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Oral history interview with Jack Hoffmann

Oral History | Accession Number: 2015.103.6 | RG Number: RG-50.865.0006

Some video files begin with 10-60 seconds of color bars.

Jack Hoffmann, born in 1924 in Stanislau, Poland (Stanislav, Ukraine), describes how his father Marcus, his mother Ernestine, his older sister Leah, and he moved to Austria around 1926; living in a small apartment in Vienna; his family being lower middle-class and his father’s job as an executive in a firm making margarine; his Orthodox father and his assimilated mother; attending gymnasium and Hebrew school and playing field hockey; his family having Jewish and non-Jewish friends and being culturally active, often attending Vienna's opera and theatre; minor incidents of antisemitism; the Jewish refugees who came from Germany after 1933; the social changes in Germany; the Anschluss and the Nuremberg laws; his family being moved to a smaller apartment; seeing Hitler in a parade on April 9, 1938; his father losing his job; changes in his school and being kicked out; his memories of Kristallnacht and the destruction of synagogues; his father being arrested and kept several weeks; taking Zionist courses to prepare Jews for going to Palestine; being sent on a Kindertransport to London, England; attending an intercultural camp, sponsored by a Zionist organization; staying with several families in Wellingborough and Liverpool; going to Boston, MA in July 1940; his parents and sister arriving in New York in February 1940; his younger brother dying in Buchenwald and other family members who died in camps; living in New York, NY and attending Samuel J. Tilden High School; being drafted in 1943 and his father dying while he was away; attending NYU and UNC Greensboro; working at the Kloeckner company and being wary at first about working for a German company; traveling to Germany and being struck by the dramatic change there; getting married in 1982; being active in his community; joining the Kindertransport Association and attending a 1999 reunion in London; speaking to middle and high school students in Greensboro; participating in the Greensboro Holocaust Council; his involvement with politics and organizing several groups; and his belief in the importance of sharing stories of the Holocaust.

Interviewee
Jack Hoffmann
Interviewer
Dr. Marcia Horn
Date
2006 November 14  (interview)
Language
English
Extent
1 DVD.
Credit Line
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Marcia Horn
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Record last modified: 2018-01-22 10:40:43
This page: https://collections.ushmm.org/search/catalog/irn126354