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Fishel Y. Holocaust testimony (HVT-3847)

Oral History | Fortunoff Collection ID: HVT-3847

Videotape testimony of Fishel Y., who was born in Łódź, Poland in 1921, one of four children. He recounts his father's bakery; German invasion; fleeing with his family to his paternal grandparents in Rejowiec; Germans compelling them to work; smuggling themselves into the Łódź ghetto two months later; working in his father's bakery; one brother's deportation in September 1940; his deportation to Grunow three days later; slave labor building the Reichsautobahn; adequate food, access to showers, and clean barracks (better conditions than the ghetto); corresponding with his brother through a camp nurse; transfer to Liebenau, then Wittenberge; a serious injury in 1942; transport to the Jewish hospital in Berlin; surgery and convalescence; a non-Jew bringing him extra food; returning to Wittenberge three months later; transfer to Auschwitz/Birkenau in 1943; slave labor at the camp's farm; hospitalization; trading cigarettes for food; assignment to the kommando preparing the gas chambers for demolition; transfer to Gross-Rosen, then Buchenwald; liberation by United States troops; hospitalization; transfer to the Fulda displaced persons camp; traveling to Bamberg; returning home; reunion with his brother in 1946 (the only survivor of their family); arranging for his brother to enter the Fürth displaced persons camp; his brother's marriage and emigration to Enschede; learning weaving in Kulmbach; joining his brother in 1947; emigration to Israel in 1949; marriage in 1955; and participating in the Sinai war. Mr. Y. discusses the camp hierarchy based on nationality; nightmares resulting from his experiences; not sharing his experiences with his daughter; attributing his survival to luck and miracles; and not understanding how God allowed the Holocaust, but continuing to believe in a supreme power. He shows documents and photographs.

Author/Creator
Y., Fishel, 1921-
Published
Tel Aviv, Israel : Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, 1996
Interview Date
October 18, and October 31, 1996.
Locale
Poland
Łódź
Łódź (Poland)
Rejowiec Lubelski (Poland)
Berlin (Germany)
Bamberg (Germany)
Kulmbach (Germany)
Enschede (Netherlands)
Language
Hebrew
Copies
2 copies: Betacam SP master; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
Cite As
Fishel Y. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-3847). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.