The Story of Andrej Horn

A Case Study in the Microhistory of the Holocaust




Holocaust, Slovakia, Jozef Tiso, Jewish Code, aryanization, exemptions, petitions


This article examines the fate of Andrej Horn, a thirty-seven-year-old Jewish businessman from Veľká Bytča, Slovakia, who on 21 February 1942 petitioned Slovakia’s President Jozef Tiso for an exemption from antisemitic legislation. It discusses how entreaties reflect Jewish victimisation during the Holocaust and some of the complex social dynamics and governmental processes that contributed to the deportation of nearly 58,000 Jews under the auspices of the Slovak authorities in 1942. Using a victim-centric, microhistorical approach, the communications about Andrej Horn in all of the known files in Slovak archives were placed in chronological order in order to trace his experiences during the Holocaust within their historical context. This method displays how some Jews in Slovakia attempted to navigate their precarious predicament, various aspects of minority (Jewish)-majority (Christian) interactions, and some of the local-level persecutory dynamics that contributed to the tragic denouement of the Holocaust in Slovakia.

Author Biography

  • Madeline Vadkerty, Gratz College

    Madeline Vadkerty is pursuing her PhD in Holocaust and Genocide Studies at Gratz College (Philadelphia, USA) as a Samuel P. Mandell Fellow. She is a former employee of the US Holocaust Memorial Museum (USHMM) in Washington, DC, and Advocates for Survivors of Torture and Trauma (ASTT) in Baltimore, Maryland. Originally from the US, she currently lives in Bratislava, Slovakia, where she volunteers at the Holocaust Documentation Centre. She has conducted numerous research and educational projects to inform public and student audiences about Slovak Holocaust history. Her book, Your Honor Mr. President: Letters to Jozef Tiso (in Slovak), won two literary awards from the Panta Rhei Literary Committee and the Independent Association of Slovak Writers, and was also named Martinus’ Book of the Year in 2020. Madeline’s dissertation focuses on entreaties written to Slovak President Jozef Tiso about the “Jewish question” between 1939 and 1944.





How to Cite

“The Story of Andrej Horn: A Case Study in the Microhistory of the Holocaust”. 2023. S: I.M.O.N. Shoah: Intervention. Methods. Documentation. 10 (3): 26-45.