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Oral history interview with Armand Mednick

Oral History | Accession Number: 1997.A.0441.117 | RG Number: RG-50.462.0117

Armand Mednick, born in 1933 in Brussels, Belgium, describes being called “Avrum” by his Yiddish-speaking parents; growing up in a close family in Brussels; growing up feeling ostracized in a non-Jewish neighborhood and experiencing antisemitism that was influenced by the fascist Rex Party; contracting tuberculosis and being hospitalized at age six until May 1940, when his father, an active political leftist, fled with his family to France; his father being drafted into the French Army and deserted; being placed in a sanitarium at Clermont-Ferrand in the Auvergne Mountains under the new name “Armand”; his father, mother, and baby sister hiding nearby in Volvic, where they passed as Christians; recovering and joining his family; attending Catholic school; how at home there was some Jewish observance; his memories of walking for seven miles with his father to attend a clandestine seder; his father joining the French resistance in 1944 and the family returning in 1945 to Brussels; celebrating his bar mitzvah; his family moving to Philadelphia, PA in 1947; how the Buchenwald death lists confirmed that most of their extended family of 55 relatives were killed; becoming a potter and teacher; and producing a series of clay reliefs with symbolic Holocaust images, in an attempt to exorcise his painful childhood memories.

Interviewee
Mr. Armand Mednick
Date
1983 June 15  (interview)
Language
English
Extent
1 sound cassette (60 min.).
Credit Line
The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, acquired from the Gratz College Hebrew Education Society
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Record last modified: 2018-01-22 11:01:47
This page: https://collections.ushmm.org/search/catalog/irn515641