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Oral history interview with John Komski

Oral History | Accession Number: 1995.A.1269.13 | RG Number: RG-50.470.0013

John Komski discusses being taken to Dachau concentration camp from camp Hersbruck and staying there for 20 days; being made to shower, but not being given anything to wear except a blanket; being in an area separated from the rest of the camp; finding on April 29, 1945 that the camp gates were open to the rest of the camp; finding clothes and standing for 2-3 hours for roll call, but no SS came; how the fighting began in the afternoon and then there was silence; some prisoners running to the gates, and some getting guns; a US soldier who came into the area and commanded that the guards surrender or be shot; how thousands of prisoners gathered and many had flags of different countries; seeing a glorious sunset with dark clouds in the east; some people lighting fires and cooking food; many of the former inmates dying from eating too much; being moved to a displaced persons (DP) camp; not being allowed to leave the DP camp; being very sick and moved to an American hospital; going to a DP camp outside of Munich in June 1945; UNRRA officials forcing people to be repatriated to their native countries; going to Garmisch, Germany; meeting an artist who was a former prisoner of Auschwitz, and receiving help from him; meeting his future wife; drawing and painting scenes from the concentration camps; and immigrating to the US.

Some video files begin with 10-60 seconds of color bars.
John Komski
Sandra Bradley
interview:  1995 February 14
1 videocassette (D2) : sound, color ; 3/4 in..
Record last modified: 2022-04-21 07:08:58
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