Taking time off from a busy routine as head of the foreign book department of Tutin's Book Store in the Square, Paul Mueller, a former book salesman in Vienna, yesterday told the interesting story of his flight after Nazi occupation, and of his new start in life.
Upon his father's death in 1924, Mueller took over the family book store and ran it successfully until the fateful day of March 13, 1937, when Adolf Hitler's legions invaded Vienna. On March 14 the Nazis were in Mueller's store, as in all other book stores of Vienna, confiscating books of Jewish origin, and plastering swastikas on the outside.
Mueller was soon afterwards put into concentration camp. His wife attempted to run the store during his absence despite frequent interruptions by the Nazis. Released after eight months, Mueller resolved to come to what he calls the "land of freedom."
Selecting a name which corresponded to the maiden name of his wife from a New York telephone book, Mueller dispatched a letter which he hoped would, and which did, bring the affidavit necessary for U.S. entry from an unknown benefactor.
Mueller, delighted with his new position and his life in Cambridge, says, "I feel that I am in the heart of the American cultural center." His work in Tutin's brings him into contact with the former stock of the Schoenof Book Company, probably the most comprehensive collection of foreign books in the U.S.
In order to bring his wife and daughter to America and "to a new chance for liberty and happiness," Mueller found it necessary to leave behind 40,000 books in Vienna and the business into which he and his father had put so much effort.