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Oral history interview with Helena Manaster

Oral History | Digitized | Accession Number: 1993.A.0095.47 | RG Number: RG-50.163.0047

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    Oral history interview with Helena Manaster


    Interview Summary
    Helena Manaster, born on May 29, 1917 in Lesko, Poland, describes the Russian influence in the area after October 1939; her father losing his business and the family moving to L'viv, Ukraine; doing secretarial work in a Russian office; getting married to a medical student, Norbert Ramer, on September 22, 1940; sitting in a bunker for eight days with her family once the war began in Ukraine in June 1941; the creation of a ghetto in November 1941; her husband being employed by the Germans to fight typhus in Orelec, Poland and accompanying him there; living with Jewish peasants in Orelec; going to Olszanica with 120 other Jews and being released with her husband shortly before the 120 Jews were killed between Olszianica and Ustianowa; returning to Lesko; the first Aktion in the ghetto in July 1942; hiding during the Aktions; going with her husband to Radymno labor camp, where her husband worked as a doctor; the project finishing and getting false ID papers with the name Dobrowolska; being pregnant at the time; passing as non-Jews and going to Sosnica then Przemysl and Krakow to the homes of Polish friends; receiving help from the underground movement; staying in different places every night, separated from her husband for safety; working in the kitchen in a Capuchin monastery, pretending to be the wife of a Polish officer; the birth of her son Tadeusz on October 6, 1943; adopting another infant in November 1943; the baptism of her son; leaving the monastery in June 1944; getting an apartment with her husband in the winter of 1944-1945; the end of the war and hearing that her brother survived; staying in Warsaw, Poland for 10 years and having three more children; going to Vienna, Austria; going to Chicago, IL in December 1968 while her husband stayed in Poland; immigrating to Israel in 1982; and returning to the US in 1988.
    Helena Manaster
    Gail Schwartz
    interview:  1990 May 06

    Physical Details

    3 sound cassettes (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
    Manaster, Helena, 1917-

    Administrative Notes

    The interview with Helena Manaster was conducted on May 6, 1990 as part of the Jewish Community Council of Greater Washington's oral history project to document Washington, DC area survivor's experiences of the Holocaust. The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum received the interview on May 26, 1993.
    Record last modified:
    2023-11-16 08:19:50
    This page:

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