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Oral history interview with Blanche Porway

Oral History | Accession Number: 2016.101.1 | RG Number: RG-50.106.0257

Some video files begin with 10-60 seconds of color bars.

Blanche Porway (née Bluma Fajnbuch), born on May 3, 1925 in Lodz, Poland, discusses her childhood; living in an elegant apartment in the center of the city; her father Leib, who owned a textile factory, and her mother Gitla; her siblings Sonja, Shulem, and Israel; going to a mostly Jewish public school; being a member of Betar; seeing Menachem Begin and Vladimir Jabotinsky in 1938; enjoying sports and reading books; the establishment of the ghetto in 1940; school being closed; wearing a yellow star; her whole family living in one bedroom in the ghetto with no plumbing; standing in line for rations; her father and 19 year old brother Sholem dying of starvation after two years; working in a factory making German uniforms and in an office; seeing Rumkowski publicly in the ghetto; being deported by cattle car to Auschwitz at end of 1944; trying to stay with her mother upon arrival but being pushed back to her sister; seeing her school friend hanging from an electrified fence; being given soup once a day; going after four weeks to Freiberg with her sister to work in an airplane parts factory; being transported in a cattle car to Mauthausen in February 1945 and seeing other girls eating grass during the journey; being liberated by a Jewish American soldier after two months; Polish prisoners killing some SS officers; staying three more months after liberation; returning to Lodz to see her apartment; meeting her future husband Hiller Porway, who was from Berlin; going with Hiller to Munich, Germany; her sister finding their brother Israel in Lodz; getting married in 1946; having a daughter; going to the United States after five years; her husband working in New Jersey in a furniture factory; having a second daughter; feeling that she has more in common with other survivors and that she is speaking for the 6 million victims; and feeling guilty that she could not save her mother during the selection process at Auschwitz.

Interviewee
Blanche Porway
Interviewer
Gail Schwartz
Date
2016 May 20  (interview)
Geography
creation : Chevy Chase (Md.)
Language
English
Extent
1 digital file : WAV.
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Record last modified: 2018-01-22 11:11:24
This page: https://collections.ushmm.org/search/catalog/irn539338