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Oral history interview with Stanley Blake

Oral History | Accession Number: 1990.338.68 | RG Number: RG-50.037.0068

Stanley Blake, born in 1922 in Kielce, Poland, discusses growing up Catholic; growing up fatherless; the beginning of the war in 1939; joining Poland’s paramilitary against the German invasion; being captured; being sent on a transport to Darmstadt, Germany; doing forced labor on a farm in Eberstadt; escaping; being captured and imprisoned in Mannheim; being transferred to Bruchsal prison and staying there for several weeks; being sent to Welzheim concentration camp; taking a street car to work in the Stuttgart foundry; overhearing Czech/German intelligence (Stanley was able to speak and understand German) and sent a letter to the Polish underground; fleeing into the woods towards Poland and joining the Polish National resistance; his work with the underground movement; allowing himself to be captured again to obtain intelligence; doing forced labor on a farm and later as a mechanic in Hanover; hearing about the capture and hangings of his friends in the resistance; being referred to in the network as a “Lonesome Wolf”; escaping to Berlin; walking for seven days to Kraków, Poland; being sent back to Germany for intelligence in 1943; his job washing clothes for the German military; discovering containers that released smoke during air raids to obscure the ground; being caught with a pistol and being captured and tortured; being sent to Mauthausen concentration camp; conditions in the camp; having dysentery from turnip soup; doing forced labor on a railroad; Nazi’s constant counting; having an armband with a red triangle; the suicide attempts; escaping the camp with a friend to the mountain; seeing a tank; meeting up with American troops; spending three years in England; going to the United States in 1950; serving in the US Air Force in 1952; getting married in 1962; becoming a lithographer for Detroit News; visiting Poland; reuniting with his mother after 27 years apart; meeting his step-brother; and his thoughts on the loss of Jewish life during the war.


Some video files begin with 10-60 seconds of color bars.
Interviewee
Stanley Blake
Interviewer
Mrs. Toby Back
Date
interview:  1991 June 10
Language
English
Extent
1 videocassette (VHS) : sound, color ; 1/2 in..
 
Record last modified: 2020-03-26 09:35:14
This page: https://collections.ushmm.org/search/catalog/irn511830