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Oral history interview with Judy Freeman

Oral History | Accession Number: 1997.A.0441.81 | RG Number: RG-50.462.0081

Judy Freeman, born on March 2, 1929 in Uzgorod in the Hungarian part of Czechoslovakia (now Uzhhorod, Ukraine), on March 2, 1929, describes her father, who was a baker; being educated in public school; the changes in Jewish life after the German occupation in August 1944; how Jews were herded into two temporary ghettos and then transported to Auschwitz in cattle cars; being separated from her family during a selection, processed, and taken to Jewish Lager C in Birkenau with 1000 young Jewish girls; the daily routine, roll calls, selections, and terrible conditions at Birkenau; devising several survival skills to keep her sanity and promised herself she would live to tell about her experiences; being sent to a gas chamber once and surviving; being selected to go to Guben, a small labor camp near Berlin, to work in an electronics component factory in November 1944; the attempts at sabotage by the slave laborers; the death march from Guben to Bergen-Belsen in January 1945; the horrible conditions and treatment of prisoners; the brutality by a Blockälteste at Bergen-Belsen; losing her will to live for the first time even though some hoarded jewelry saved her life at Bergen-Belsen during a typhus epidemic; being liberated by the British Army on April 15, 1945; the actions taken by Brigadier-General Grimm Hughes and British liberators vis-a-vis the survivors and the Germans; being hospitalized after liberation; returning to her hometown and smuggled into Munich, Germany with her new husband, who was also a survivor; living and working in two displaced persons camps, Gabersee and Wasserburg, for almost two years; arriving in the United States on September 21, 1947; receiving help from HIAS; and how they built a life and started a family, after a difficult beginning in New York.

Interviewee
Judy Freeman
Date
1985 April 21  (interview)
Language
English
Extent
1 sound cassette (60 min.).
Credit Line
The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, acquired from the Gratz College Hebrew Education Society
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Record last modified: 2018-01-22 10:57:00
This page: https://collections.ushmm.org/search/catalog/irn508722