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Oral history interview with Algimantas Gureckas

Oral History | Accession Number: 2010.351 | RG Number: RG-50.030.0608

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

Algimantas Gureckas, born June 2, 1923, in Tauragė, Lithuania, discusses his early childhood and his memories of good relations amongst nationalities and religious communities in Lithuania; his family’s openness about religion and lack of discrimination towards Jews; their move to Panevėžys; his family’s mistrust of Poles following the Polish invasion of Vilnius; the 1939 German occupation of Klaipėda; his feelings on the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact; how the invasion of Poland changed Lithuanian attitudes towards Poles; his involvement in a voluntary organization formed to defend Lithuania; the October 10, 1939 treaty between the Soviet Union and Lithuania; how he volunteered to fight against the German occupation, but was denied the opportunity by the recruiting officer; the Russian occupation of Lithuania; his feelings that the Jewish community betrayed Lithuania because many of its members supported the Russian occupation; seeing the German invasion as liberation from the threat of deportation to Siberia; the establishment of his town’s ghetto; popular feelings about the killing of the town’s Jews; attending university in Vilnius; the Lithuanian boycott of German goods; attempts to establish SS legions; his membership in a resistance movement against Nazis; his draft into the Reich Labor Service (Reichsarbeitsdienst) and service near the island of Rügen off the coast of Germany; his move to East Prussia because of the inevitable takeover by Russian forces; being forced to work in the Luftwaffe; his move to Munich and reunion with his mother; Munich’s liberation by American troops; and immigration to and life in the United States.

Interviewee
Algimantas Gureckas
Interviewer
Ina Navazelskis
Date
2010 October 14  (interview)
Language
English
Genre/Form
Oral histories.
Extent
5 videocassettes (DVCAM) : sound, color ; 1/4 in..
Credit Line
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, courtesy of the Jeff and Toby Herr Foundation
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Record last modified: 2018-01-22 11:20:38
This page: https://collections.ushmm.org/search/catalog/irn42272