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Victor B. Holocaust testimony (HVT-3207) interviewed by Josette Zarka and Michèle Ganem,

Oral History | Digitized | Fortunoff Collection ID: HVT-3207

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    Videotape testimony of Victor B., who was born in Rēzekne, Russia (presently Latvia) in 1915. He describes his assimilated family; his and his older brother's communist militancy; his secular “bar mitzvah”; arrest in 1936 for political activities; eight months imprisonment in Rīga; illegally traveling to Paris using false papers; completing law school; enlisting in the Foreign Legion in September 1939; being stationed in Le Barcares in 1940; attending officer training school; demobilization in Aix-en-Provence; living there, then in Marseille; forming a business as a front for Resistance activities; arrest in early 1944; two months imprisonment in Marseille; transfer to Drancy, Auschwitz/Birkenau, then a day later to Jawischowitz; slave labor in coal mines; receiving extra food from Polish civilian workers; a death march and train transfer to Buchenwald in January 1945; slave labor digging tunnels; another death march; liberation by French troops; hospitalization; and repatriation to Marseille. Mr. B. discusses arrival at Auschwitz/Birkenau as falling into another world that cannot be described; the camp hierarchy; focusing on food to the exclusion of all else; his priority to just survive one more day; feeling his experiences happened to someone else; his brother's “disappearance” during Soviet purges in the mid-1930s; a last letter from his parents; and sharing his story with his children and grandchildren. He shows photographs and documments.
    B., Victor, 1915-
    Paris, France : Témoignages pour mémoire, 1995
    Interview Date
    March 20, 1995.
    Rēzekne (Latvia)
    Rīga (Latvia)
    Paris (France)
    Le Barcarès (France)
    Aix-en-Provence (France)
    Marseille (France)
    Cite As
    Victor B. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-3207). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.
    Other Authors/Editors
    Zarka, Josette, interviewer.
    Ganem, Michèle, interviewer.
    This testimony is in French.

    Physical Details

    2 copies: 3/4 in. dub; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
    Physical Description
    1 videorecording (2 hr., 25 min.) : col

    Keywords & Subjects

    Subjects (Local Yale)
    False papers.
    Postwar experiences.
    Postwar effects.
    Holocaust survivors. Video tapes. Men. Holocaust, Jewish (1939-1945)--Personal narratives. World War, 1939-1945--Personal narratives, Jewish. Bar mitzvah. Jews--Migrations. Jewish refugees. World War, 1939-1945--Participation, French. World War, 1939-1945--Participation, Jewish. World War, 1939-1945--Underground movements--France. World War, 1939-1945--Prisoners and prisons, French. Concentration camps--Psychological aspects. Concentration camps--Sociological aspects. Forced labor. Death marches. Russia. Rēzekne (Latvia) Rīga (Latvia) Paris (France) Le Barcarès (France) Aix-en-Provence (France) Marseille (France) Oral histories (document genres) B., Victor,--1915- Drancy (Concentration camp) Birkenau (Concentration camp) Auschwitz (Concentration camp) Jawischowitz (Concentration camp) Buchenwald (Concentration camp)

    Administrative Notes

    Link to Yale University Library Catalog:
    Record last modified:
    2018-05-29 11:47:00
    This page:

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