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Oral history interview with Helen Wieder Fronda Bergman

Oral History | Digitized | Accession Number: 2017.553.2 | RG Number: RG-50.998.0002

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    Oral history interview with Helen Wieder Fronda Bergman

    Overview

    Interview Summary
    Helen Wieder, born on April 10, 1929 in Călinești in Maramureș County, Romania, describes being the oldest of six siblings; her father Herman Wieder, who was a blacksmith and mechanic and had his own forge; her mother Dora Dikker, who was a housewife; the northern part of Transylvania becoming Hungarian in August 1940; her father being called into the Hungarian army in 1940 (she assumes he was part of one of the labor battalions); her family's economic difficulties; learning to weave rugs from a Christian neighbor in order to sell carpets and support the family (this Christian neighbor offered to hide her when Helen's family was going to be deported, but Helen did not want to stay without her family); the Jewish religious practices in her household; the numerous Jewish families living in their area; antisemitism expressed by some of the Christians in the town; the deportation of Jewish residents in May 1944; arriving in Auschwitz at age 13 and being separated from her mother and her sisters; never seeing them again; going to a work camp, where she worked in an ammunition factory; her memories of liberation from Bergen-Belsen in April 1945; remaining in the camp until the first week of July 1945; arriving on July 8, 1945 by ship ( "Rönnskär") from Lübeck to Malmö, Sweden; being one of 10,000 refugees that Sweden accepted to receive; being quarantined and then convalescing in a sanatorium; going to Västerås, where she got work at ASEA (Allmänna Svenska Elektriska Aktiebolaget) in the workshop; not receiving further education; getting married to Raffaele Fronda, who was from Italy; not knowing any Jewish families who lived in Västerås before the survivors arrived; the survivors founding the Jewish association in Västerås; and not practicing Judaism since she moved to Sweden because she felt she needed her family to do so.
    Interviewee
    Helen Wieder Fronda Bergman
    Interviewer
    Carolyn Östberg
    Date
    interview:  2017 March 13
    Geography
    creation: Västerås (Sweden)
    Credit Line
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection

    Physical Details

    Language
    Swedish
    Extent
    1 digital file : MP4.

    Rights & Restrictions

    Conditions on Access
    There are no known restrictions on access to this material.
    Conditions on Use
    No restrictions on use

    Keywords & Subjects

    Administrative Notes

    Provenance
    This is a witness interview of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum's Perpetrators, Collaborators, and Witnesses: The Jeff and Toby Herr Testimony Initiative, a multi-year project to record the testimonies of non-Jewish witnesses to the Holocaust.
    Funding Note
    The production of this interview was made possible by Jeff and Toby Herr.
    The cataloging of this oral history interview has been supported by a grant from the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany.
    Record last modified:
    2023-11-16 09:41:28
    This page:
    https:​/​/collections.ushmm.org​/search​/catalog​/irn594408

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