Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Miriam Monczyk-Laczkowska Ferber - December 7, 1999

Immigration to America

You're twenty years old.

I was twenty, I wasn't twenty.

Not quite twenty, nineteen.

In May I was going to be twenty years old. So I went to America and at the airport in uh, in New York, I was [laughs] interrogated by the, by the Americans because I belonged to the communist party, because I was in Zed Ames, which is like real heavy, you know, party, communist party. And I looked at them and I spoke a little bit of English already. I said to them, "What do you want from me? I'm from a communist country, I had to do what they wanted me to do." You know? I was sixteen, seventeen years old when I belonged to the, you know, I had no choice. Anyway, they let me through.

They let you through.

So here I'm pushing my buggy with all kinds of uh, you know, suitcases that I acquired in, in Belgium that people gave me gifts and, uh

No one came with you to New York? They put you on a plane alone.

Oh, I was old enough.


uh, and I see maybe fifty people waiting for me at the airport. But the only one that I know, I see through the window. I see Rabbi Hirsch. I see Rebbitsen Hirsch and I see their two children, Simele and Hirschel. Uh, Hirschel is already, he's over three years old, so he has his haircut but the payes are still hanging. And Simele is already, like, six years old. Um, or five years old. And I greet, greet them, of course, I greet the Hirsches because these are, not Rabbi Hirsch


but Rebbitsen Hirsch I kiss and I, the children come to me. Then, then I see two strange men. Again, come, like we love you so much. My uncles.

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