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Oral history interview with Leslie Aigner and Eva Aigner

Oral History | Digitized | Accession Number: 2013.372.2 | RG Number: RG-50.764.0001

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    Oral history interview with Leslie Aigner and Eva Aigner


    Interview Summary
    Eva Aigner, born in 1937 in Košice, Czechoslovakia (Slovakia), discuss growing up in Czechoslovakia; the restrictions placed on Jews in Czechoslovakia; her family moving to Budapest, Hungary and her father having to do forced labor; experiencing antisemitism; conditions during the war; the death of her father; the deportation of her mother and her escape during the transport; Eva spending the last year of the war in the ghetto in Budapest; being marched to the river with other Jews to be shot and being rescued by her mother, who bribed a guard; and her mother’s message to her and her sister that they must make the most of their lives.
    Leslie “Les” Aigner, born in 1929 in Czechoslovakia (possibly Nové Zámky, Slovakia), describes the importance of studying the Holocaust; the Hungarian takeover of his hometown; growing up in Czechoslovakia and experiencing antisemitism; his family moving to Budapest and joining them in 1943; being a machinist; being forced into the ghetto; forced labor in the ghetto; the Arrow Cross; being taken to an abandoned brick factory; being deported to Auschwitz in July 1944; working in a kitchen and witnessing the hanging of Soviet prisoners of war; being in lager E; human experimentation in the camp; the suicide of inmates on the electric fence and having to remove the bodies; hearing the explosion of the crematorium; his transfer to Landsberg; marching to Kaufering and being offered food by German civilians as they walked; contracting typhus; being transferred to Dachau and his train being bombed by the Allies; hiding in the woods before being recaptured and sent by train to Dachau on a train filled with corpses; being liberated from Dachau on April 29, 1945 by American troops; his feeling upon liberation; returning home and not finding any family; reuniting with his sister and father in Budapest; meeting Eva after the war; and getting married.
    interview:  2009 October 27
    Credit Line
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Leslie Aigner

    Physical Details

    Oral histories.
    1 DVD.
    1 folder

    Rights & Restrictions

    Conditions on Access
    There are no known restrictions on access to this material.
    Conditions on Use
    Restrictions on use. The University of Oregon may retain copyright on the oral history.

    Keywords & Subjects

    Topical Term
    Antisemitism in education--Hungary. Antisemitism--Czechoslovakia. Antisemitism--Hungary. Child concentration camp inmates. Concentration camp inmates--Selection process. Concentration camp inmates--Suicidal behavior. Crematoriums--Poland. Forced labor. Holocaust survivors--Marriage. Holocaust survivors--United States--Interviews. Holocaust, Jewish (1939-1945)--Hungary--Personal narratives. Human experimentation in medicine--Poland. Jewish children in the Holocaust. Jewish ghettos--Hungary--Budapest. Jewish women in the Holocaust. Jews--Hungary--Budapest. Jews--Legal status, laws, etc.--Czechoslovakia. Jews--Legal status, laws, etc.--Hungary. Jews--Persecutions--Czechoslovakia. Jews--Slovakia--Košice. Mass murder--Hungary--Budapest. Massacre survivors--Hungary. Massacres--Hungary--Budapest. Mothers and daughters. Star of David badges. Typhus fever. World War, 1939-1945--Atrocities--Hungary. World War, 1939-1945--Concentration camps--Liberation. World War, 1939-1945--Conscript labor--Hungary. World War, 1939-1945--Deportations from Hungary.

    Administrative Notes

    Leslie and Eva Aigner donated their oral history interview to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in 2013.
    Record last modified:
    2023-11-16 09:31:45
    This page:

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