Hungary SIG #Hungary RE: Yellow Star houses - h-sig digest: July 16, 2018 #hungary


judyyoung@...
 

(I am replying to the list as I think this may be of interest to some other=
s as well, or some others can provide additional information that would be =
useful to others.)

Dear Michele,

You make a statement that is not quite correct: "this is not a Yellow Star =
house, but rather, Jews who are required to wear the Yellow Star are not pe=
rmitted to live here"=20

It's a little more complicated than that: it appears that Jews who had to w=
ear the yellow star were in fact allowed to live in there. The document lis=
ts all residents in the house by ownership or whether they are the main ren=
ters of the apartment. There is only one owner (who it seems owns the build=
ing) and she is not required to wear the yellow star. But of the renters, t=
here are two (including your grandfather) who are required to wear the yel=
low star (ie. they are Jews). (And two apartments are empty because the ow=
ners have been "removed" - either forcibly moved out or had been asked/told=
to leave.) =20

There is no date that I can see on the document (just the year 1944) or any=
mention of whether the house was designated a yellow star house or not. As=
far as I know, >from about the middle of June 1944 the city of Budapest des=
ignated certain apartment buildings in which only Jews were supposed to liv=
e and these became known as Yellow Star houses because a yellow star had to=
be fixed on the outside of the building. (This was part of an effort to co=
ncentrate Jews for an eventual further deportation after the countryside wa=
s emptied of its Jews - this of course did not happen anymore as the Allies=
were beginning to win the war). But there were other buildings in which =
Jews lived and some of these also became known as Yellow Star houses. Obvi=
ously it was a complicated thing to check and supervise all buildings as to=
how many Jews lived in them and some could "hide" their Jewishness; althou=
gh the authorities made an effort to find out - and that is why such forms=
as this one had to be filled in (interesting that they did not have to wri=
te on the form "Jew" but instead whether they had to wear the star or not..=
.). The concierges had the role of declaring if the tenants were required =
to wear the yellow star (all Jews had to) or not. So some Jews were able to=
avoid being "detected" as Jews; they could bribe the concierge, etc. Your=
grandfather and family may have been able to hide for the remainder of the=
war (and of course it made little difference that they had converted...).

There is a fair amount of information about the Yellow Star houses (and som=
e has been shared on this list, eg the Open Society Archives had a project =
in 2014 with a list, map, and the history of these houses. ) By the way, =
Jews living in Yellow Star houses had to move into the Budapest ghetto in N=
ovember of 1944 (the Hungarian Arrow Cross government which came to power i=
n mid October 1944 was still hoping to get rid of the remaining Jews and k=
illed many thousands of them between October and the liberation of Budapest=
in Feb 1945).

Hope you find more information...
Best,
Judy

Judy Young Drache,
Ottawa

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