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Jewish Heritage: The Oral Histories - Cuba Family Archives

MEMOIRIST:           LUCY CARSON

INTERVIEWERS:      JOHN KENT

                               RUTH EINSTEIN

DATE:                      JUNE 18, 2007

LOCATION:              ATLANTA, GEORGIA

Transcript (PDF)

BIOGRAPHY

Luiza “Lucy” Rosenblith was born in Antwerp, Belgium in 1931. Her father was a diamond cleaver and Lucy enjoyed a comfortable childhood. When the Germans invaded Belgium in May 1940, Lucy, her father, and her very pregnant mother fled to France with fourteen other family members. In France, the family was interred for two months. After their release, the women, children, and one of the older men in the group found refuge in a small town in unoccupied France. Lucy’s father and four other men were arrested by the Vichy government and later deported. In August 1940, Lucy’s younger sister, Beatrice was born.

In the fall of 1940, life in Vichy France became too dangerous for the women and children. The women decided to go into hiding, but placed the children with the Oeuvre de Secours aux Enfants [French: Children’s Relief Work, or OSE]. Lucy’s mother was arrested and deported soon after she dropped baby Beatrice off with an OSE agent. Lucy and her cousins were sent to a children’s home in central France. They were then split up and Lucy was left at a convent in southern France. Lucy was then sent to a private home in La Sone, France. Finally in 1945, she was sent to another OSE children’s home in Saint-Paul-en-Chablais, France, which was isolated high in the Alps near the Italian border. After the war, Lucy and Beatrice were reunited. Neither of their parents survived. The sisters spent the next two years in Antwerp, Belgium, living with family that had survived.

In 1947, Lucy and her sister came to the United States. They lived with family in Atlanta, Georgia. Lucy finished school and married Sam Carson. Together, they began a successful business and had three sons.

Scope of Interview:

Lucy shares her memories of her early childhood in Antwerp, Belgium. She describes fleeing Belgium with her extend family when the Germans invaded and being interred at a camp for foreign Jews in France. After their release, Lucy recounts the village and an abandoned train station where her family found refuge. Lucy details being separated from the family and spending the remainder of the war in hiding at two children’s homes, a convent, and a private home. She describes being reunited with her sister and returning to Antwerp after the war. Lucy considers her own motivation to survive and her dependence on the generosity of others. She talks about coming to the United States and her adjustment to American culture. Lucy reflects on raising her children, what she shared with them about her experiences, and her return to France after four decades. 


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