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Guide to the Dezso Karczag Papers
Mss 58  
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The collection contains the handwritten autobiography by Dezso Karczag [Dennis G. Karzag], co-founder of Santa Barbara-based Direct Relief International, along with supporting correspondence, articles, clippings, documents, photographs, and reports, ca. 1920s-1991.
Dezso Karczag [Dennis G. Karzag], was born in Ersekujvar, Hungary in 1904 and moved in 1911 to Vienna, where he became an Austrian citizen and attended medical school at the University of Vienna. He moved to France in 1929 and left Europe at the beginning of World War II, settling with his business partner, William Zimdin, in Santa Barbara in 1940. Karczag and Zimdin began sending clothes, food, and medical supplies to post-war Europe in 1945. In 1948 they formed a non-profit tax-exempt organization called the William Zimdin Foundation. Zimdin died in 1951, leaving $900,000 to the yet unnamed Direct Relief, and named Karczag as the executor of his estate. In the following years, Karczak mounted major drives to send supplies to the needy in Middle and Eastern Europe. By the early 1960s, Direct Relief International (DRI) began to focus on shipping medicine and medical supplies abroad, as well as supporting victims of natural disasters in the U.S. and the homeless in Santa Barbara. Karczag, who remained active in DRI efforts almost until his final days, died in Santa Barbara on May 28, 2000.
0.6 linear feet (1 document box and 1 half-size document box)
Copyright has not been assigned to the Department of Special Collections, UCSB. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Head of Special Collections. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Department of Special Collections as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which also must be obtained.