Jozef Seweryn with friends in Eilat

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  • Photo taken in:
    Eilat
    Year when photo was taken:
    1956
    Country name at time of photo:
    Israel
    Country name today:
    Israel

This is me with my friends - I don’t remember their names. The photo was taken in 1956 in Israel, in Eilat, which used to be a fishing port. 

After the war it was a lot worse with anti-Semitism, as if the Poles had learned it from the Germans and the Russians. Jews would be attacked, murdered, persecuted. There's still some anti-Semitism, but right after the war it was a lot worse. People were leaving for Israel. At that time they would get people from all over Europe, from all over the world, to go to Israel. And in Poland they also suggested for the Jews to move there. So I went to Warsaw, to the embassy and I applied as well. I left in 1956 with my wife and children: 13-year-old Jacek and ten-year-old Krystyna.

We first arrived in Vienna. At first I wanted to stay there, but everyone said, 'Go to Israel, see what it's like there.' I wish I hadn't gone. I should have stayed in Vienna and asked for reparations from the Germans. But we went.

Israel looked nice in 1956. The state of Israel was created; a good thing that was; the Jews deserved it. I found a job in the aircraft industry as I had worked for the Germans in that field. I had experience from the camp, so when I came they employed me immediately, as a professional. I worked in the aircraft factory in Tel Aviv. There's an airport there - Ben Gurion. I went with my wife and children. It was my wife who later decided that we had to go back. And that was it, no discussions. Our son was sick, respiratory tract problems - he couldn't live in that climate. We left in 1959; I never went back there afterwards. 

 

Interview details

Interviewee: Jozef Seweryn
Interviewer:
Zuzanna Solakiewicz
Month of interview:
May
Year of interview:
2004
Warsaw, Poland

KEY PERSON

Jozef Seweryn
Year of birth:
1917
City of birth:
Cracow
Country name at time of birth:
Austria-Hungary
Occupation
before WW II:
Worker at a dentistry supplies store
after WW II:
Worker at an office that assigned apartments, aircraft factory worker, machine factory worker
Family names
  • Previous family name: 
    Kraus
    Year of changing: 
    1942
    Reason for changing: 
    Hiding Jewish identity/nationality

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