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Berta Koselova Krakauerova

Mikulov, Czechoslovakia

 

 

Berta was born to a Jewish family. Orphaned when she was a child, she was raised by her Uncle Poldi in Vienna. In 1899 she married Bernard Krakauer, a Jewish businessman from her hometown of Mikulov. As was the custom for orphans, Berta wore a black dress at her wedding. The couple settled in the town of Hodonin, where Bernard opened a dry goods and clothing store. They raised six children.

1933-39: With their children grown, Berta's husband retired in 1938. He sold the business and moved with Berta and their eldest son, Max, who had been born with a heart condition, to the city of Brno where three other Krakauer children lived. In March 1939 the Germans occupied Bohemia and Moravia and quickly imposed restrictions on the Jewish population.

 

 

 

1940-45: On April 8, 1942, Berta, her husband and their son Max were ordered to report to a nursing school and to bring no more than 44 pounds of luggage each. They were deported to the Theresienstadt ghetto in Czechoslovakia. From there, Max was deported to Poland. Berta and her husband later discovered that a sister-in-law of their daughter worked in the SS registry office; this woman made sure that the Krakauers' papers remained at the bottom of the pile of documents of those to be deported.

Berta and Bernard were freed in May 1945, and learned that three of their children had died in Nazi camps. In 1948 Berta died from a kidney disease contracted in Theresienstadt.

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