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Elimelech S. Holocaust testimony (HVT-3246) interviewed by Nathan Beyrak and Levana Frank

Oral History | Fortunoff Collection ID: HVT-3246

Videotape testimony of Elimelech S., who was born in Żuromin, Poland in 1919. He recounts his father's death before his birth; his mother's remarriage; attending public school, cheder, then a technical school; antisemitic harassment; working in Warsaw beginning in 1938; German invasion in September 1939; returning home; deportation from Sierpc to Pomiechówek, then Nowy Dwór Mazowiecki in November; escaping; joining his family in Warsaw; retrieving money in Żuromin; selling belongings in Mława; returning to Warsaw; ghettoization; posing as a Polish smuggler to escape; smuggling food to his family from Chotomów; traveling to the Mława ghetto; learning his stepfather, older sister, and mother had died of starvation; public hangings and a mass killing; deportation to Auschwitz/Birkenau in November 1941; assignment to masonry school; obtaining matzo from friends for Passover; transfer to the greenhouses in Rajsko; brief hospitalization; a death march, then train transport in January 1945; assisting his cousin Abraham D., who had been wounded in the Sonderkommando uprising; jumping from the train; hiding with locals in Nový Bohumín; liberation by Soviet troops; traveling from Katowice to Warsaw, then with non-Jews to Mława; leaving them after learning they were in Armia Krajowa, smuggling weapons to attack Jews; assistance from the Red Cross; briefly returning to Żuromin; staying in Gdańsk, Berlin, Magdeburg, and Marburg; illegal emigration to Palestine via Paris, where he met David Ben-Gurion, then Marseille; marriage; and the births of a son and daughter. Mr. S. discusses relations between national groups in camps; attributing his survival to his impoverished youth; testifying against Thies Christophersen, an SS officer in Rajsko; pervasive painful memories; sharing his experiences with his children; and speaking to groups at Yad Vashem. He shows photographs and a sheet he used to escape.

S., Elimelech, 1919-
Tel Aviv, Israel : Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, 1991
Interview Date
May 7, 1991.
Żuromin (Poland)
Warsaw (Poland)
Sierpc (Poland : Powiat)
Pomiechówek (Poland)
Nowy Dwór Mazowiecki (Poland)
Mława (Poland)
Chotomów (Poland)
Nový Bohumín (Czech republic)
Katowice (Poland)
Gdańsk (Poland)
Berlin (Germany)
Magdeburg (Germany)
Marburg (Germany)
Paris (France)
Marseille (France)
2 copies: 3/4 in. master; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
Cite As
Elimelech S. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-3246). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.
View in Yale University Library Catalog:
Record last modified: 2018-06-04 13:32:00
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