FROM THE CENTROPA ARCHIVE

Gerda Feldsberg

Photo title: Gerda Feldsberg
Photo taken in: Vienna, Austria (1935)
Interviewee: Gerda Feldsberg
Interviewer Tanja Eckstein

My parents often went to the theater, the opera and concerts. My dad, however, always fell asleep. Everything would have been fine, if Adolf [Hitler] hadn’t arrived! In Porzellangasse there was a candy store with five steps leading up to it, and every day after school I bought some sweets there. One day, like every other, I went in there, put my schilling on the counter and took some candy. But the shop assistant just threw me out. I thought she was joking, or that maybe she thought I didn’t want to pay, so I went back in and said to her, ‘I have money!’ Whereupon she took me to the door and pushed me down the steps. When I returned to Vienna for the first time after the war, I met her by accident and she told me that it wasn’t her fault, that she had to do it. 

I had a wheelbarrow and a doll carriage and my mother always took me to Votivpark. There I played with other children in the sand-box, while the mothers sat together, chatting. I remember one day – it was in 1938 – when I wanted to play in the sand-box as usual. All of a sudden some boys pounced on me, and within an instant the parents had arrived as well. They wanted to beat me and drag me out of the sand-box. My mother, who had been sitting on a bench, jumped up, grabbed me and ran away with me. I was very surprised at my mother because I thought she should tell these people that they weren’t allowed to do this to me.