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Chaya R. Holocaust testimony (HVT-4001)

Oral History | Fortunoff Collection ID: HVT-4001

Videotape testimony of Chaya R., who was born in Utrecht, Netherlands in 1925, the fourth of five children. She recounts her family's farm in a rural village; her father working in the diamond trade; not being raised with a Jewish identity; attending a progressive school in Hilversum headed by Joop Westerweel; visiting an orphanage of German refugee children; acquiring her sense of being Jewish from that experience; joining a Zionist youth group; one brother's emigration to Canada; two Jewish girls from Germany living with them for eighteen months until their departure for the United States; German invasion in May 1940; anti-Jewish regulations, including expulsion from school; one sister hiding Jews; deportation with her parents, maternal grandmother, and brother to Westerbork; receiving packages from her sisters; release after her father bribed the Germans with diamonds; living in Amsterdam; obtaining false papers; the underground placing her in several locations, including Westerweel's home; placement at a farm in Friesland in November 1943; visits from her sister; obtaining food from neighbors for her family in hiding and the underground; occasionally attending church with her host family; one visit to her parents; learning one sister had been deported; liberation; returning home; reunion with her family (all of her siblings and both parents had survived); attending a Zionist course; working at a dairy; emigrating to Palestine in 1947; her father's death; marriage; and her mother coming to live with them. She discusses nightmares of running from Germans; continuing contact with the family in Friesland who hid her; and having them honored by Yad Vashem.

Author/Creator
R., Chaya, 1925-
Published
Tel Aviv, Israel : Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, 1998
Interview Date
May 7 and May 14, 1998.
Language
Hebrew
Copies
2 copies: Betacam SP master; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
Cite As
Chaya R. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-4001). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.