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Sara M. Holocaust testimony (HVT-3914)

Oral History | Fortunoff Collection ID: HVT-3914

Videotape testimony of Sara M., who was born in Kaunas, Russia (presently Lithuania) in 1915, the oldest of three children. She recounts her family's move to Jurbarkas, then Ukmergė; attending a Russian school, then a Jewish school where Jacob Gens, the future head of the Vilna ghetto, was her teacher; moving to Kaunas in 1934 for a job; her brother joining her; her sister's emigration to Palestine in 1939; Soviet occupation; living with her aunt and grandmother; German invasion; local Lithuanians rounding up and killing Jewish men, including her brother; ghettoization; slave labor at an airfield; non-Jewish friends outside the ghetto giving her food for her family; arrest for smuggling; release after a friend bribed a German; her grandmother's death; hiding during round-ups; assignment to a farm from which smuggled food into the ghetto; transfer with her aunts to Kovno concentration camp, then six months later to the Šiauliai ghetto, Panevėžys, then Stutthof; separation from her aunts (they did not survive); assignment to a group of Hungarian women who lit Sabbath candles; a three-day beating as a scapegoat for the candle lighters; the Hungarian women not giving her food; transfer to a group digging ditches, then to a small group for farm work; eating the raw vegetable they harvested in summer 1944; death marches for months; liberation by Soviet troops near Berlin; traveling to Kaunas via Łódź, Hrodna, and Vilnius; being smuggled to Białystok in 1947; contact with Hashomer Hatzair; being sent by them to Warsaw, then to their kibbutz in Łódź; meeting her future husband; emigration to Palestine via Marseille in spring 1948; reunion with her sister; her death in 1958; and raising her sister's children. Ms. M. shows photographs.

Author/Creator
M., Sara, 1915-
Published
Tel Aviv, Israel : Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, 1998
Interview Date
January 22, 1998.
Language
Hebrew
Copies
2 copies: Betacam SP master and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
Cite As
Sara M. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-3914). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.