The Holocaust was a dark time in world history. Jews, Gypsies, Homosexuals and more were killed and cremated by the hands of the Nazis. There were a few, however, that fought the views of Adolf Hitler and attempted to save some of the victims of his cruelty. One of the greatest of these is Oskar Schindler. Oskar Schindler has been described as a crook, an alcoholic, and an insatiable womanizer. All of this may very well be true, but this factory owner was a hero to many Jewish men, women, and children. When those Jews were shipped to the concentration camp Plazsow, he would make the famed Schindler's list. This list was a promise, a promise to those who were on it, that they would not die at the hands of the Nazis. Since he was known to love the finer things in life, no one knows exactly why he risked his own life and spent his entire fortune to save at least 1,100 Jews through the course of World War II.
On April 28, 1908 in the industrial city of Zwittau, Austria Hungary Oskar Schindler was born to his parents Hans and Louisa. His father Hans owned a farm machinery company, and from this the family prospered. They lived in a middle class neighborhood in a large two-story home surrounded by beautiful gardens. He, along with his younger sister Elfriede and their Jewish neighbors, attended a German grammar school. His father enrolled Oskar in science courses so he could become an engineer and expected him to eventually take over the family business.
As a teenager, he became interested in motorcycles. As a gift, his father purchased him a fire-red, Italian motorcycle. He sped everywhere on it and became the envy of his classmates. He soon began racing motorcycles, for many of the local factory owners had racing teams. He raced for his father's company and his father bought him another motorcycle. It too was Italian, and was faster and less common than the other.Eventually he had to give up the excitement and thrill of the motorcycle races and spend more time learning the details of the family business.
On a business trip with his father he visited the farming village of Alt-Molstein in the Bohemian countryside. They stopped at the Pelzl farm where he became infatuated with the farmer's daughter Emilie. She was beautiful, educated, and was very religious just like his mother, Louisa.
With talk of marriage, neither father was very pleased. However Herr Pelzl, Emilie's father, reluctantly agreed and promised Oskar a dowry of one hundred thousand Czech crowns and the couple were married in March. 1928 only six months after they first met.
Schindler worked in his family business until he one day accepted a job as a sales manager in Czechoslovakia. He soon joined the Nazi Party and began working as a spy for the Germans.In 1939 he was arrested by the Czechs and was condemned to death. However, his life was saved when the Nazis soon took over Czechoslovakia.
Also in 1939, the Germans invaded Poland and Word War II began....