Advanced Search

Learn About The Holocaust

Special Collections

My Saved Research

Login

Register

Help

Skip to main content

Oral history interview with Helmut Kobler

Oral History | Accession Number: 1999.A.0122.91 | RG Number: RG-50.477.0091

Helmut Kobler discusses his childhood in Vienna, Austria and Pohranice, Czechoslovakia; his experiences growing up with his Jewish father and Catholic mother; his experiences after the annexation of the Sudetenland in 1938; his mother's decision to move herself and her son to Brno, Czechoslovakia; the conditions they lived under; the Nazis' search for his father; being deported to a camp near Ivancice, Czechoslovakia in 1939; the camp’s transformation from a concentration camp to a forced labor camp; working as a coal miner at the camp; the camp’s liquidation in June 1942; being transferred to another labor camp near Oslavany; the work he continued as a coal miner; the conditions at the camp; the brutality of the Czech and German guards; being transferred in the summer of 1944 to a labor camp near Postoloprty (Postelberg), Czechoslovakia; working to construct an underground fuel pipeline; an accusation against him of sabotage; his subsequent imprisonment in Saaz, Czechoslovakia and Karlsbad, Germany; the brutality of the guards; the poor conditions there; his escape from Karlsbad while out on a labor detail; being recaptured in Brno; the executions he witnessed while imprisoned there; being transferred by cattle car to a prison in Mirosov; escaping from Mirosov in May 1945, a few days before liberation by the United States Army; the aid he received from refugee organizations after the war; reuniting with his mother; being educated as a mining engineer; defecting to the west with a sample of uranium ore; moving to Canada; immigrating to the United States.


Some video files begin with 10-60 seconds of color bars.
Interviewee
Helmut Kobler
Interviewer
Jake Birnberg
Peggy Coster
Date
interview:  1992 August 13
interview:  1992 November 23
interview:  1993 June 17
interview:  1993 September 09
interview:  1993 February 11
interview:  1994 March 11
Language
English
Extent
2 videocassettes (SVHS) : sound, color ; 1/2 in..
Credit Line
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Jewish Family and Children's Services of San Francisco, the Peninsula, Marin and Sonoma Counties
 
Record last modified: 2020-03-26 09:32:33
This page: https://collections.ushmm.org/search/catalog/irn508150