Timeline

TIMELINE
  • February 9, 1928
  • George Brady is born in Czechoslovakia, to Karel and Marketa Brady.
  • May 16, 1931
  • Hana is born and joins her family in the town of Nove Mesto na Morave, a town of 3500, then known for making skis.
  • 1928 — 1938
  • Six days a week the Brady family works at their general store. George and Hana’s job is to make sure the shelves are stocked at all times. Sundays are family time. In the winter, they ski and skate together, while in the summer they have picnics with extended family members.
  • January 1933
  • Hitler is named German Chancellor.
  • March 1933
  • Dachau, the first concentration camp, is established in Germany.
  • April 1933
  • The Nazi boycotts against the Jewish population begins.
  • September 1935
  • The anti-Semitic Nuremberg Laws are passed in Reichstag, the German Parliament Building. As a result, Jewish people lose their citizenship and civil rights in Germany.
  • July 1937
  • Buchenwald concentration camp opens in Weimar, Germany.
  • March 1938
  • The anti-Semitic laws extend to Austria as Hitler takes the country.
  • Fall 1938
  • After the Munich Agreement, Hitler’s forces annexed the border regions of Czechoslovakia.
  • November 1938
  • On November 9, 1938 is the Kristallnacht (Night of Broken Glass). This was the anti-Semitic riots and destruction of Jewish institutions in both Germany and Austria. As a result, 26,000 Jews were sent to concentration camps and all Jewish children are expelled from schools.
  • New Year’s 1938
  • George and Hana eavesdrop on their parents and neighbours listening to the news on their father’s radio. At the end of the news broadcast the adults discuss the Nazis and their treatment of the Jewish population.
  • March 15, 1939
  • The Nazis march into Czechoslovakia and declare the Jewish people evil and a bad influence; from now on the Brady family has to live by different rules. Jewish people were only allowed to leave their homes at certain hours of the day due to travel restrictions. This meant no more visits with family members outside of town. Jewish people are restricted to shopping at a few stores at certain hours of the day. The Bradys were forced to tell the Nazis about everything they owned – art, jewellery, bankbooks. The Nazis confiscated their father’s radio.
  • September 1939
  • Germany invades Poland on September 1, 1939 and the Nazis take over the free city of Danzig. As a result, Britain and France give Hitler an ultimatum. When he ignores them, they declare war on September 3, 1939.
  • 1940
  • As the war continues, Einsatzgruppen (mobile killing squads) follow the German army into conquered lands, rounding up Jews and other “undesirables.”
  • Autumn 1940
  • Nazis declare that Jewish children can not attend school. Therefore, Hana’s parents hire a young woman from the next town to tutor Hana and an old refugee professor to teach George. Hana and George can no longer see their friends.
  • Spring 1941
  • Hana and George’s mother, Marketa Brady, is arrested by the Gestapo (Hitler’s secret police) and transported to Ravensbrück (a women’s concentration camp).
  • Autumn 1941
  • George and Hana’s father, Karel Brady, comes home with three squares of cloth, each with the Star of David on them. He cuts the stars out and tells his children that they must pin the stars to their clothes whenever they leave the house.
  • September 1941
  • Karel is taken away by the Gestapo along with all of the other adult Jewish men in Nove Mesto, leaving Hana and her brother alone. Uncle Ludvik and Aunt Heda take George and Hana to live with them.
  • December 1941
  • On December 7, 1941, the Japanese attack Pearl Harbor and as a result, the U.S. and Britain declare war on Japan. Germany and Italy declare war on the U.S.
  • January 1942
  • Mass killings start to be carried out in the Auschwitz, the concentration camp, using Zyklon-B poison.
  • April 1942
  • Hana and George receive an order informing them to report to the deportation center in Trebic on May 14, 1942.
  • May 16, 1942
  • Hana celebrates her 11th birthday on the way to the concentration camp, Theresienstadt (known in Czech as Terezin). During the war 140,000 people were sent to Theresienstadt, and of those 15,000 were children. These children eventually passed through to camps like Auschwitz and less than 300 survived.
  • May 18, 1942
  • Hana and George arrive at Theresienstadt, where they are separated. George is sent to the boys’ barracks and Hana to the girls’ barracks located in former schools.
  • July 3, 1942
  • George and Hana’s Grandmother, Emma arrives at Theresienstadt. Malnourished and without medical care, she passes away only three months later from illness.
  • July 1942
  • 100,000 Jews from Warsaw Ghetto are deported to Treblinka death camp.
  • July 14, 1942
  • George and Hana’s father, Karel, is sent from the Iglau Gestapo prison to Cejl prison in Brno and then ultimately to Auschwitz where he is killed, on July 14, 1942.
  • October 1942
  • George and Hana’s mother, Marketa, is sent from Ravensbruck to Auschwitz and is killed on October 29th, 1942.
  • 1942
  • The Bauhaus artist, Friedl Dicker-Brandeisova, is deported to Theresienstadt were she taught art to hundreds of children. One of these children is Hana Brady.
  • 1942 – 1943
  • Hana lives in Kinderheim L410, and George in Kinderheim L417; housing converted from a former school house.
  • May/June 1944
  • 476,000 Hungarian Jews are sent to Auschwitz.
  • June 6, 1944
  • D-day — The Allies launch Normandy invasion against the Axis Powers. Allied countries include; US., Britain, USSR, Australia, Canada, China, New Zealand and auxiliary armies from occupied countries.
  • Axis powers include: Germany, Italy and Japan.
  • July 1944
  • The Soviet Army liberates Majdanek death camp in Poland.
  • September 1944
  • George is sent to Auschwitz on the first of ten transports from Terezin to Auschwitz.
  • October 23, 1944
  • Hana is sent to Auschwitz on the second last transport to leave Terezin for Auschwitz. Hana is promptly sent to the gas chamber shortly after she arrives in Auschwitz. She is never reunited with her brother, George.
  • October 1944
  • Friedl Dicker- Brandeisova dies in Auschwitz.
  • November 1944
  • As the Allies approach, the Nazis try to hide evidence of their death camps, by moving people closer to the center of Germany.
  • January 1945
  • Auschwitz is liberated and George who works in a satellite camp of Auschwitz escapes during a death march towards Germany. He is 17 years old.
  • May 1945
  • Admiral Doenitz takes command of Germany after Hitler’s suicide is announced on May 1, 1945. Shortly after, Berlin surrenders to the Allies and on May 7, 1945 Germany agrees to an unconditional surrender terms in Rheims, France.
  • Allies declare V-E Day on May 8, 1945.
  • The Americans drop the A-bomb on Japan on August 6 and 9, 1945. As a result, Japan agrees to surrender on August 14, 1945. V-J Day is declared when the Japanese sign surrender terms aboard battleship Missouri on September 2, 1945.
  • April 1945
  • Americans liberate Buchenwald concentration camp in Weimar, Germany and the British liberate the Bergen-Belsen camps in Germany.
  • May 1945
  • After traveling by foot, by train, and by hitchhiking through Poland, Russia and Hungary, George makes it back to Nove Mesto, where he is reunited with his Uncle Ludvik and Aunt Heda. His Aunt and Uncle are saddened to tell him that his mother and father both died in Auschwitz. When he asks about his sister, all they can tell him is that she was sent to Auschwitz.
  • Months later
  • George runs into a friend of Hana’s from Terezin. She tells him that Hana was sent to Auschwitz in October 1944 and was promptly killed the day she arrived.
  • 1945
  • At the age of 17, George enrolls in the Commercial Academy in Prague, graduating in 1949.
  • November 1945 to October 1946
  • Nuremberg War Crimes Trial. Here Nazi officers, men and members of the Nazi Party who were responsible among other things for the massacre of the 6 million Jews who died during the Holocaust, 1.6 million of which were children, are put on trial. When convicted, these men are either executed or imprisoned for their crimes.
  • 1949
  • George escapes from Czechoslovakia to Austria where he lives until he emigrates to Canada.
  • 1951
  • George moves to Toronto, Canada and in 1954 starts a plumbing business with another Holocaust survivor. He soon marries and has three sons and much later a daughter.
  • Fumiko
  • 1998
  • Fumiko begins work at the Tokyo Holocaust Center as a coordinator. The Tokyo Holocaust Center is dedicated to educating children about the Holocaust and teaching them tolerance and compassion.
  • Winter 2000
  • Fumiko visits Auschwitz Museum. She asks if the Museum could loan her some objects that belonged to children who lived in the concentration camp.
  • March 2000
  • Fumiko receives Hana’s suitcase, along with a child’s sock & shoe, a child’s sweater, and a can of Zyklon B poisonous gas from the Auschwitz Museum.
  • Fumiko writes to everyone she can think of, about Hana Brady with no success. Later, Fumiko receives a letter from Auschwitz informing her that Hana came to Auschwitz from the concentration camp the Germans called Terezin. Through extensive research, Fumiko learns that Jewish painters, musicians, and philosophers held secret classes in Terezin. Teaching children and adults there, the artists were determined to remind their students that despite the war, the world was a beautiful place and that they could add to its beauty. From these secret classes, some 4,500 children’s drawings survived the war and are held in the Jewish Museum in Prague.
  • April 2000
  • Fumiko receives photographs of Hana’s drawings from the museum.
  • Spring 2000
  • With the help of Small Wings, Fumiko opens an exhibition called “The Holocaust Seen Through Children’s Eyes”, where she display the artifacts she received from the Auschwitz Museum, the photo’s of Hana’s drawings and the poems, articles and artwork the Small Wings created.
  • June 2000
  • Inspired by the success of “The Holocaust Seen Through Children’s Eyes” exhibition, Fumiko decides to go to Terezin to search for more information about Hana Brady.
  • July 11, 2000
  • Fumiko arrives in Terezin and visits the Terezin Ghetto Museum. There she finds Hana Brady’s name in among a list of men, women and children who were imprisoned in Terezin and then transported to the east. Above Hana’s name, Fumiko notices the name George Brady, who was born three years before Hana; Fumiko is delighted to learn that he may be Hana’s brother. Fumiko also notices that all of the names on the page, except one, have a check mark beside them. The check mark indicates that they had perished during the war. There was a check mark beside everyone’s name on the list, except for George’s name.
  • Through further investigation Fumiko finds out that while in Terezin, George Brady had a bunkmate Kurt Kotouc, who also survived. Fumiko goes to the Jewish Museum in Prague, where she is helped in locating Kurt Kotouc, who tells her that he still keeps in touch with George and that he lives in Toronto, Canada.
  • August 2000
  • Fumiko sends a carefully drafted letter to George, explaining how she came across Hana’s suitcase and how Hana’s story intrigues both her and the children who visit the Tokyo Holocaust Museum. She includes copies of Hana’s drawings, and letters and drawings from the children in Small Wings.
  • August 2000
  • George receives Fumiko’s letter in Toronto.
  • September 2000
  • Fumiko receives a reply from George along with photographs of his sister, Hana and his new family in Canada.
  • January 2001
  • Fumiko travels to Canada to meet George and his family for the first time. They discuss details of Hana and George’s lives and Fumiko views many more pictures of Hana as a child.
  • The Canadian Jewish News introduces the story through an article. This article catches the attention of Karen Levine, who works for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. She interviews George and Fumiko and creates a prize-winning radio documentary for the CBC.
  • March 2001
  • George goes to Tokyo with his daughter, Lara Hana, to meet Fumiko and the Small Wings, where he is greeted with a warm welcome. There for the first time, George and Lara see the suitcase which lead Fumiko to Toronto and Hana’s surviving family.
  • 2002
  • Karen Levine writes Hana’s Suitcase which is published by Margie Wolfe at Second Story Press and eventually translated into 40 languages.
  • 2004
  • Joe Schlesinger and Jet Belgraver of the CBC film the documentary “Odyssey of Hope: Hana’s Suitcase” which appears on The Passionate Eye and goes on to win a Gemini Award.
  • 2005
  • Fumiko Ishioka is awarded an honourary doctorate from York University and Hana’s Suitcase approved for Japanese English curriculum.
  • 2006
  • Playwright Emil Sher adapts Hana’s Suitcase for staging and the play Hana’s Suitcase Onstage debuts at the Lorraine Kimsa Theatre for Young People in Toronto, following a sold-out run, the play travels across Canada.
  • 2007
  • Hana’s Suitcase Onstage opens its USA tour in St. Louis.
  • 2008
  • Larry Weinstein of Rhombus Media directs Inside Hana’s Suitcase, a docu-drama which debuts at the 2009 HotDocs Festival opening.
  • 2009
  • George Brady receives Order of Ontario.