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Oral history interview with Mayer Lief

Oral History | Digitized | Accession Number: 1993.A.0088.16 | RG Number: RG-50.002.0016

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    Oral history interview with Mayer Lief


    Interview Summary
    Mayer Lief, born August 18, 1908 in Lemberg, Galicia (Lʹviv, Ukraine), discusses his childhood; his schooling in Lemberg; experiencing antisemitism; his experiences in the Polish Army; his family's attempts to emigrate from Poland to the United States in 1939; the Russian occupation of Lemberg and Eastern Poland in 1939; the German invasion of the Soviet Union on June 22, 1941, and Mayer's capture that same day; digging mass graves for the Germans; the issuing of armbands and the establishment of the ghetto in Lemberg by the Germans; living in the ghetto beginning in November 1941; his move to and stay at German Army facilities until June 1943 due to his skills as a locksmith and safe cracker; his imprisonment in Janowska concentration camp in Ukraine in June 1943 and his eventual escape from the camp; his purchase of false papers in August 1943 in order to avoid capture by the Germans; his life in a suburb of Lemberg until the liberation by the Russians in 1944; traveling to Poland in 1946; his time in a displaced persons camp in Germany around 1946; immigrating to the United States in 1949; his time in Boston, MA and New York; arriving in Elizabeth, NJ and reuniting with his mother; his marriage in 1954; and his work since his arrival in the United States.
    Mayer Lief
    Sidney Langer
    interview:  1983
    Credit Line
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of the Holocaust Resource Center at Kean University

    Physical Details

    2 videocassettes (VHS) : sound, color ; 1/2 in..

    Rights & Restrictions

    Conditions on Access
    There are no known restrictions on access to this material.
    Conditions on Use
    No restrictions on use

    Keywords & Subjects

    Personal Name
    Lief, Mayer, 1908-

    Administrative Notes

    The interview was donated to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum along with other interviews between 1993 - 1997 by the Holocaust Resource Center at Kean College (now Kean University).
    Record last modified:
    2023-11-16 07:56:22
    This page:

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