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Oral history interview with Hilda Prooth

Oral History | Accession Number: 1993.A.0087.39 | RG Number: RG-50.091.0039

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

Hilda Prooth, born in Carlsbad (Karlovy Vary, Czech Republic) in 1904, describes her father, who was a painter and chose to become a Czech citizen after WWI; having three brothers and two sisters; the fates of her siblings, some of whom died in concentration camps; going to Prague, Czech Republic to earn a living as a governess; teaching German to Czech children; becoming a seamstress after the German occupation; meeting her husband, Mike, in 1939 in the Jewish community and getting married in 1940; coming under the protection of the Swedish government after she was married to Mike, who was Russian; being deported to Theresienstadt in 1943; being considered a Russian internee; being sent to Prague in 1944 then by train through Austria to an internment camp in Vittel, France; being liberated by the French in March 1945; being evacuated with a group of about 100 internees to the French Alps, to a former resort for asthmatic children; returning to Paris, France in August 1946 to get permission to return to Prague to find her husband; being sent to Epernay, France and traveling for three weeks in cattle cars back to Prague; reuniting with husband in Prague; working in an old printing house while her husband taught at the university; crossing into Germany in 1947; her husband working as an interpreter between the Jews and the Americans in Munich, Germany; waiting for passage to the US in displaced person camps in Bremen and Hamburg; going to Cleveland, OH in 1948; life in Cleveland and her husband’s death in 1960; working in the needle trades at Keller-Kohn and being very active in the ILGWU (International Ladies' Garment Workers' Union); and her reasons for volunteering to be interviewed for the Holocaust Archives Project of the Council of Jewish Women.

Interviewee
Hilda Prooth
Interviewer
Sidney Elsner
Date
1984 December 27  (interview)
Language
English
Extent
3 videocassettes (U-Matic) : sound, color ; 3/4 in..
Credit Line
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of the National Council of Jewish Women Cleveland Section