Document Type

Oral History

Publication Date



Copyright Steve Hochstadt. This transcript is provided for individual research purposes only; for all other uses, including publication, reproduction and quotation beyond fair use, permission must be obtained in writing from: Steve Hochstadt, c/o The Edmund S. Muskie Archives and Special Collections Library, Bates College, 70 Campus Avenue, Lewiston, Maine 04240-6018.

Scope and Content Note

Ruth (Wendriner) Sumner was born in Silesia and grew up in Bobrek and then Beuthen. When she was six, her mother was killed by an intruder to their home. Her father owned a bar, but sold the business and retired to Beuthen. On Kristallnacht, her father's brother was arrested and killed at Buchenwald. Her father and she then sailed to Shanghai on the "SS Hakuna Maru" in January 1939; shortly afterward, her sister left for the United States.