Photo taken in:OradeaYear when photo was taken:1919Country name at time of photo:RomaniaCountry name today:Romania
This is my father Iuliu Guth's graduation diploma from the Business high school in Oradea. He is in the 6th row, the 1st from right. He graduated in 1918-19, and he studied in Hungarian, as you can see from the diploma because it is written in Hungarian. Many of his colleagues, if you look carefully at the names, were Jews, the majority actually. The high school itself had no Jewish profile, but the Jewish community in Oradea was very big. My father was born in Belgrade, where his father worked, in 1902. After he died, he moved with his mother and her second husband, Schwartz, to Oradea. He graduated from commercial high school in Oradea, where he studied in Hungarian. He met my mother, Estera Guth, in Fagaras, and after they married they came to live in Brasov. They got married at the synagogue in Fagaras in 1930. My father worked as a proxy for the Romanian Banking Society in Brasov, which was actually a branch of a German bank. It was an important position; he had the authority from the general managers of the bank to take decisions in their name. My father worked on Sabbath and didn't observe the kashrut, but he did observe all high holidays. He was a Neolog, but he strongly identified himself as a Jew and he was a fervent Zionist. My father had been a member of Ivria, one of the first Jewish organizations in Brasov, which became Zionist only later. I don't know for sure, but I think he was a key person there. He never talked much to me about it, except that they used to play football. I think my parents had an exclusive circle of friends: they were entirely Jewish. During the war, my father eventually lost his job at the bank because of the anti-Jewish laws, the bank was German and of course all anti-Semitic decisions taken in Germany were implemented here as well. He had to work at the black market, doing some bookkeeping for different companies so that we could make a living.