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Oral history interview with Ruth E. Greifer

Oral History | Accession Number: 1998.A.0142 | RG Number: RG-50.106.0104

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

Ruth Greifer (née Dahl), born May 30, 1922 in Geilenkirchen (near Aachen), Germany, discusses her father, who was a cattle dealer, and her Dutch mother; attending a private Catholic school and experiencing antisemitism but being treated well by the nuns; how the plaque on father’s business was shattered in 1938; moving to Valkenburg, Holland in the spring of 1938; Germans occupying the city on May 10, 1940 and her family hiding in catacombs during the bombing; having to wear the yellow star and obey curfew; her father’s business being taken away; the Germans ordering them to leave in June 1942, but she was allowed to stay because she was sick; her brother and two aunts being taken to Auschwitz; how a Mr. Jansen from the underground arranged for she and her parents to go into hiding; going to a coal miner’s house, while her parents went to another; being thought of as a risk and being relocated to a doctor’s house to be a maid; going into hiding at the Robertson’s house near Treebeek and Hoensbroek with another Jewish woman; getting money from the underground organization; hearing about the June 1944 invasion; going to a house in Treebeek; the heavy bombing in the city and hiding in a potato bin for three days; being liberated September 17, 1944; returning to her parents in Valkenburg; the loss of all of her mother’s Dutch family; sailing to the United states in the spring of 1948; settling with her sister in Pittsburgh, PA; getting married April 8, 1951 and having three daughters; moving to Washington, DC in 1957; and her feelings about Germany.

Interviewee
Ms. Ruth Greifer
Interviewer
Gail Schwartz
Date
1998 August 04  (interview)
Language
English
Extent
2 sound cassettes (74 min.).