Zvi Griliches photograph collection
Document | Accession Number: 1999.83
The collection consists of thirty photographs relating to Zvi Griliches' childhood in Kovno (Kaunas), Lithuania and after World War II in the DP camp in Feldafing, Germany, and Israel.
- Document Creator
- Zvi Griliches
Zvi Griliches (born Grigory Griliches, also Harry or Garik, 1930-2000) was born September 12, 1930 in Kovno, Lithuania. His father, Efim, was trained as a chemical engineer but managed a cigarette factory that belonged to the Ziv family, and his mother, Clara Ziv Griliches, took care of the children. Garik’s younger sister, Ellen, was born in 1933. They spoke Russian at home and sent the children to the Hebrew Real Gymnasium in Kovno. The family lived at 26 Niemuno Street in Kovno but after the German invasion in August 1941, they were forced into a ghetto in the Slobodka suburb. The family lived together with Clara’s mother and sister. Efim worked for the labor department of the Jewish Council in the Kovno ghetto, while Clara had a job outside the ghetto in a rubber factory. In 1943 Zvi’s parents arranged for Ellen to be hidden in a Lithuanian orphanage. Zvi accompanied his mother to the rubber factory and worked alongside her.
On July 8, 1944, the Germans began liquidating the Kovno ghetto and deporting the Jews to concentration camps. Many Jews went into hiding, in underground bunkers. Zvi, his parents and some 20 other Jews hid in a bunker under their house. The Germans discovered them and they were deported to the Stutthof concentration camp. Zvi, his father, and other men were separated from the women and sent to Camp X, a sub-camp of Dachau. Clara volunteered to work in the Stutthof camp infirmary, where she contracted typhus and died sometime in fall of 1944. Zvi and his father worked in construction in Utting. Efim died of hunger and exhaustion on January 2, 1945 at the age of forty-nine.
In late April 1945 the prisoners from Utting were transferred to Dachau main camp and later forced on a death march. The American Army found them in Waakirchen village on May 2, 1945. The fourteen years old Zvi was taken to army hospital in Bad Tolz for medical treatment. Zvi joined his maternal uncle, Solly Ziv, in Munich and in 1946 he was reunited with his sister, Ellen, and his two cousins who were smuggled out of Kovno to Germany by Lea Olitzki, Solly’s sister-in-law. In the summer of 1946 Zvi joined Hashomer Hatzair, Zionist youth organization, in the Feldafing DP camp. In January 1947, Zvi and his group boarded SS Ha-ma’apil Ha-almoni from Sète, France to Tel Aviv. The British intercepted the ship and the passengers were taken to an internment camp in Larnaca, Cyprus. After about seven months Zvi was allowed into Palestine. He joined a Youth Aliyah group in kibbutz Eylon in the West Galilee. In September 1948 he enlisted in the Israeli army.
- Topical Term
- Personal Name
Griliches, Zvi, 1930-
Balson, Genia Griliches.
Held, Balfura Beinish.
Griliches, Sophie Rabinovitz.
Babun, Pepa Feinberg.
- Holder of Originals
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
- Legal Status
- Permanent Collection
- The photograph collection was donated to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in 1999 by Zvi Griliches.
- Conditions on Access
- There are no known restrictions on access to this material.
- Conditions on Use
- Material(s) in this collection may be protected by copyright and/or related rights. You do not require further permission from the Museum to use this material. The user is solely responsible for making a determination as to if and how the material may be used.
Record last modified: 2023-02-24 14:16:00
This page: https://collections.ushmm.org/search/catalog/irn517322