Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Isaac Engel - June 16 & 25, 1992

Witnessing Aktion

During the Aktion you went outside?


During the Aktion?

Yeah. This was, when people were already walking to the, to the, to the rynek, to the marketplace there. Old people were walking from everywhere. And uh, that time they were allowed to leave the ghetto. To let 'em leave the ghetto. So I went outside and I brought in a few pails with water. I want to make sure they have enough water inside. And then uh, and bread they had inside. They had, my mother had baked bread before. And the, and, and that's it. So I want to make sure that they had. And they had--and I filled it up. We had a barrel like, it was glazed. It wasn't uh, galvanized, it was like glaze. When you see those pots and pans, some of 'em, they have, they are glaze. And I filled up this barrel with water. And I locked it, put the key in my pocket and I went out to the rynek. I didn't carry nothing with me. Just like I'm walking. Some people were schlepping uh, all kinda stuff with them. I didn't carry nothing with me. First of all I was sure that I will be back. That I will be, remain in the city, that I can help them out and there was no use to walk. So we knew it, what was going on. But in the meantime, when I went out in the rynek and when we all stood together, the ones they're working in there uh, but--for this company. Then the one SD-man came over and the superintendent from the company says to him, "This is mine uh, workers from ???." ??? they call me in German. So he looked at us. He was a cold guy. They say his name was Schipper, he was from Radom. You see, what they did, they organized, when they took out, the, there are some, one city they were using help from the other cities. 'Cause later when they clea...the, the other city they were taking the gendarme from our city there.

I see.

So that the, they were well organized. So uh, then they--this guy he was a tall man and he had a little stick on it and he looks at us and he says, "Go, take 'em away." So, then they send up--we were the first party to leave. A hundred length, five width. Five hundred people surrounded with Ukrainians in the back. It was about two or three Germans walking in the back. I didn't know 'em. They were not from our town, because we knew the gendarmes from our town. And that's it. We were the first party to go. So when I left already, went out and they took us out in a place where there is not houses so we can't, nobody can escape. There is an open, open field like ???. Took us out and that's when they took us to the railroad station. So I was looking right away a place where I--because I knew I wasn't going to go to the railroad station. No question about it.

Had you heard, had you heard of Treblinka?


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