Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Anne Eisenberg - May 11, 1982

Forced Labor

My father, my two brothers were among them. My mother was left again to take care of the children. And Pesach came, Pesach went, but right after Pesach at '44, we were told that we will have to gather together our few belongings. We will be taken to a closed in area. A little buggy came with one horse. Our family's belongings and my aunt's who had five children. We were taken to the ghetto. The ghetto was closed in on both sides. No one could come in or go out. Everyday the Germans came to see what they, what they co...what they could get though, get through the people. We were giving up everyday something. Then one day my father and my two brothers came home. But the happiness didn't last. We were cramped in. They took that one little--a two--room house, our family and the family that lived in there. We were all cramped in. We were sleeping wherever there was a empty space. But that too, as long as we were together it didn't matter. After four or five weeks in the ghetto, we were told we going to be taken to a, a new place. As I stated my fa...my brother was a furrier. We didn't know he will be taken. He had some fur he lined up that big dog just in case he will be taken to a field. At least he will have warmth, he was sure to take that along with some food and a little bit of clothing. But how much can one person carry. He got taken at night I think. It was in a synagogue. But nobody could sleep over there. The noise was too, too big. The children were restless. Following day we were taken out to the railroad. We were put, put in, between seventy and seventy-five people in that cattle train. Water was not given. ??? was shot on us and the destiny was unknown. Second day human stench started. Children were crying. Thirst had taken over. But to who can we complain? I--as a child, I could feel, now as actually, as a parent I could feel what our parents must have felt by looking at the children. Not being able to give them what we so knowingly want. [pause] Second--third day the train stopped. A little water was given. But that, that wasn't enough to fill our stomachs, even with liquid. The door was shut again and the things were on the move. The night before, just before we got there, I still see so vividly me standing near my father and how he sensed it that God knows how many of us will be left alive. And we were talking, I felt so close to him. For the children sleeping and everybody sleeping and me standing beside him. [pause] The night wore on. He somehow when other people got up, we laid down, I dozed off. It's not as easy as I thought...

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