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Hadassah R. Holocaust testimony (HVT-530) interviewed by Kathy Strochlic and Batik Woller

Oral History | Fortunoff Collection ID: HVT-530

Videotape testimony of Hadassah R., who was born in Koło around 1923. She recalls attending Polish school in Dąbie Miasto; the German invasion; posing as a Christian to return to Koło; atrocities committed against Jews, particularly the brutal beating of her brother; establishment of a killing center in nearby Chełmno, from which she escaped; posing as a non-Jew; and meeting other Jews hiding near Grabów. Mrs. R. describes ghettos in Ozorków and Łęczyca; working in a typhus hospital; transfer to Łódź; attempts to warn Rumkowski about the Chełmno killing center; her sense that people simply could not assimilate this information ("they had eyes that could not see and ears that could not hear"); transfer to Auschwitz on the same transport as Ḥayim Rumkowski; incidents with Josef Mengele; transfer to the Zigeunerlager (Gypsy Lager); transport to Austria; and liberation by Americans on May 1, 1945. Mrs. R. relates travel to Italy to find her brother; work in Modena; the kindness of the Italians; attempts to reach Palestine; interception by the British and internment in a prison camp; the stress of three wars in Israel leading to her decision to emigrate; marriage and the birth of a daughter in Cuba; emigration to the United States in 1960; the birth of her second daughter; and her desire to convey her experience to students. Mrs. R. hopes that telling her story may help prevent a recurrence.

Author/Creator
R., Hadassah, 1923?-
Published
New York, N.Y. : Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies at Yale, 1984
Interview Date
November 12, 1984.
Language
English
Copies
3 copies: 3/4 in. master; 3/4 in. dub; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
Cite As
Hadassah R. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-530). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.