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Oral history interview with Paula Ruthling

Oral History | Accession Number: 1997.A.0232 | RG Number: RG-50.524.0001

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

Paula Ruthling (née Pesla Brucha Rubin), born in Poland, describes going with her parents to Germany when she was two years old; living in Frankfurt, Germany in 1935; her parents’ divorce and living with her mother in Paris, France after 1935; the German occupation of Paris; not declaring their Jewish status; being arrested when her child was two years old; being told by the that she was to be shipped to Germany and her husband fainting; being moved from Karlsruhe to Auschwitz; her child being taken and her husband being sent to Dachau; being considered a political prisoner; the constant threat of death and gassing; conditions in the camp, including food, hygiene, lack of water, dressed in rags, and hair shorn; getting through selections and working in a factory; becoming ill and being put in the sick barrack; being tattooed; being sent to another camp; being taken to Hanover, Germany; working in a factory until they were liberated by Americans; returning to Paris; how she wrote letters to her husband in Dachau while she was in Auschwitz; hearing that her daughter was saved from going to Auschwitz by an interfaith couple who adopted her; reuniting with her daughter and husband; the suffering she endured in the camps; her time in Bergen-Belsen; Frankfurt before the war (she shows pictures); books she’s read about the Holocaust; and her inability to understand Hitler's desire to annihilate Jews.

Interviewee
Paula Ruthling
Date
approximately 1973  (interview)
Language
German
Extent
2 sound cassettes (90 min.).
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Record last modified: 2018-01-22 10:37:27
This page: https://collections.ushmm.org/search/catalog/irn509002