Miriam E. Holocaust testimony (HVT-3848)
- Tel Aviv, Israel : Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, 1996
- Interview Date
- October 24 and November 15 and 21, 1996.
- 2 copies: Betacam SP master and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
- Cite As
- Miriam E. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-3848). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.
Videotape testimony of Miriam E., who was born in Bełżyce, Poland in 1929, the youngest of three children. She recounts her family's poverty; their move to Lublin; attending three years of public school; visiting her aunt in Bełżyce; German invasion; observing Germans killing family friends; returning home four months later; her family escaping in Piaski during their forced relocation; living with a family friend; returning to Lublin days later; her parents returning her to her aunt in Bełżyce, thinking it safer (she never saw them again); in 1942, her uncle sending her and two cousins to another uncle in Lublin, who had a workshop vital to the Germans in Lublin; living with him in the Majdan Tartarski ghetto; hiding during round-ups; returning to Bełżyce, which had been ghettoized; hiding during round-ups; a woman living with them giving birth; hiding with non-Jews in 1942; denouncement; the woman who hid them bribing the Polish police to release them; deportation to Budzyn; a kapo allowing her younger male cousin to stay with them in the female barrack; slave labor in the kitchen providing access to extra food; sharing it with her family; and observing Kommandant Feiks execute one of her cousins.
Ms. E. recalls deportation with her aunt and cousins to Majdanek; working in the laundry; hospitalization; a death march (she walked with her family) and train transfer to Auschwitz/Birkenau; observing the fires and smelling the odors of the crematoria; being selected for death; escaping to a children's barrack to join her youngest cousin; a death march with her to Ravensbrück; transfer to Malchow; receiving Red Cross packages; another march; abandonment by the guards; liberation by Soviet troops; living in Neubrandenburg; traveling to Łódź, then Lublin; living in an orphanage; reunion with her aunt and cousins; living in Pieszyce; attending school; participation in Zionist youth groups; moving to Lampertheim and Bergen-Belsen displaced persons camp; emigration to Israel via Italy; and the births of two children. Ms. E. discusses physical and mental health issues resulting from her experiences; continuing hope her immediate family survived; not sharing her experiences with her children, fearing a negative influence; Israelis' lack of interest in survivors; and a year of emotional struggle when she wrote her story which she shared with her children.