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Paulina R. Holocaust testimony (HVT-3896) interviewed by Peter Salner and Ingrid Antalová

Oral History | Fortunoff Collection ID: HVT-3896

Videotape testimony of Paulina R., who was born in Veškovce, Czechoslovakia (presently Slovakia) in 1922, the youngest of ten children. She recalls her father was a Talmud scholar; cordial relations with non-Jews; commuting to high school in Uz︠h︡horod; Hungarian occupation; the school principal accommodating the Jewish students despite anti-Jewish laws; the draft of two brothers into Hungarian slave labor battalions; her father's death in 1940; round-up with her family to a brick factory in Uz︠h︡horod; deportation to Auschwitz; separation from her mother and sisters' children upon arrival (they never saw them again); she and three sisters trying to seem unrelated in order to stay together; slave labor digging trenches; hospitalization; prisoners' singing giving her hope; a death march; her sisters insisting she continue when she wanted to remain behind to be killed; locals providing food for them in Domažlice; an Allied bombing; escaping to a village; locals sheltering and feeding them until liberation; hospitalization in Prachatice for three months; American soldiers giving her medication; moving to Prague with her sister; entering university; her sister's emigration to Israel in 1948; and teaching in Topol̕čany beginning in 1953. Ms. R. discusses believing she would not survive after she was deported; the importance of her sisters to her survival; painful memories, particularly that of the loss of her mother, resulting in nightmares for many years; and not sharing her story with others, but acknowledging the need to remember.

R., Paulina, 1922-
Bratislava, Slovakia : Milan Šimečka Foundation, 1996
Interview Date
February 9, 1996.
3 copies: 1/2 in. VHS master; Betacam SP submaster; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
Cite As
Paulina R. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-3896). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.
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Record last modified: 2013-10-18 13:45:00
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