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Zalman H. Holocaust testimony (HVT-3638)

Oral History | Fortunoff Collection ID: HVT-3638

Videotape testimony of Zalman H., who was born in Warsaw, Poland in 1929, the youngest of six brothers. He recounts being the sole Jew in his public school class; antisemitic harassment; his oldest brother's draft in 1937; German invasion; anti-Jewish restrictions; ghettoization; his father's death; two brothers escaping and working as non-Jews; smuggling food into the ghetto with Peretz, his next oldest brother; arrest by Polish police; escape; his father's non-Jewish friend once providing food; his mother's death; escaping with Peretz; moving from place to place; entering the ghetto often to obtain goods to sell outside the ghetto; a ghetto resistance fighter showing him a secret arms cache; fighting with him during the uprising; capture; escaping from a boxcar; finding Peretz; selling cigarettes and newspapers; attending church to reinforce his non-Jewish identity to the other street children; obtaining false papers from the underground, resulting in registering and living with a Polish woman as non-Jews; occasional contact with a person from the Jewish underground; joining the Polish resistance; fighting in the Polish uprising; and their unit surrendering.

Mr. H. recalls transport to Ożarów; transfer to Stalag VIII B (Lamsdorf), then IV B (Mühlberg); receiving Red Cross parcels; forced labor in an airplane factory; antisemitic harassment by non-Jewish Polish prisoners; assistance from their German supervisor; liberation by Soviet troops from an evacuation march; jumping on a train to Warsaw, leaving Peretz behind; reunion with another brother who had survived posing as a non-Jew; Peretz's return; joining a kibbutz; being smuggled to Bratislava, Prague, Germany, then Marseille; illegal emigration to Palestine in August 1946; interdiction by the British; incarceration on Cyprus; release; reunion with his brothers (they had arrived while he was in Cyprus); draft into the Palmaḥ; fighting in the Israel-Arab War; marriage; and the births of three sons. Mr. H. discusses his nightmares and sharing his experiences with his sons and in schools. He sings Polish resistance songs and shows photographs.

H., Zalman, 1929-
Tel Aviv, Israel : Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, 1994
Interview Date
February 24, and March 24, 1994.
Warsaw (Poland)
Ożarów (Poland)
Bratislava (Slovakia)
Prague (Czech Republic)
Frankfurt am Main (Germany)
Marseille (France)
2 copies: 3/4 in. dub; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
Cite As
Zalman H. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-3638). 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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