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Karel H. Holocaust testimony (HVT-471) interviewed by Sidney Elsner

Oral History | Fortunoff Collection ID: HVT-471

Videotape testimony of Karel H., who was born in approximately 1920. He recalls a carpentry apprenticeship in Ostrava; German occupation; moving to Prague; deportation to Theresienstadt in fall 1941; forced labor as a carpenter; public hangings; pervasive deaths; leadership by Fredy Hirsch and Jacob Edelstein; organized concerts by prisoners; deportation to Auschwitz in September 1944; volunteering as a carpenter after a few weeks; transfer to Gleiwitz; better treatment by the soldiers than the SS; a death march in winter 1944-1945; escaping into the woods; entering Blechhammer after it had been evacuated; Germans returning and randomly machine gunning areas; liberation by Soviet troops in January; transfer to Częstochowa; traveling to his home village, then Prague; reunion with a sister; learning his father and two brothers had perished; and emigration to join relatives in the United States in 1949. Mr. H. discusses nightmares and emotional distress resulting from his experiences and reluctance to discuss them, but his son urging him to record his testimony.

Author/Creator
H., Karel, 1920?-
Published
Cleveland, Ohio : National Council of Jewish Women, Holocaust Archive Project, 1984
Interview Date
December 12, 1984.
Language
English
Copies
2 copies: 3/4 in. dub; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
Cite As
Karel H. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-471). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.