Cover image for Lucky victim : an ordinary life in extraordinary times, 1933-1946
Lucky victim : an ordinary life in extraordinary times, 1933-1946
Schmitt, Hans A.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Baton Rouge : Louisiana State University Press, [1989]

Physical Description:
254 pages, 8 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations ; 24 cm
Reading Level:
1260 Lexile.
Personal Subject:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
E184.G3 S297 1989 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

On Order



The author, an historian, looks back on his life and the circumstances that allowed him to escape from Nazi Germany.

Reviews 2

Publisher's Weekly Review

In a genteel memoir of limited appeal, the author, a professor at the University of Virginia, describes his exile from Germany as a teenager during Hitler's early years in power and his gradual absorption into American society. For safety, his parents (Jewish mother, gentile father) sent him to Holland, then England, finally to the U.S. Schmitt attended Washington and Lee University and the University of Chicago, and returned to Germany during WW II as an American citizen wearing the uniform of the U.S. Army. His wartime duties consisted mainly of interrogating German POWs (``I vacillated between hostility and pity''), and he spent most of his free time searching for members of his family. His father had died in the war, but Schmitt was reunited with his mother and brother, and brought them to the U.S. after the war. Photos. (Oct.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

Schmitt (history, Univ. of Virginia) recalls his teenage years and those of early adulthood when his parents spirited him out of Nazi Germany to attend schools in Holland and England. Eventually he came to the United States, went to college, became a citizen, and served in World War II. Schmitt's odyssey is frequently quite interesting, though the need to commit it to print is somewhat bewildering. There are, however, nuggets of information on wartime conditions, on his Americanization, and on European anti-Semitism (his mother was Jewish). The author is a sensitive and intelligent man whose self-described ``ordinary life'' might make better table conversation than a book.-- Mark R. Yerburgh, Trinity Coll. Lib., Burlington, Vt. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Table of Contents

I My Ancestors, Both Rich And Poorp. 1
Ii January 30,1933p. 33
Iii the First Months of The Nazi Erap. 41
Iv How I Fled Nazi Germanyp. 64
V the School in the Manorp. 82
Vi Growing Up in Eerdep. 105
Vii Tolerated, but Not Wanted: My Year In Englandp. 127
Viii Beginnings of An American Educationp. 149
Ix My American Education Continuedp. 175
X My Return to Europep. 196
Xi Overdue Reunionsp. 224
Epiloguep. 242