Baruch H. Holocaust testimony (HVT-3550)
- Tel Aviv, Israel : Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, 1993
- Interview Date
- June 28, 1993.
- 2 copies: 3/4 in. master; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
- Cite As
- Baruch H. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-3550). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.
Videotape testimony of Baruch H., who was born in Utrecht, the Netherlands in 1924, one of four children. He recounts his happy childhood; his father's secularism and Zionism; attending public school; cordial relations with non-Jews; his mother's illness; his father's military draft as veterinarian in 1940; German invasion in May; anti-Jewish restrictions including expulsion from school, his father's dismissal from his job, confiscation of valuables, and compulsory wearing of the yellow star; his father's decision to hide the family in different locations in summer 1942; entrusting valuables to non-Jewish friends; a priest arranging for him to hide with a Catholic farm family; praying and attending church with them; obtaining false papers as a non-Jew from the underground; his father's visit; a warning of denouncement; leaving with his father; hiding with non-Jews in several locations, including an impoverished farm in Almelo for six months; fleeing when the farmer's wife tried to seduce him; briefly staying with his older sister, a nurse who lived as non-Jew; a last visit with his mother (she died in a sanatorium); and moving to a farm in Lunteren in fall 1943.
Mr. H. recounts joining the underground; organizing hiding places, collecting air-dropped weapons, gathering information, writing articles, and assisting Allied parachutists escape; arrest; exposure as a Jew which saved him from execution as a resistant; a severe beating and gang rapes by Germans; being forced to watch a prisoner being tortured; transfer to a villa from which he escaped; returning to the farm where he had previously hidden; moving often with assistance from the underground; liberation by Canadian troops; denouncing a Nazi working for the Canadians; returning home; reunion with his father and sisters; his family reburying his mother as a Jew; briefly attending university; emotional problems due to his experiences; hospitalization; joining a Zionist organization; locating hidden Jewish orphans; helping smuggle Jews and weapons to Palestine; meeting his future wife at a Hechalutz orphanage; and joining his father and sisters in Israel in 1948. Mr. H. discusses continuing emotional problems and nightmares; his career as an educator; not sharing his experiences with his family until recently; feeling haunted by having to kill others as part of the underground; and attending a reunion of his underground unit in Holland in the 1970s.