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Exiled German-speaking intellectuals in Southern California: Oscar and Florence Homolka

During the 1930s and 1940s, many German Jews and intellectuals fled Nazi Germany. This LibGuide provides information about German-speaking intellectuals who found refuge in Southern California

  Oscar (1898-1978) & Florence Homolka (1911-1962)

Oscar Homolka's years in Southern California: 1937-1978.


Florence Homolka's years in Southern California: 1937-1962.


Oscar Homolka was an Austrian character actor who worked in the Berlin theater and film world. He was best known for his characterization of spies and villians. He worked first for Max Reinhardt's theater and began his film career in the mid 1920s. In 1935 he emigrated voluntarily to Paris and England, leaving two years later for the United States. His career in Hollywood movies was quite successful; a sampling of his films are listed here: Ebb Tide (1937), Mission to Moscow (1943), The Seven Year Itch (1955), and War and Peace (1956). Homolka also appeared in several televison shows.

His wife, Florence (Meyer) Homolka, was the eldest daughter of Eugene (1875-1959), editor of the Washington Post, and Agnes E. Meyer (1887-1970). Agnes Meyer became acquainted with Thomas Mann in 1937; they became good friends and Meyer helped to translate some of Mann's writings. Florence Homolka worked as a photographer and took many portraits of Marta and Lion Feuchtwanger.

The Homolkas lived at 10788 Bellagio Road in Bel-Air and 914 Corsica Drive in Pacific Palisades.




The New Encyclopaedia Britannica. 15th edition. Chicago: Encyclopaedia Britannica, 1995.

Thomas Mann. Tagebücher 1940-1943. Edited by Peter de Mendelssohn. Frankfurt: Fischer, 1982.

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Michaela Ullmann
Michaela Ullmann Head, Instruction & Assessment