Alexander E. Holocaust testimony (HVT-3776)
- Tel Aviv, Israel : Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, 1995
- Interview Date
- April 19, June 2 and 8, and November 10, 1995.
- 2 copies: 3/4 in. masters; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
- Cite As
- Alexander E. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-3776). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.
Videotape testimony of Alexander E., who was born in Łódź, Poland, in 1928, an only child. He recounts his family's affluence; attending a Jewish private school; grand celebrations of Jewish holidays at his maternal grandparents' home; German invasion; his father's brief flight east; ghettoization; his grandfather's non-Jewish former employee bringing them food; his father's privileged position managing meat distribution; studying with a private tutor; he and his mother working in a factory; his extended family of ten hiding during a round-up; his grandfather's death; fear of frequent transports; deportation with his family to Auschwitz in August 1944, where he was “broken”; separation with his father from their family; transfer with his father two weeks later to Braunschweig; slave labor in a Büssing tire factory; a German supervisor leaving them extra bread; fear and starvation dominating their lives; a forced march to Watenstedt; his father's death; train transfer to Ravensbrück; receiving Red Cross packages; believing for the first time that he might survive; transfer two days later to Ludwigslust; liberation by United States troops; hospitalization; traveling to Łódź; reunion with a cousin; living on a Hashomer Hatzair kibbutz, then another in Peterswaldau (Pieszyce); traveling with Beriḥah to Vienna via Prague in 1946; assistance from UNRRA and the Joint; illegal emigration via Italy to Palestine in 1947; incarceration by the British in Cyprus; serving in the Arab-Israel war; marriage; and the births of his children. Mr. E. discusses his depression and nightmares; hiding his trauma until the Eichmann trial brought it to the surface; hospitalization and treatment helping him manage his fears; and the impossibility for someone who did not experience it to understand Holocaust survivors.