Elisa F. Holocaust testimony (HVT-4068) interviewed by Yannis Thanassekos and Michel Rosenfeldt
- Brussels, Belgium : Fondation Auschwitz, 1996
- Interview Date
- November 27, 1996.
- 2 copies: Betacam SP master; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
- Cite As
- Elisa F. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-4068). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.
Videotape testimony of Elisa F., who was born in Rhodes, Italy (presently Greece) in 1927, the youngest of six children. She recounts her happy childhood; attending a Jewish, then an Italian school; moving to Kos in 1942; her father's leadership role in the Jewish community; anti-Jewish legislation; her mother's death; two brothers' emigrations; her father warning Jews to leave; his emigration to Turkey (her sister lived there); German invasion; fleeing to the countryside with her brother and his family; round-up and deportation to Greece; meeting two aunts; the Turkish consul having her brother and his family freed because her brother's wife was Turkish; deportation to Auschwitz; separation from her aunts (she never saw them again); meaningless slave labor; transfer to Wilischtal; slave labor in a munitions factory; public hangings; a severe beating for taking potatoes, from which she still suffers pain; transfer to Theresienstadt; assistance from the Red Cross; liberation by Soviet troops; traveling to Vienna; United States troops smuggling them to Rome; assistance from UNRRA; contact with her brother; joining him in the Congo via Lisbon; marriage to a Greek survivor in 1946; the births of her children; and returning to Europe in 1960. Ms. F. discusses becoming inured to death in the camps; relations among nationalities; some prisoners fasting on Yom Kippur; being disadvantaged by not speaking Yiddish, German, or Polish; postwar difficulty adjusting to “normal” life; pervasive painful memories and nightmares; books written by her and her father; and visiting Rhodes in 1966.