Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Noemi Engel Ebenstein - July 22, 1996


Yeah. Was there another camp that your, that you and/or your mother...


...went to? What was that?

Uh, the name of that camp, uh, was Moosbierbaum. And after the selection in Strasshof, which I don't know how long it took, uh, we were sent to Moosbierbaum. And in Moosbierbaum, Moosbierbaum the camp, the labor camp was next to a POW camp, which had, uh, my mother said 30,000, uh, French POWs. Can it, I don't know whether it's a realistic number. But, um, these French POWs, um, were, uh, helpful in a way to the Jewish prisoners because, um, there was a trade of, uh, sex for food between the Jewish women of the camp. Now I want to read to you this, uh, little, uh, segment about my mother, um, "My mother traded her silk dress for a kilo sugar. Um, some, some women from the camp got together with the French, French POWs. Sex for food. My mother was unwilling to do that, but she was willing to be the interpreter since she knew French. Um, and she got a percentage of the deal." I used to have arguments with my mother about that. About her, her strict morality uh, "The woman who traded the sugar for the dress was in the camp with her mother, father, mother-in-law and son. Every night she would disappear and showed up in the morning with goodies. There was another woman, a woman whom my mother knew from Subotica, um, who said to my mother, 'you love yourself more than you love your children.'" Meaning, like, if you loved your children enough, you would do the same thing. Let alone you speak French. Um, but my mother had her own set of moral code. And I, I want to tell you another story that reflects that.

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