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Oral history interview with George Tomashevich

Oral History | Accession Number: 1990.338.56 | RG Number: RG-50.037.0056

George Vid Tomashevick, born 1927 in Yugoslavia, describes his cosmopolitan Serbian family; the multilingual atmosphere of his home; the Serbs settling in the area in the 16th century and being orthodox while the Croatians are Roman Catholics and the tensions between these groups; his family living in Vocin, Croatia; attending high school in the nearby town, Virovitica, close to the Hungarian border; the German occupation beginning in 1941 and the division of the land into eleven parts; the persecution of the Jews, Serbs, and Romani; Jews having to wear a yellow star and the Serbs a red arm band; the government trying to force the Serbs to become Catholics, but most refused; a booklet he wrote about the Balkan Jews and their neighbors from 1940 to 1945; being arrested with his family in the fall of 1941 and spending six weeks in a concentration camp; being released and sent to Serbia; all of his immediate family surviving the war, but all but one of Jewish friends dying; antisemitism in Croatia; the Nazis establishing three concentration camps in Serbia; the atrocities that were committed; his views on the Nazi-collaborator Andrija Artukovic; receiving no schooling during the Nazi occupation of Serbia; working in a glass factory while his mother worked in a textile factory; his grandmother’s death from cancer in 1943; listening to the broadcasts by the BBC and the voice of America; being forced to steal food; his family moving to Belgrade, Serbia during the civil war; his brother (born in 1921) who was taken to Germany for forced labor, but fled in 1943 to the Allies and became a pilot; how his brother and sister also live in the United States; how no human group is immune to inhumanity; and the importance of not collectively blaming or praising of any group of people.

Some video files begin with 10-60 seconds of color bars.
George Tomashevich
Mrs. Toby Back
1 videocassette (VHS) : sound, color ; 1/2 in..
Record last modified: 2021-10-04 15:02:24
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