Szidi Langer, Lajos Mandl,
and their children Anna and George
Miskolc, ca. 1912
Henrik Mandl (spelled Mandel in some records) was born in Serke (Gomor county) in 1852 and died in Miskolc in 1927. A 1938 copy of his death certificate lists the names of his parents as Jakab Mandel and Roza Heller. In 1875, Henrik married Jozefin (nicknamed Pepi) Grunefeld, daughter of Leopold Grunfeld and Fanny Grunvald. Henrik and Pepi had five children: Regina (1875-76), Lajos (1877), Deszo (1879), Debora (1881), and Eszti (1884), the last four of whom are confirmed to have been born in Miskolc.
Szidi Langer as a young girl
Lajos Mandl was a bookkeeper in a bank. In 1907, he married Szidi Langer. Although Szidi had been born in Mezonyek (a small town on the outskirts of Miskolc) on October 17, 1885, she had moved to Miskolc prior to her marriage to Lajos. The Mandls had a daughter Anna Nora and a son Gyorgy (George). They resided at 2 Deak Ter in Miskolc.
The Mandls' home at 2 Deak Ter in Miskolc
Anna was an excellent pianist and linguist who spoke German, Latin and Greek and studied French at a university in Dijon, France. She married Jozsef Rubner, son of Herman Rubner and Liszka Feldman, who was born in Satoraljaujhely (Zemplen county) in 1902. Jozsef was a forest engineer and lumber merchant. The family moved to Budapest shortly before the war, where Jozsef and Anna had two daughters: Eva Krisztina (known as Kristina) and Anna Veronika (known as Vera). At Kristina's wartime birth in 1943, an attempt was made to save her from the Nazis. The birth registry lists her parents as Jewish, then notes: “According to the Certificate of Christening #842/1945 issued by the Roman Catholic Parish of the Franciscan Fathers in Budapest, the mother being converted to the Catholic faith, the child became Roman Catholic.” Vera was born in 1945, only a few months after her father's death.
Lajos died around 1941, from natural causes. Szidi, Anna, Kristina, and Vera survived the Holocaust in Budapest. It is believed that they were hidden by Christians. Jozsef was conscripted into a forced labor batallion and died in Kozseg in 1945.
Lajos and Szidi’s son George was born in Miskolc in 1908. He attended the Frater Gyorgy Gymnazium and, in 1926, went to medical school at the University of Vienna. By 1933 or 1934, he was living in Parma, Italy and working as a dentist. In February 1939, he managed to secure passage to Havana, where he arrived the next month. George lived in Havana until February 1941, when he received permission to enter the United States. His emigration to the US was sponsored by Lipot (Leo) Ferber, who was born in Miskolc and probably knew George from there. In the ensuing years, George spent time in New York City, Meriden, CT, and Cleveland, OH before settling in Bethel, CT in 1944. He practiced family medicine in Bethel until his death in 1977.
Henrik Mandl and Pepi Grunfeld were the paternal great-grandparents of Miskolc researcher Alan Mandl, son of George Mandl. Speaking of his father, Alan has noted: “Like a number of people who endured separation from family, exile, guilt and loss, my father did not discuss his childhood or his adult passages with me. Fortunately, a number of papers and photos help tell his story and have enabled some filling in of facts, with additional research tied to the papers and photos.”
Pre-war photographs of
George Mandl and his sister Anna Mandl Rubner
Credits: Text and page design copyrighted © 2010 by Helene Kenvin. Photographs copyrighted © 2010 by Alan Mandl. Page created by Helene Kenvin. All rights reserved.