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Oral history interview with Irika Hirschfield

Oral History | Accession Number: 1995.A.1284.6 | RG Number: RG-50.147.0006

Irika Hirschfeld describes the pre-war life for Jews in Krakow, Poland; the effect of antisemitism on the Jewish professional class; her husband studying chemistry; the German invasion and the Jewish persecution; the formation of Krakow Ghetto in 1941; the death of her mother; the liquidation of the ghetto in March 1943; forced labor in the ghetto: unloading coal, cleaning, and working in several factories; breaking stones in Płaszów; Amon Goeth's punishment; the selection for Oskar Schindler's Emalia in June 1943; the safety of Emalia, where there was protection from SS; the story of Schindler saving a particular Jew, Mr Lamus, from execution; work in Emalia; Schindler's concern for her health and how he passed cigarettes to Jews; the drawing up of the Brinnlitz list; an Australian pilot shot down over Emalia; the clothing in Emalia; her imprisonment in Auschwitz en route to Brinnlitz; arriving at Auschwitz, the procedures, Josef Mengele's selections, and her faith in Schindler; her arrival at Brinnlitz and disappointment at the conditions; the women's appearances upon their arrival at Brinnlitz; the harshness of Brinnlitz; her brother's punishment; the deteriorating conditions towards the end of the war; Schindler's birthday in 1945 and the motives for his speech; her feelings on Schindler's departure; and a post-war reunion.

Some video files begin with 10-60 seconds of color bars.
Irika Hirschfield
Jon Blair
interview:  1983 May 18
Documentary films.
1 sound cassette (90 min.).
Record last modified: 2020-04-07 10:59:55
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