Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Charlotte Firestone - March 11, 1982

Sexual Abuse

Can I ask you uh, a, a...

You know, I'm forgetting and then afterwards, I keep remembering.

That's fine. Uh, um, a difficult question. Have you ever, was there any kind of uh, sexual abuse that you know of?

I knew that you were going to ask me that. In Praust, there was a woman that she, they said, she had an affair with a--she ran away with the Hauptscharführer. After she ran away, then they said that they had an affair even then.

In the camp.

In the camp. She was from my home town.

So a Jewish, a Jewish girl...

A Jewish woman, Yeah.

Was anyone assaulted in the camp that you know of?

No. No. In fact, they had that building outside of the camp and ours was inside, you know. Where the wires were, they were walking around, you know...



Do you know if there were any prostitutes there?

No. I don't know all them, but, if there were, they didn't have a chance. But that woman, that particular woman, she was in the kitchen, you know and he could take her out. I never saw it, because we were so tired, it came nighttime, we went to lie down. In fact, you know, at nighttime, they didn't want to go out to that--you are reading and I'm talking--they didn't want to go, so we all had plates, you know and what we went to. We had the soup. Everybody had their own plate and we were making in the plate in the nighttime and we laid down, it was washed, we washed it out and they ate then...

Did most people do that?

Some of them.

In any of the camps, um, did you know, was there every any talk of uh, underground resistance in the camp, of people escaping?


It wasn't discussed at all.

No. There was no such thing. There was no such thing. Can you imagine that we were in Denmark? We could have been free there. We were afraid to go away from this Germans, because we didn't know how Denmark would, would react if you would come out to say that we are Jewish. We were like locked from the world, you know. We didn't know. We could have gone out already from, from uh, from the camp in Denmark and we didn't. We were scared. When I went out from the, from the camp, because at that time we were free already, we ran out and the, then the Danish people were spitting on us and we still were afraid to go out to say we are Jewish.

Because they thought you were Germans, you were with the Germans.

Yeah. That we went with the German.

All right, I want to hear that story, but a couple of more things about uh, before that. Um, do you remember the uh, the uh, at Auschwitz, what kind of, if any, cultural activity went on? I mean, was there music at Auschwitz? Do you remember?

When we arrived, there was music.

When you arrived. A live orch...

Live music.

Did you see them?


What did you think about that?

We just walked by, you know. We couldn't stay and listen or watch. There were Jewish women playing. But we didn't know nothing.

So in the middle of everything else, there was an orchestra playing. Did you ever see them again?

No. Never.

Did you ever hear anything about medical experiments at Auschwitz?

I'll tell you what it was, there uh, was a woman. I just knew her in Praust. She had twin girls. They were eight years old. They took the twin girls separate from her. I heard that. I didn't--but she never got the girls back, because we met in Prague.

The woman survived?

The woman survived.

The children didn't.

The children didn't.

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