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Benjamin J. Holocaust testimony (HVT-1274) interviewed by Lawrence L. Langer,

Oral History | Fortunoff Collection ID: HVT-1274

Videotape testimony of Benjamin J., who was born in Dobra, Poland in 1919, the youngest of three children. He recalls antisemitic harassment; attending one year of dental school; German invasion; ghettoization; assistance from a few Polish friends; deportation with his father in 1941 to Poznań; slave labor for Hoch und Tiefbau; receiving extra food from a Polish woman who also smuggled mail to him; a severe beating for smuggling bread; transfer with his father in 1943 to a nearby camp; public executions; assignment to the hospital as a dentist and medical assistant; learning his mother and sister had been deported; transfer with his father in August 1943 to Auschwitz/Birkenau, then shortly thereafter to Myslowice (Fürstengrube); encounters with Otto Moll, whom he later treated when he was the camp dentist; reunion with his brother; his father's death; a death march with his brother in January 1945 to Gleiwitz; train transfer to Buchenwald, then Dora; slave labor in a rocket factory; Folke Bernadotte, with the Swedish Red Cross, taking western European prisoners to Sweden in May 1945 (he attempted to go as French citizen, but failed); transfer to Lübeck; surviving the sinking of the Cap Arcona; liberation by British troops; traveling with his brother to Frankfurt; refusing to live in a displaced persons camp; moving to Lüdenscheid; locating relatives in the United States through HIAS; and joining them in 1949. Mr. J. discusses his state of mind, the social order, and many details of camp life; learning his mother and sister had been killed at Chelmno; recently visiting his home and camp sites in Poland and Germany; not discussing his experiences until recently; and speaking to students.

Author/Creator
J., Benjamin, 1919-
Published
Brookline, Mass :. : Brookline Holocaust Memorial Committee, 1988
Interview Date
March 16, May 24, June 9, and June 23, 1988.
Locale
Poland
Dobra (Poland)
Lübeck (Germany)
Frankfurt am Main (Germany)
Lüdenscheid (Germany)
Language
English
Copies
5 copies: 3/4 in. master; 3/4 in. dub; Betacam SP restoration master; Betacam SP restoration submaster; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
Cite As
Benjamin J. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-1274). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.