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Ruzena V. Holocaust testimony (HVT-3676) interviewed by Peter Salner and Ingrid Králová

Oral History | Fortunoff Collection ID: HVT-3676

Videotape testimony of Ruzena V., who was raised in Sečovce, Czechoslovakia, one of six children. She recounts a Hlinka Guard advising her father to hide his daughters; not heeding him in order to remain together; relocation to Poprad; deportation to Auschwitz with two sisters; slave labor; obtaining a privileged position in the political department; sharing extra food with her sisters; transfer with them to Birkenau; their selection for gassing in January 1943; her privileged position in the laundry; brief transfer to the Zigeunerlager (Gypsy Lager); its liquidation; assignment to the new laundry; assisting new arrivals; observing prisoners who were used for medical experiments; the death march to Ravensbrück in January 1945; transport to Neustadt-Glewe; slave labor in an airplane factory; sabotaging the parts; assistance from German workers; liberation by Soviet troops in May; a difficult journey to Sečovce; learning one sibling had survived; moving to Trebišov to live with a cousin, then to Bratislava; and marriage in 1960. Mrs. V. discusses many details of camp life; loss of hope and constant fear in the camps; sharing everything with her friends, including poison (they did not want to be gassed); being sterilized; the veteran status of Slovak women in Auschwitz/Birkenau because they were the first female prisoners; present fears resulting from her experiences; and a recent visit to Auschwitz.

V., Ruzena.
Bratislava, Slovakia : Milan Šimečka Foundation, 1995
Interview Date
May 5, 1995.
Secǒvce (Slovakia)
Poprad (Slovakia)
Trebišov (Slovakia)
Bratislava (Slovakia)
3 copies: Betacam SP dub; 1/2 in. VHS dub; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
Cite As
Ruzena V. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-3676). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.