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E. F. Holocaust testimony (HVT-3925) interviewed by Peter Salner and Sasa Kryslova

Oral History | Fortunoff Collection ID: HVT-3925

Videotape testimony of E. F., who was born in Trenčín, Czechoslovakia (presently Slovakia) in 1927, the younger of two children. She recalls her family observing Jewish holidays; frequent family outings; schoolmates who joined the Hlinka guard shunning her and other Jews beginning in 1938; empathy from teachers and evangelical students; expulsion from school in 1940; participating in Hashomer Hatzair; exclusion from deportation in 1942 due to her broken arm (most of her friends were deported); hiding in a friend's attic during subsequent deportations; evangelical youth movements providing government documents which she brought to Jews in slave labor battalions to enable their escapes; arrest of her father, grandfather, and others in 1944; her mother hiding; her brother joining the partisans; her arrest when using false papers; transfer to Sered after several days; a guard giving them escape tools and money as they boarded a deportation train to Ravensbrück; not escaping because others threatened to expose them; total dehumanization upon arrival when they transitioned from a human with a name to a number; slave labor digging potatoes in January; learning her mother was there; arranging to move her mother to her block; her mother's deportation to Bergen-Belsen while E. F. was working (E. F. feels continuing guilt that she did not survive); orthodox women who refused to eat non-kosher food dying within ten days; losing her belief in God as a result; losing her finger nails from working with chemicals; fainting when starting on a death march; her friends reviving and helping her; escaping, with five others, knowing they could not survive the march; hiding in a forest; learning the war was over; traveling to Prague; assistance from the Red Cross; learning her brother had survived; their reunion in Bratislava; hospitalization; and obtaining their parents' house, although it was empty. E. F. discusses fantasizing about food with other women in Ravensbrück and she and her brother being the sole survivors of a large, extended family.

Author/Creator
F., E., 1925-2010.
Published
Bratislava, Slovakia : Milan Šimečka Foundation, 1996
Interview Date
March 24, 1996.
Language
Slovak
Copies
3 copies: 1/2 in. VHS master; Betacam SP submaster; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
Cite As
E. F. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-3925). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.