Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Simon Cymerath - June 8, 1982

Outbreak of War

Let me, let's talk about when the war began a little bit.


Do you remember where you were when you heard that the war had started?


Where? I mean, precise place and how you heard.

Uh, the--we heard that uh, you know, when the uh, in the papers and on the radio that uh, Germany crossed uh, Poland, Gdansk, this was Gdinya, you know, Gdansk. And uh, they keep going and, you know, and the Polish, there's no way. And everybody shouldn't run away from the cities. Everybody should stay put and uh, the Germans are not going to bomb. The only thing they're going to bomb is factories. But meanwhile they didn't touch one factory, the Germans. Didn't bombed at all because the whole world took about two weeks and the Germans were already in Poland. When they stepped in, it took about maybe a month. And they started up right away uh, counting it, that the Jews got to uh, go and uh, register in the Jewish community and report to work everyday. Shoveling snow uh, sweep the streets, you know, right away they start with local work for the Germans because the Germans were occupied. You know, they took big buildings and they got in and they needed working people.

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