Advanced Search

Learn About The Holocaust

Special Collections

My Saved Research

Login

Register

Help

Skip to main content

Henry B. Holocaust testimony (HVT-689) interviewed by Maryanne Kador and Gloria Demby

Oral History | Fortunoff Collection ID: HVT-689

Videotape testimony of Henry B., who was born in Berlin, Germany, in 1926. Mr. B. recalls his father's reluctance to emigrate; seizure of the family business in 1938; attempts to leave in 1940; forced labor; a "crazy" Polish Jew who recounted atrocities; food parcels received from the chauffeur of a Nazi politician; arrest in January 1943; transport to Birkenau; selection; an SS officer allowing his father to remain with him and his brother; transfer to Auschwitz, then Jawischowitz; arduous conditions in the coal mine; becoming friends with members of the communist underground; his father's transfer to the Auschwitz infirmary; and the camp's evacuation in early 1945. He describes the death march to Gross Rosen, Flossenbürg, Buchenwald, Ohrdruf, and back to Buchenwald; urinating on his feet to prevent gangrene; his brother's killing before arrival in Dachau; being beaten by prisoners who thought he was a deserting guard; liberation; recuperation; reunion with his surviving uncle in Berlin; and emigration to America with the Joint's help in 1947. He reflects on the role of self-discipline in his survival; the prisoner's peculiar sense of time; his son's reluctance to ask about his experiences; and his disillusionment with both "materialistic" West and "dismal" East Germany.

Author/Creator
B., Henry, 1926-
Published
New York, N.Y. : Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies at Yale, 1986
Interview Date
April 12, 1986.
Language
English
Copies
3 copies: 3/4 in. master; 3/4 in. dub; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
Cite As
Henry B. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-689). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.