Simon B. Holocaust testimony (HVT-3443) interviewed by Henri Borlant and Rachel Wieviorka
- Paris, France : Témoignages pour mémoire, 1996
- Interview Date
- February 2, 1996.
- 2 copies: 3/4 in. dub; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
- Cite As
- Simon B. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-3443). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.
Videotape testimony of Simon B., who was born in the Soviet Union (now Estonia) in 1920. He recounts his family's emigration to France in 1922; growing up in Courbevoie; his bar mitzvah; his mother's death in 1934; military draft in 1940; German invasion; demobilization; staying in a youth camp near Cluny for eight months; moving to Paris; arrest in August 1942; internment in Drancy; transfer to Pithiviers, Beaune-la-Rolande, then back to Drancy; deportation to Auschwitz/Birkenau in September 1942; hospitalization in December; assistance from a non-Jewish nurse; a privileged assignment in the laundry; transfer to Golleschau; slave labor in a cement factory; return to Auschwitz, transfer to another camp, then back to Birkenau; becoming an assistant kapo; transfer to Warsaw; slave labor clearing ghetto rubble; collecting and burning corpses daily, including executed Polish prisoners from Pawiak prison; Polish civilians throwing stones at them; a public hanging; a death march to Kutno, then train transport to Dachau in July 1944; transfer to Waldlager, then Mühldorf; his privileged kitchen position; liberation by United States troops in April 1945; transport to Feldafing; repatriation via Mulhouse to Hotel Lutetia in Paris; living in Aix-en-Provence, then in Tunis for two years; returning to Paris; and continuing contact with camp friends (he names many). Mr. B. discusses relations among prisoner groups; the importance of luck to his survival; and changing his perspective on life due to his experiences.