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Martin Hans Munzer

Seesen, Germany

Hans was born to Jewish parents in a town in northwestern Germany. The family moved to Berlin when Hans' father obtained a post there as a history teacher in a secondary school. After graduating from university, Hans married and settled with his wife Margaret in an apartment in Berlin. In 1920 their child Wolfgang was born. Hans worked as foreign representative for a sewing notions company.

1933-39: When the Nazis won the election a few weeks ago, I was afraid for people like me who are active members of the socialist party. I was right. Someone has just slipped a note under our door with a warning: The Nazis are rounding up socialists, and, as the local district supervisor for the Social Democratic Party, I'm on their list. We're going to leave in a hurry and try to sublet a room under an assumed name in another neighborhood.

1940-44: It's been almost 10 years since I fled Germany. My second wife, Lucie, and I used to live in Paris but when I had a falling out with my business partner, we decided to move here to Nice. The city is a kind of haven for Jews in France because the Italians, who have occupied this area, leave us alone. Lucie and I run a lending library. Sometimes we think about going to Spain and from there to the United States, but we still feel safe here in France.

In September 1943 German troops occupied Nice. Six months later, Hans and Lucie were deported via Drancy, outside Paris, to Auschwitz where they were gassed on arrival.

 

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