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Oral history interview with Franz Thaler

Oral History | Accession Number: 2009.402.5 | RG Number: RG-50.654.0005

Franz Thaler, born in 1925 in Reinswald, Italy, discusses his time in hiding in the forest after the capitulation of Italy to Nazi Germany; his fear that he would be mobilized into the German Army; threats by local police against his family if he did not turn himself in to the authorities; his cousin, a supporter of the Nazi movement, who suggested that that he join the police unit in Schlanders; his sentence by an SS military judge to 10 years in prison as a deserter; his arrival in Dachau by train; being humiliated along with other prisoners in from the of the SS; failing medical tests that would send him to fight at the front; deaths of many prisoners at the hands of Kapos and from hunger and disease; the execution of prisoners by the SS; his transfer to Hersbruck, where he worked in a quarry and on the construction of the camp; attempted escapes by prisoners; the evacuation of the entire camp to Dachau; the bombing of the train by American forces; trucks and barracks full of bodies at Dachau, presumably left there because camp guards did not have time to burn them as American forces approached; and his liberation by the Americans.

Some video files begin with 10-60 seconds of color bars.
Franz Thaler
interview:  2009 December 07
1 videocassette (DVCAM) : sound, color ; 1/4 in..
Credit Line
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, courtesy of the Jeff and Toby Herr Foundation
Record last modified: 2020-05-04 15:48:39
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