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Oral history interview with Ilona Blair

Oral History | Digitized | Accession Number: 2006.70.12 | RG Number: RG-50.583.0012

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    Oral history interview with Ilona Blair


    Interview Summary
    Ilona Blair, born December 12, 1929 in Uzhorod, Czechoslovakia (Uzhhorod, Ukraine), discusses Hungarians taking over her town and depriving Jews of rights; how her father refused an offer to enter into hiding; being forced to move into the ghetto in her hometown; being transported to and arriving at Auschwitz on May 20, 1944; the conditions at the camp; being told about the gas chambers and not believing it at first; being moved to Hamburg, Germany; the bombing of Hamburg; having to escape the bomb shelter because of the bombing; fleeing to the nearest field; realizing the end of the war was coming; being taken to Bergen-Belsen; being told that she would not leave the camp alive; seeing the SS change into civilian clothes in order to avoid getting caught; how the guards tried to save their own lives, going to the prisoners’ quarters because they were in fear of being bombed; how half the transport died in the ten days that they were in Bergen-Belsen; contracting typhus just before liberation; being liberated; going to Sweden; being treated in a hospital in Sweden and then living there for two years; finding out that her sisters were alive; moving to Australia with her sister; having mixed reactions to the Jewish community in Australia; and meeting her husband.
    Ilona Blair
    interview:  1989 November 25
    Credit Line
    Forms part of the Claims Conference International Holocaust Documentation Archive at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. This archive consists of documentation whose reproduction and/or acquisition was made possible with funding from the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany.

    Physical Details

    1 sound cassette.

    Rights & Restrictions

    Conditions on Access
    There are no known restrictions on access to this material.
    Conditions on Use
    Permission must be obtained from the University of Sydney, Archive of Australian Judaica for any type of use other than research.

    Keywords & Subjects

    Personal Name
    Blair, Ilona, 1929-

    Administrative Notes

    The Australian Institute of Holocaust Studies conducted the interview with Ilona Blair for the Twelfth Hour Project. The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum received a copy of the interview in April 2006 from the State Library of New South Wales where the collection is housed.
    Record last modified:
    2023-11-16 09:03:01
    This page:

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