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Oral history interview with Hugo Herzog

Oral History | Accession Number: 2016.154.1 | RG Number: RG-50.106.0222

Hugo Herzog, born June 17, 1923 in Illingen, Germany, discusses his father Albert who owned a wallpaper and paint store, his mother Rosa, and his siblings Julius and Ruth; speaking German at home; experiencing antisemitism at age 10 and fighting back; being expelled from school after eighth grade; going to a Jewish school in Saarbrucken, Germany, which was closed after eight months; getting a job 200 miles away then going to Mannheim, Germany, where his brother was; going back home; seeing his synagogue being destroyed on Kristallnacht; going to Jewish Agency in Berlin, Germany and being accepted for a hasbara program in Cologne, Germany, where he slept in haystacks and ate farm food; going home to say goodbye to his family for the last time; going to Vienna, Austria and seeing anti-Jewish signs; traveling with a group of 15 year old boys and girls on the freighter "Patria" to Romania and then to Haifa, Palestine (Israel); the British not letting them land; the Haganah getting them clothes and food; living in Atlit, Palestine (Israel) for six months while working in the kitchen; moving to Kibbutz Ashdod Yakov; volunteering for the British Army in 1940; being trained and going to El Alamein (Alamayn, Egypt), Bengazi (Libya), and Tripoli (Libya); going to Italy by landing craft; returning to Illingen after the war and finding his brother; being discharged from the British Army in 1946; learning that his parents were deported to Auschwitz; washing dishes in a Tel Aviv restaurant; getting married in 1947; fighting with the Haganah in the War of Independence; working later as a crane operator; immigrating to the United States in 1953; and feeling very American and becoming less religious.

Some video files begin with 10-60 seconds of color bars.
Hugo Herzog
Gail Schwartz
interview:  2014 March 06
1 digital file : WAV.
Record last modified: 2020-03-26 09:27:40
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