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Leon G. Holocaust testimony (HVT-2119) interviewed by Alberta Strage

Oral History | Fortunoff Collection ID: HVT-2119

Videotape testimony of Leon G., who was born in London, England in 1910, the youngest of six children. He recounts moving to Rotterdam in 1911; his mother's death in 1912; his father's marriage to an American non-Jew; working from age twelve; moving to London in 1930; working as a hairdresser; joining his future father-in-law in business; marriage in 1935; moving in with his wife's grandmother in Holland; German invasion in May 1940; his son's birth; trying to obtain exit documents; their deportation to Westerbork in October 1942; efforts to be released as British citizens; his father's arrival; his release due to his marriage to a non-Jew; deportation to Birkenau in January 1943; separation from his family; meaningless slave labor; observing the Zigeunerlager (Gypsy Lager); its disappearance; transfer to Auschwitz; Hungarian Jews fasting on Yom Kippur; hospitalization; assistance from a non-Jewish Pole; public hangings; transfer to Monowitz; salvaging cigarette butts from British POWs; a death march to Gleiwitz in January 1945; train transport to Buchenwald; guards shooting at Czechs throwing them food; hospitalization; liberation by United States troops; retrieving ashes from the crematorium; transfer to Paris; amputation of a toe; reunion with his father in Rotterdam; reunion with his brother in London; and his family's initial inability to believe his experiences. Mr. G. discusses attributing his survival to his desire to see his wife and son again; confirming their deaths; speaking in schools about his experiences; and leading Dutch student groups to Auschwitz/Birkenau. He shows photographs, documents and memorabilia.

Author/Creator
G., Leon, 1910-
Published
London, England : British Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, 1992
Interview Date
September 16, 1992.
Language
English
Copies
2 copies: 3/4 in. dub; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
Cite As
Leon G. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-2119). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.