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19.2.1939, Hauptplatz

Deep-seated anti-Semitism is revealed during the carnival procession: the malicious caricaturing of Jews by dressed-up inhabitants of Linz attracts particular applause.

The carnival procession in 1939 with the motto “Linz is dancing and laughing again” was intended to be a “celebration for the people” as defined by the National Socialists. The motifs were fatherland, military and foreigners. The foreigners depicted were those in the “Jewish cart of the provincial theatre” with the motto “what has died out revives”, “Negermusik” [negro music], people dressed as “savages”, and a rag and bone cart (with old rubbish and effigies representing Jews). The duo “Sepp and Ebi” entertained the public “with one Jewish rhyming couplet after another. Thousands doubled up with laughter”.

The Tages-Post newspaper of Linz described the carnival procession as follows: “A group of colourful fools, big and small, fat and thin but all of them torn and damaged with turned-up noses, a colourful band of fools goes by. … Boys march after them and turn their sprays from side to side, directing them at the vermin … what follows now is a rich collection of political caricatures. The conscience worm, VF figures [Vaterländische Front: Patriotic Front (Austro-fascist)], HW leaders [Heimwehr: Austro-fascist paramilitary force] with well-known faces … country boys, convicts, bent noses in kaftans and finally in a cart and following it, the last of the Jews, in chains”.

At this point in time there were only 100 “racially Jewish" people living in Linz, around half of them practicing Jews. In 1934 there were 671 practicing Jews in Linz.