Fritz Gluckstein was a Mischling who was detained at Rosenstrasse 2-4. On his sixteenth birthday, he and his Jewish father were interrogated by SS officers who were determining their lineage and status as Jews. They were eventually released and told to report to a factory job. He and his father worked for the air force for a short time before a morning that they were taken to be interrogated once again. An SS officer went to their factory ordering them out onto trucks. These trucks took them to a closed dance hall, where they were interviewed. Thanks to a connection with someone on the inside, they were released around 8 PM. The next morning Fritz went home, and his father had been picked up to another factory. His mother had been away, so Fritz sent a telegram saying “It would be wise if you came back soon”.
At a routine Ration card pickup, Fritz was identified as Jewish by the yellow star of David he adorned, detained, and sent to Rosentstrasse 2-4. The detained were put in rooms, each holding 15 to 20 people, with no mattresses to sleep on and insufficient bathroom facilities. After a week of holding, they were released. When Fritz went downstairs, he was surprised to meet his father. They had to wait until employees of the Jewish community filled out the release slips and then they had to be signed by the commandant, Sergeant Snyder. In retrospect, Fritz stated “I still remember my father walking ahead of me and he looked at us and then he sneered, “A judge you have been? Then you certainly have ruined the lives of many people.”
When Fritz and his father stepped out, they realized they had no idea why they were released- their rooms did not have windows facing the front where the protests were carried out. To their surprise, they learned that Aryan wives and mothers had demanded the release of their Jewish partners and children.
Written by Isabella Lopez & Sheighlin Hagerty