew Moshkovich, in Uzhgorod. A month later they were put on the train to Auschwitz. They sorted out those who could work and those who were to be exterminated immediately. My parents and Miklos, Romola’s little son, were taken to one side, and Frantisek, Judit, Magda and Romola were taken to another side.
In May 1944 Frantisek was sent to Buchenwald from Auschwitz. The only guilt of Frantisek was that he was a Jew, he had done nothing wrong. Before he was taken to the ghetto in Uzhgorod, and then to the concentration camp, Frantisek was a school boy, a last-year student of the grammar school. In the last days of his imprisonment in Buchenwald he could only stay in his bed. The dying young men were put on the upper-tier beds and they were not able to get up to even go to the toilet.
My brother was rescued by the American troops that came to the camp. He was taken to an American hospital where he stayed for almost two months. Frantisek had severe dystrophy and the doctors were afraid he was going to die, but he was young and overcame the disease. He was hoping to find somebody at home and refused to go elsewhere. So we met. My brother told me very little about his imprisonment in the camp. He wanted to forget it.
My brother stayed in Uzhgorod for a few months. I was hoping he would stay with me, but he decided otherwise. He didn’t want to live in the Soviet regime. Before the middle of 1946 it was possible to move elsewhere from Subcarpathia. Frantisek moved to Czechoslovakia and from there – to Australia, where he changed his name to Frank Newman.