Irmgard K. Holocaust testimony (HVT-3393) interviewed by Cathy S. Gelbin and Angela Reinhard
- Potsdam, Germany : Moses Mendelssohn Zentrum für europäisch-jüdische Studien, Universität Potsdam, 1995
- Interview Date
- August 18, 1995.
- 2 copies: Betacam SP dub; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
- Cite As
- Irmgard K. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-3393). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.
Videotape testimony of Irmgard K., who was born in Breslau (presently Wrocław, Poland), Germany in 1915, the youngest of five children of a Jewish father and Christian mother. She recounts attending synagogue and learning Hebrew; her father's death in 1924; antisemitic harassment; active participation in Social Democratic Party youth groups; her siblings' emigration to France in the early 1930s; her mother joining them; several arrests for anti-Nazi activities; engagement to a non-Jew; the Nuremberg laws prohibition against their marriage; her fiancé's arrest for anti-Nazi activities; one brother's death in the Spanish Civil War, and a sister's death from illness; compulsory wearing of the star in spite of not thinking of herself as a Jew; her fiancé's military draft; deportation to Auschwitz/Birkenau; removing her star en route, which resulted in being categorized as a German political prisoner; slave labor sewing and transplanting trees; hospitalization for typhus; assistance from a Czech prisoner who saved many lives and allowed her to remain there to work; helping a sick French prisoner survive; assignment to the hospital kitchen; observing the drowning of infants after women gave birth; asking Dr. Werner Rhode to save her pregnant friend from death (he did); volunteering for a transport of half-Jews to Ravensbrück; living in France for two years after the war; and returning to Germany two years later to marry her fiancé. Ms. K. discusses not fearing death in the camps, and identifying a prisoner official who had been convicted at Nuremberg but fled. She shows photographs and documents.