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Oral history interview with Cecilie Klein-Pollack

Oral History | Digitized | Accession Number: 1994.A.0447.18 | RG Number: RG-50.042.0018

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    Oral history interview with Cecilie Klein-Pollack


    Interview Summary
    Cecilie Klein-Pollack discusses the deportation of her family from the ghetto in Hust, Hungary (now Khust, Ukraine) to Auschwitz concentration camp; her and her family's experiences upon arrival at Auschwitz, encountering Josef Mengele, and the death of her mother and young nephew in the gas chambers shortly thereafter; her experiences with Kapos and Blockälteste in Auschwitz and Birkenau; her sister's desire to commit suicide and her attempts to keep her sister alive; her memories of a young ballerina in her block who was forced to dance for the SS camp guards; her witness to the beating death of the ballerina and a poem that she wrote to memorialize the young dancer; her many delousing experiences in Auschwitz and Birkenau; her transport to Nuremberg where she and other female prisoners worked in a munitions factory; her time in Holleischen concentration camp in Czechoslovakia; the types of spiritual and religious resistance that she experienced in the camps; the cruel beatings that she and other prisoners received from SS guards in the camps; her time in Budapest, Hungary after World War II; and her memories of her mother as she was before her death in the Auschwitz gas chamber. During the interview, Cecilie Klein-Pollack recites her poem, "Ballerina," and reads a letter she wrote to her mother (a copy of the letter is located in the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Archives).
    Ms. Cecilie Klein-Pollack
    Sandra Bradley
    interview:  1992 February 26

    Physical Details

    4 film reels : color ; 16 mm.
    6 sound tape reels : analog, mono ; 7 in..
    2 videocassette (D2) : sound, color ; 3/4 in..

    Rights & Restrictions

    Conditions on Access
    Restrictions on access. See donor file.
    Conditions on Use
    Restrictions on use

    Keywords & Subjects

    Topical Term
    Ballerinas--Poland--Oswiecim. Blockälteste--Poland--Oswiecim. Concentration camp guards--Poland--Oswiecim. Concentration camp inmates--Religious life. Concentration camp inmates--Suicidal behavior. Disinfection and disinfectants--Poland--Oswiecim. Gas chambers--Poland--Oswiecim. Holocaust survivors--United States--Interviews. Holocaust, Jewish (1939-1945), in literature. Holocaust, Jewish (1939-1945)--Hungary--Personal narratives. Holocaust, Jewish (1939-1945)--Poetry. Jewish ghettos--Ukraine--Khust. Jewish women in the Holocaust. Jews--Suicidal behavior--Poland. Kapos--Poland--Oswiecim. Lice. Poetry. Prisoners--Abuse of. Sisters. Weapons industry--Germany--Nuremberg. World War, 1939-1945--Concentration camps--Czechoslovakia. World War, 1939-1945--Concentration camps--Germany--Nuremberg. World War, 1939-1945--Deportations from Hungary. World War, 1939-1945--Jewish resistance. Women--Personal narratives.

    Administrative Notes

    Sandra Bradley, a film production consultant for the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, conducted the interview with Cecilie Klein-Pollack on February 26, 1992, in Hallandale, Florida, in preparation for the making of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum exhibition film, "Testimony." The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Oral History branch received the films and tapes of the interview in August 1994. The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Archives received the films and tapes of the interview via transfer from the Oral History branch in February 1995.
    Funding Note
    The cataloging of this oral history interview has been supported by a grant from the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany.
    Record last modified:
    2022-07-28 19:52:08
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