Leonora Acs and siblings

Leonora Acs and siblings
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  • Photo taken in:
    Budapest
    Country name at time of photo:
    Austria-Hungary, pre 1918
    Country name today:
    Hungary
Here you can see the four children, already older. From left to right: Erno Sebestyen, Lili, my mother Leonora, and Lajos. Erno, the oldest could be eighteen here. This was taken at a photographers, I think, it looks pretty set-up. No idea about the photographer. My grandparents? youngest child, Lajos Sebestyen, was born in 1908. Both the boys, Erno and Lajos were trained as lawyers, and for my grandfather to afford that expense, his two daughters had to find husbands from wealthy families. That was the cost of educating the boys. The girls succeeded. Note well, that the boys couldn't really practice because, by the time they were qualified, the Jewish laws [see: anti-Jewish laws in Hungary] came in. The older brother, my uncle Erno Sebestyen, probably lawyered a little bit, but Lajos never did. I have a lot of personal memories of uncle Erno, but I didn't have a close relationship with him. He was a curious man, and because of his political views, there were a lot of arguments with him. He lived for a long time in Germany. ...[He?d] been working in Germany in the 1930s, in the time of Hitler, as a commercial agent, was a little dazed by what the Germans were producing, Hitler's products. There were a lot of bloody arguments within the family because of that, they couldn't understand how a Jew could vouch for anything the Germans did. He worked a bit as a lawyer and was able to live through the war with false documents, working in a factory. There was a pretty big age difference between Erno and their next child, Lilike who was born in 1901. She died young around 1930. The family never got over her death. It was a tragedy for us, she got blood poisoning and they couldn't cure her. Then came my mother, Leonora Sebestyen, born in 1904 and probably died in Ravensbruck. My mother spoke very eloquently and attended the acting school for a while. But nothing came of that, most likely, due to financial reasons, she had to quit. She became a housewife and lived at home. My grandparents? youngest child, Lajos Sebestyen, was born in 1908. Both the boys, Erno and Lajos were trained as lawyers, and for my grandfather to afford that expense, his two daughters had to find husbands from wealthy families. That was the cost of educating the boys. The girls succeeded. Note well, that the boys couldn't really practice because, by the time they were qualified, the Jewish laws came in. The older brother, my uncle Erno Sebestyen, probably lawyered a little bit, but Lajos never did. Lajos got married in the early1940s, to Magda Wollak. They had an tropical fruit grocery on Erkel street. Lajos died in a labor camp in the Ukraine. The last we heard from him was in 1943. I still have the letter, in which he wrote that in a few days, they?re taking him with the 41st or 42nd battalion, and to try to help him, but we didn't succeed. The Arrow Cross shot Magda into the Danube.

Interview details

Interviewee: Mariann Szamosi
Interviewer:
Klara Laszlo
Month of interview:
February
Year of interview:
2004
Budapest, Hungary

KEY PERSON

Leonora Acs
Year of birth:
1904
City of birth:
Budapest
Country name at time of birth:
Austria
Year of death:
1945
City of death:
Ravensbruck
Country of death:
Germany
Died where:
Ravensbruck
Occupation
before WW II:
Housewife
Family names
  • Previous family name: 
    Sebestyen
    Year of changing: 
    1926
    Reason for changing: 
    Marriage
  • Previous family name: 
    Rosenfeld
    Year of changing: 
    1938
    Reason for changing: 
    Assimilation

Other Person

Lili Kertesz
Year of birth:
1901
City of birth:
Budapest
Country name at time of birth:
Austria
Year of death:
1930
City of death:
Budapest
Country of death:
Hungary
Died:
before WW II
Occupation
before WW II:
Housewife
  • Previous family name: 
    Sebestyen
    Reason for changing: 
    Marriage
    Decade of changing: 
    1920

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