Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Szymon Binke - June 16, 1997


Okay. So what, what was in Feldafing?

It was a big DP camp, Displaced Person camp.

What, what had it been before?

Oh, that was, that was a Hitler Youth camp.

Did you know that?

Well, sure. I, well, first we wa...we were in the barracks, but it was very crowded. Then one day uh, Eisenhower, General Eisenhower in those days, came to visit the camp and saw uh, our, how we live, so he held a speech for us and he went into a, to a building that we, that we used as a synagogue. So before he went in he took out, he took his gun and gave it to his uh, adjutant. He came, he walked in without, without his arms and he held a speech for us and said he, well, that he's gonna give us a little more uh, uh, uh, living facilities. So they, he, they, they cleaned out several of the villas which are up on the hill and uh, they gave 'em to us and we moved into one of those and I found in a basement there was a basement full of dishes. Everyone had the uh, the uh, sign of the uh, Hitler Youth, you know, NSDAP with the, uh...


Swastika and the round circle. Thousands and thousands of them. And we used them. We didn't wash dishes. Just used them and threw 'em out.

Did it bother you to eat off a Swastika?


Um, were you supervised at all by the--in the DP camp?

Yeah. Well, I started to go to school then.

They set up a school.


Did you go to shul? I mean, did you, if you set up a synagogue, did you go with your father to...

Uh, yeah, Saturday. Not, not as much as uh, before. You know, it's already went uh, didn't go every Saturday anymore.

Had you lost faith?

Uh, kind of.

Your father too?

Yes and no. Not, he wasn't as observant as he was before. He didn't keep kosher anymore. He'd go to shul maybe just the holidays.

Was there any davening that you remember in the camps?

Yeah, sure.

People prayed in the camps?


In Birkenau?

Oh, oh, you mean in, in concentration camp?


No. Not that I know of. Oh I thought the camps after the war.

After war. So in the DP camps there was.


Where did people get the, the, the, were there talaysim in there?


In the...

DP camp?


I don't remember. Well, you can daven without a tallit. You don't have to have a tallit to daven.

Was there a Aron Kodesh?

You think I can remember? I'm sure there was one.

Someone must have gotten one.

Yeah, yeah. Probably the uh, Joint or somebody brought in some.

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