Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Hannah Fisk - January 24, 1983

SS Officer Offers an Escape

Then he came to me and he says like that, "You know, Miss Monczyk, I would like to take you with me to Chorzów--to Königshütte. My wife is going to put you in the basement and we're going to hide you." That was in 19...beginning 1944. "You don't have to stay here, don't worry, you can trust me." And I says to him, "Otto," then, I called him already Otto, he was already closer to me, "Listen, whatever going to happen with 360 girls, it's not going to happen with 359. I am staying. I can't go away from that--my sisters here. I'm not leaving them." Maybe he would hide me. He was fine, good, like gold. Used to bring me bread, every time. Used to bring me a piece of sausage in the pocket, you know. I happened to be lucky, you know, just plain lucky because that was only luck. When you survived Hitler now, you were lucky. Plain luck. And I was working in the factory, I told you there was prisoners--they became packages from Red Cross, you know, from England. He gave me a piece of candy or a piece of chocolate. Once a month we used to go for bread. So I gave the man--the baker--a piece of chocolate and he gave me bread. What do I need the chocolate if I have nothing to eat, you know? This way, you know, God was good to me. Three times I was standing in the Appell and one of the biggest--Himmler came to make a selection. And he always took out the big one, the strong one. He didn't want the girls what cannot work anymore. So two times the director took me out from the line. He says, "This girl, this girl I want. This girl. The stark, the stark." Stark means...


Yeah. He goes over to him and he says, "Herr Obersturmbannführer, I am very sorry." He had to address him, you know, he had high rank. "But this girl, I can't give it to you because she's working on every machine. I need her. I don't have another one to replace her." So the next time when he came, he knew already, because they called, you know. He come over in the barrack and he says--he called me Annie 'cause my name was Annie there--the Germans called me Annie. He says, "Annie, I would prefer if you sleep in the, in the factory tonight because tomorrow the Sturmbannführer is coming, again." Three times, he took me out from the line. I was saved. I wouldn't--he took out the girls and he sent them to Auschwitz, to Buchenwald--whatever was closer. That was my incident. Being in there for five years, can you believe it? To live with a fear like that?

What was his name? Do you recall?

The director?

Yes, the man who--Otto...



Five years, I was with him. But he was a nice guy. Like I say, not everybody was bad. Even the Germans what I work with them. They used to give me a piece of bread, they used to give me a hot potatoes, you know, but they hide it. They were afraid, too, because if they knew that they give a Jewish girl? It was sabotage. To give a Jewish girl a piece of bread, that was--she would go to Auschwitz just like I am.

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