18 Facts About Carl Lutz


Carl Lutz served as the Swiss Vice-Consul in Budapest, Hungary, from 1942 until the end of World War II.


Carl Lutz is credited with saving over 62,000 Jews during the Second World War in a very large rescue operation.


Carl Lutz was awarded the title of Righteous Among the Nations by Yad Vashem.


Carl Lutz immigrated in 1913 at the age of 18 to the United States, where he lived and worked for more than 20 years.


In 1920, Carl Lutz found a job in the Swiss consular corps at the Swiss Legation in Washington, DC He continued his education there at George Washington University, where he received a bachelor's degree in 1924.


In 1926, Carl Lutz was appointed as chancellor at the Swiss Consulate in Philadelphia, United States.


Carl Lutz next was assigned to the Swiss Consulate in St Louis, and served in total from 1926 to 1934 in the two cities.


Carl Lutz left the United States after more than 20 years.


Carl Lutz was assigned in January 1935 as vice-consul to the Swiss Consulate General in Jaffa, in what was then Mandatory Palestine.


Carl Lutz issued Swiss safe-conduct documents that enabled almost 10,000 Hungarian Jewish children to emigrate, and saved over 62,000 Jews.


Carl Lutz negotiated a special deal with the Hungarian government and the Nazis.


Carl Lutz gained permission to issue protective letters to 8,000 Hungarian Jews for emigration to Palestine.


Carl Lutz deliberately used his permission for 8,000 as applying to families rather than individuals, and proceeded to issue tens of thousands of additional protective letters, all of them bearing a number between one and 8,000.


Carl Lutz set up some 76 "safe houses" around Budapest, declaring them annexes of the Swiss legation and thus off-limits to Hungarian forces or Nazi soldiers.


One day, in front of the fascist Arrow Cross Party militiamen while they fired at Jews, Lutz jumped in the Danube River to save a bleeding Jewish woman along the quay that today bears his name in Budapest.


Thanks to his diplomatic skills, Carl Lutz succeeded in persuading Hungarian and Nazi German officials, among them Adolf Eichmann, to tolerate, at least in part, his formal protection of Hungarian Jews.


Carl Lutz saved the lives of tens of thousands of people.


Many years later, in 1958, as part of Swiss national rethinking of the war years, Carl Lutz was "rehabilitated" in terms of public reputation, and his achievements were honored.