• Born in Budapest, Hungary in 1933.
  • Family business sold yard goods for custom suits.
  • Agnes had two aunts who had immigrated to Chicago.
  • The Schwartz family had immigration papers ready before the war but Agnes father said: “Life is good in Hungary” so the family remained in Budapest.
  • Agnes had a wonderful childhood until March of 1944 when Nazis invaded Hungary.
  • In June, 1944, family forced to move into “Jewish designated buildings” in Budapest.
  • Conditions were crowded and unsanitary. Mass deportations of Hungarian Jews began.
  • In July, 1944, the Arrow Cross party took control of Hungary.
  • Agnes’ father taken by train to unknown camp.
  • On route, the Germans needed a Hungarian translator and took him off the train to help translate.
  • Mother was deported to Bergen Belsen concentration camp
  • Hungarian authorities  ordered all Hungarian Jews to concentrate in cities. Agnes’ grandparents forced to move to ghetto in Budapest.
  • At age 10, Agnes was given to her Hungarian Christian housekeeper, Julia, for safekeeping. Julia risked her life and raised Agnes as her niece.
  • Agnes attended Catholic school, always afraid that someone would discover her true identity.
  • Agnes, with Julia’s family, forced to live in underground due to the allied bombing of Hungary at the end of World War II.
  • Father was hidden by Raoul Wallenberg in a “safe house” in Budapest.
  • Liberated in Budapest by Russian troops in January, 1945.
  • Reunited with her father and together they returned to apartment to wait for return of other relatives.
  • Soon discover that Agnes’ aunt, uncle and grandmother were shot and killed by the Arrow Cross near the Danube River with 20,000 other Jews in the winter of 1944. Their bodies were thrown into the river.
  • Someone who returned from Bergen Belsen told them that Agnes’ mother had been killed there.
  • Agnes and her father came to the U.S. in January, 1947.