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Oral history interview with Max Roisman

Oral History | Digitized | Accession Number: 1997.A.0441.95 | RG Number: RG-50.462.0095

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    Oral history interview with Max Roisman


    Interview Summary
    Max Roisman, born July 25, 1913 in Warsaw, Poland, describes how in 1939, before the German invasion of Poland, he and his wife left Warsaw to go to Russia; stopping at the border and remaining in Slawatycza, Poland, where he worked with a local tailor for German SS border guards; being warned by an SS officer and hiding with his wife in a nearby town; going to Wohyn, Poland, posing as a gentile; using a sewing machine smuggled out of the Warsaw Ghetto and working as a tailor with a non-Jewish partner until he was ordered to work for the Germans as a tailor in Suchowola, an open labor camp; how on May 3, 1943 the camp was liquidated and workers were evacuated to Majdanek; signing up with his wife and brother-in-law to go to Auschwitz, unaware of the nature of the camp; being sent to Buna to work as a slave laborer for I.G. Farben Industry, then on a forced march to Gleiwitz, where they boarded a train to Oranienburg (a satellite camp of Sachsenhausen) to work in a brick factory; working as a tailor for the commandant of the camp, Major Heydrich, and being put in charge of four other tailors; obtaining food and clothing for other inmates and himself by trading stolen supplies; being wounded in April 1945 during an air raid; receiving excellent medical care due to the intervention of the camp commandant; hiding when the camp was evacuated and the German military ran away; the remaining survivors organizing to get food and water until the Russians liberated the camp; conditions at Oranienburg; receiving help from the Russians and traveling east across the border; being separated from his wife; being sheltered by a Polish family that had hidden him once before; reuniting with his wife; living in his wife’s hometown; moving to Reichenbach, Germany, where he opened a shop; living briefly in Israel; returning to Austria and working as a tailor for USEC; and immigrating to the United States with his wife and children in January 1956.
    Max Roisman
    interview:  1985 April 22
    Credit Line
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of the Gratz College Holocaust Oral History Archive

    Physical Details

    1 sound cassette (60 min.).

    Rights & Restrictions

    Conditions on Access
    There are no known restrictions on access to this material.
    Conditions on Use
    No restrictions on use

    Keywords & Subjects

    Personal Name
    Roisman, Max, 1913-

    Administrative Notes

    The Gratz College Holocaust Oral History Archive conducted the interview with Max Roisman in Philadelphia, Pa., on April 22, 1985. The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum received the tapes of the interview from Gratz College on October 17, 2000.
    Record last modified:
    2023-11-16 08:36:29
    This page:

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