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Oral history interview with Fela Goldbaum

Oral History | Accession Number: 1996.A.0586.63 | RG Number: RG-50.407.0063

Fela Goldbaum, born on April 3, 1915 in Pabianice, Poland, discusses her parents; growing up in a close, religious, but not overly strict, family; living mainly among Jews; speaking Yiddish in the home and Polish outside; becoming a seamstress; the antisemitism among the local population; attempting unsuccessfully to immigrate to Palestine; being aware of Hitler’s anti-Jewish policies; her first contacts with the Germans following the invasion of Poland; attempting, unsuccessfully, to prevent the arrest of her brother; establishment of a ghetto in Pabianice and being forced to wear the yellow star; Jews establishing a Judenrat to deal with the Germans; the arrests of Jewish men; working as a seamstress while other women were forced to be “concubines”; having a special permit to leave the ghetto to work and being given special rations; being forced to sew Nazi flags; the closing of the ghetto in 1942; being rounded up by the Gestapo and marched to a field, where everyone was forced to spend the night; the separation of the young from the old; being sent to the Litzmannstadt Ghetto in Łódź; others being sent to Chelmno; continuing to work in a workshop in Litzmannstadt; marrying in order to get more time off under Judenrat policies; hiding from the Germans in 1944; being sent to Auschwitz in cattle cars with no food or water; seeing smoke coming from the chimneys; going through the selection; standing naked and having her hair cut; standing in the open for three days; being separated from her two sisters, Hana and Pearl (they survived); being sent to Mittelsteine to work; the daily routine in the camp; being taken on a forced march as the Russians approached; being freed by the Russians and returning to the camp barracks (for shelter); developing dysentery; going from village to village scrounging for food; marrying an acquaintance from Pabianice; returning to Pabianice; deciding to flee Poland and return to Germany; staying in the Landsberg displaced persons camp; giving birth to a son; immigrating in 1948 to Israel; becoming ill and returning to Germany for treatment; and moving to Australia.


Some video files begin with 10-60 seconds of color bars.
Interviewee
Fela Goldbaum
Interviewer
Phillip Maisel
Date
interview:  1996 July 10
Language
English
Extent
1 videocassette (VHS) : sound, color ; 1/2 in..
 
Record last modified: 2020-04-07 11:00:06
This page: https://collections.ushmm.org/search/catalog/irn505846