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Sigmund S. Holocaust testimony (HVT-3103) interviewed by Robert Krell

Oral History | Fortunoff Collection ID: HVT-3103

Videotape testimony of Sigmund S., who was born in Toruń, Poland, the son of a non-Jewish military officer. He recalls moving to Nowy Targ when his father was decommissoned due to his opposition to the Pilsudski regime; Catholic antisemitism; moving to Katowice; attending gymnasium, then military school; mobilization when Germany invaded; arrest in place of his father as a Polish intelligentsia; imprisonment in Tarnów; transfer on the first transport to Auschwitz (his number was eighty-eight); obtaining a privileged job as a carpenter; testing of the first gas chamber on Russian POWs; assisting his cousin when he was sick; assignment to the fire brigade; visiting Birkenau; the increase in transports and killings in spring 1944; open pit burning of bodies due to limits of the crematoria; the October prisoner uprising; transfer to Sachsenhausen in November; liberation in May 1945; traveling the world; and emigration to Canada. Mr. S. discusses the privileged position of Poles in Auschwitz; admiration for those in the October uprising; receiving parcels and mail; believing his wife and children cannot understand him; feeling a connection and a debt to Jews; disappointment in his children's lack of interest; and hopes that the church will apologize for their complicity.

Author/Creator
S., Sigmund, 1923-
Published
Vancouver, B.C. : Vancouver Holocaust Centre Society, 1992
Interview Date
May 8, 1992.
Language
English
Copies
2 copies: 3/4 in. dub; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
Cite As
Sigmund S. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-3103). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.