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Oral history interview with Va'clav Kubík

Oral History | Accession Number: 2011.439.26 | RG Number: RG-50.675.0026

Václav Kubík, born 1920 in Nové Kopisty, Czech Republic, describes attending school in Terezín and not having any Jewish schoolmates; doing an apprenticeship in Terezín in 1940; working in a quarry in Libochovany, Czech Republic between 1940 and 1945; the three Jewish families who lived in Terezín before WWII; seeing the arrival of the first group of relocated Jews to Terezín and the restrictions placed on them; his life in Libochovany; witnessing transports of Jews to Terezín from Bohušovice; seeing people being brought by train to Bohušovice and marched to Terezín, escorted by Germans; seeing Terezín Jews building the “Jewish railway” from Bohušovice to Terezín; working in the quarry in Libochovany with prisoners of war from Russia, Poland, France, the United States, and the United Kingdom; being treated them badly by the German supervisors; the threats to and mistreatment of POWs; seeing Jewish women from the Terezín ghetto grazing sheep from Lidice after June 1942; the German laws barring German and Jewish sexual relations; how during the whole month of April 1945, he saw Jews form various concentration camps marching to Terezín; seeing numerous death marches of male prisoners near his house; seeing a death march of female prisoners on the other side of the Elbe river, during which the women carried a dead woman; trying to give food to the marching people along with his neighbors; volunteering with others to help stop the typhus epidemic at the Small Fortress at the end of the war; the arrival of Russian soldiers and their bad behavior; meeting his wife just before the war; his wife’s imprisonment for three months in Terezín fortress and the rest of the war in Ravensbrück concentration camp; his older sister, Marta, who raised him and married Mr. Košvanec; Mr. Košvanec efforts to smuggle food, medicine, and cigarettes into the Terezín ghetto; his wife’s imprisonment in the 1950s after being accused of illegal enrichment for trying to sell gold; Mr. Košvanec’s death soon after the war; being one of the 12 members of the local “Revolutionary Guard” in Nové Kopisty immediately after the war; and witnessing the execution of an SS officer in Litomerice.

Some video files begin with 10-60 seconds of color bars.
Va'clav Kubík
Adam Hradilek
interview:  2014 June 30
1 digital file : MPEG-4.
Credit Line
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, courtesy of the Jeff and Toby Herr Foundation
Record last modified: 2020-05-04 15:49:29
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