1902 - 1919
Chaim Gross is born in the Galician village of Wolowa, Galicia, East Austria, tenth child of Moses Gross, lumber merchant, and wife, Leah (Sperber).
Family moves to Kolomyia.
Brother Naftoli Gross (1896-1956) arrives in New York City.
Russian forces invade Austrian Galicia as World War I begins. The Gross family flees from Kolomyia, which is near the front lines. By March of 1915 the Russian army controls the entire province of Galicia. The Grosses return to Kolomyia and Chaim witnesses his parents being beaten and the pillage of the city.
After escaping from Kolomyia, is briefly conscripted by the Austrian army with brother Avrom-Leib as a laborer. They later escape and rejoin their family. The family are refugees with thousands of others.
Word War I ends.
In 1919 Gross goes to Vienna, then Budapest, where he wins a scholarship to art school. In Budapest Gross studies with Bela Uitz. In 1920 the new Romanian government orders all foreigners deported. Imprisoned and then deported to Austria. Attends Kunstgewerbeschule (now known as the University of Applied Art) in Vienna.