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Michael A. Holocaust testimony (HVT-602) interviewed by Eva Cooperman,

Oral History | Fortunoff Collection ID: HVT-602

Videotape testimony of Michael A., who was born in Amsterdam, Netherlands in 1910. He recounts his family's long lineage of Italian rabbis; attending public school; graduating from university in 1929; working as a window dresser in the Hague; marriage in 1938; German invasion; anti-Jewish restrictions; working with the underground; membership on the Judenrat; being approached by Friedrich Weinreb to go to Portugal (it was a sham); deportation to Westerbork in 1943; his wife contracting polio; working as a carpenter; deportation to Bergen-Belsen in 1944; separation from his wife; slave labor as a carpenter; confessing to stealing food to save an older prisoner; smuggling his wife into his barrack; arrival of prisoners from Auschwitz; digging mass graves; a death march to a train; liberation by United States troops in April 1945; serving as an interpreter; reluctance to take revenge on Germans; returning to the Hague with his wife; his daughter's birth; emigration to the United States in 1951; and difficulties receiving reparations. Mr. A. discusses not leaving the Netherlands prior to the war due to excellent relations with non-Jews; the importance to his survival of being with his wife and his “moral strength”; and seeking information about his family (most did not survive).

A., Michael, 1910-
Greenwich, Conn. : Second Generation of Westchester, 1982
Interview Date
October 30, 1982.
Amsterdam (Netherlands)
Hague (Netherlands)
4 copies: 1/2 in. VHS master; Betacam SP restoration master; Betacam SP restoration submaster; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
Cite As
Michael A. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-602). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.