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Pierre T. Holocaust testimony (HVT-836) interviewed by Dana L. Kline and Susan Millen

Oral History | Fortunoff Collection ID: HVT-836

Videotape testimony of Pierre T., a non-Jew, who was born in Brittany, France, in 1909. Mr. T. recounts serving as chief purser on the ocean liner Normandie in 1939; his capture at the defeat of the French army in 1940; escaping to join his family in Châteaubriant; shock at the execution of twenty-seven townsmen; obtaining a job which enabled him to issue false documents; and serving the Resistance as a guide for downed Allied fliers. He recalls his arrest in January 1944; Gestapo interrogations and torture; being transported naked (to deter escape attempts) in overcrowded boxcars to Mauthausen; difficult conditions there; aid from a French doctor in the infirmary; weekly selections to ease overcrowding; and having to gain the approval of the Communist Party cell to obtain a job emptying latrine barrels. He discusses his transfer to Melk, where a friend enabled him to become chef for the SS; being beaten for food smuggling; transfer to Ebensee in April 1945; liberation by the American Third Army; and townspeople being forced to view the camp. He reflects on his return home; telling neighbors of their loved ones' deaths; emigration to the United States; and the contrast between German treatment of prisoners of war and underground fighters.

Author/Creator
T., Pierre, 1909-1993.
Published
New Haven, Conn. : Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies at Yale, 1987
Interview Date
March 25, 1987.
Language
English
Copies
3 copies: 3/4 in. master; 3/4 in. dub; and 1/2 in. VHS with timecoding.
Cite As
Pierre T. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-836). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.