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Hans R. Holocaust testimony (HVT-3419) interviewed by Eva Lezzi and Cathy S. Gelbin

Oral History | Fortunoff Collection ID: HVT-3419

Videotape testimony of Hans R., who was born in Berlin, Germany in 1924, the oldest of four children. He recalls attending Hebrew school; its closure due to antisemitic laws; harassment by former playmates; his parents losing their jobs; attending a Jewish trade school; brief incarceration with his father and grandfather in Sachsenhausen in 1938; fleeing to the Netherlands in 1941; returning home at his father's request; working in the Jewish cemetery, then in a factory; deportation with his family in October 1942; jumping from the train at his father's urging (he never saw his family again); returning to Berlin; resuming work illegally; deportation in June 1943 to Auschwitz/Birkenau; transfer to Buna/Monowitz; slave labor for I. G. Farben; brief hospitalization; assistance from friends; the pervasive smell of burning flesh; public hangings; a death march to Gleiwitz in January 1945; transport to Sachsenhausen, then Flossenbürg; becoming ill; being placed in an open mass grave; liberation by United States troops two days later; hospitalization in Germany until 1951; returning to Berlin; completing his education; marriage to a non-Jew; and the births of two children. He discusses repressing painful memories of the camps; his reluctance to share his experiences, even with his children; antisemitism in Germany; visits to Auschwitz and Sachsenhausen; and his belief that Hitler won the war against the Jews.

Author/Creator
R., Hans, 1924-
Published
Potsdam, Germany : Moses Mendelssohn Zentrum für europäisch-jüdische Studien, Universität Potsdam, 1996
Interview Date
February 2, 1996.
Language
German
Copies
2 copies: Betacam SP dub; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
Cite As
Hans R. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-3419). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.
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View in Yale University Library Catalog: http://hdl.handle.net/10079/bibid/4291659
Record last modified: 2011-05-05 11:39:00
This page: https://collections.ushmm.org/search/catalog/hvt4291659