Magdolna Palmai's birthday during the debris carrying

Magdolna Palmai's birthday during the debris carrying
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  • Photo taken in:
    Budapest
    Year when photo was taken:
    1944
    Country name at time of photo:
    Hungary
    Country name today:
    Hungary
    Name of the photographer / studio:
    .
This picture was also taken in September 1944 during ruin clearing. I am in the picture with Klari with whom I worked together, and we were together later too, in forced labor. Unfortunately I don't remember her last name, I lost sight of her during forced labor. What happened to her? I don't know. There was a time when they took people to Gonyu on foot and there they put them on the death ship? From the summer of 1944 until the fall we cleared away the ruins, for which we got a little salary. We couldn't buy many things from our salary, but we could buy bread and a couple of small things. At that time they had imposed a curfew on Jews, but we could walk in the town this way. And of course any money came in handy, because we had no income. At that time we lived like this. The center for the clearing away of ruins was on Andrassy Street 105; before the building was bombed nuns had lived there. In the summer of 1944 I found out from an Arrow Cross boy, with whom we cleared the ruins away at the Vazsonyi Villa, what had been going on at Szent Istvan Avenue 2, an infamous Arrow Cross house in 1944, where they took those whom they caught in the street. It was such a world at that time, we worked together with this Arrow Cross boy. He was a young man, he didn't have any trade yet, so he got a job with the bricklayers. He said that in the house on Szent Istvan Avenue the wall was bloody, then he brought a golden cigarette case. I asked him how he could smoke from that. He said 'with difficulty.' At night the Arrow Cross men made raids. Once we were sleeping in one of the ruined houses with Klari, with whom we worked together on the clearing away of the ruins, and with whom we were together later in forced labor. We couldn't turn the light on, we looked for pieces of parquet in which there weren't any nails, to put under our head as a pillow. We lay in one corner, so that in case there was a proof shot, and it lit up the place, they wouldn't see that we were sleeping there. We could stay there for a couple of nights, then the foreman told us that they couldn't hide us any longer, the ruin clearing was stopped, the front was approaching, so we had to leave. This happened after September 1944, but before 15th October.

Interview details

Interviewee: Magdolna Palmai
Interviewer:
Lehotzky Zsuzsanna
Month of interview:
January
Year of interview:
2005
Budapest, Hungary

KEY PERSON

Magdolna Palmai
Year of birth:
1921
City of birth:
Nyiregyhaza
Country name at time of birth:
Hungary
Occupation
before WW II:
Seamstress
after WW II:
Librarian
Family names
  • Previous family name: 
    Fischer
    Year of changing: 
    1945
    Reason for changing: 
    Marriage
  • Previous family name: 
    Goldman
    Year of changing: 
    1969
    Reason for changing: 
    Assimilation

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