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Oral history interview with Gitla Klajman

Oral History | Accession Number: 2013.294.45 | RG Number: RG-50.693.0045

Gitla Klajman Greenbaum Shadman, born in Sosnowiec, Poland, on August 16, 1925, describes her family; completing seven years of elementary education until 1939; entering the Youth movement, Hashomer Hatzair, when she was 12 years old; learning many Hebrew songs; speaking Yiddish at home and being observant; feeling antisemitism starting in 1935; the boycotts of Jewish shops; the beginning of the war and her father being detain then released; volunteering with her sister to work; the deportation on May 14, 1942, and her father being taken; being sent with her family to a ghetto outside the city in mid-July 1942; working in a factory; being interned for three days in March 1943; the pack her mother provisioned for each of her children; being deported to a women’s camp in Germany, where she and her sister worked in the kitchen of a factory; their camp being within the purview of Gross-Rosen; conditions at the camp and her job in a textile factory; getting her hand caught in a machine on November 23, 1943 and receiving medical care; conditions in the camp in February 1945; the evacuation of the camp and walking for a day before being transported by cattle car to Bergen-Belsen; conditions in the camp and the epidemic of cholera and typhus; her sister contracting typhus; selling their hidden jewelry for potatoes; hearing shootings at night; the neighboring camp for Jewish Dutch families and an orphanage for Dutch children; being watched by Hungarian soldiers; being liberated and watching as a Dutch captain searched the camp for his family; the British Army finding that all the flour had been poisoned; the Red Cross arriving; being taken to the Bergen Belsen city, where she and her sister found friends and acquaintances from their town; the large Jewish community in Hanover; her uncle’s survival in northern France; receiving help from the OSE; meeting her brother-in-law in Paris, France and celebrating the liberation of Leon Blum; meeting her future husband, who had been at Buchenwald with Blum; training as a high fashion couturier; immigrating to Paraguay then going to Buenos Aires, Argentina, in February 1948; going to Arica, Chile, in 1962; her children and grandchildren; and the importance of giving her testimony.

Some video files begin with 10-60 seconds of color bars.
Klajman, Gitla
Stutman, Andrea
interview:  2011 April 29
Oral histories.
2 digital files : MOV.
Credit Line
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Fundación Memoria Viva
Record last modified: 2022-06-16 10:13:20
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