Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Bernard Hirsch - June 29, 1982

Life Before the War

Um, can you describe your life before the war?

Now before the war uh, we had a normal life in the house, like normal. We were eight children in the house, three brothers and five sisters. I was the, the fifth. And on my far...we had a little farm. We had a grocery, we had a bar in the house. Like uh, one Jew in a--in between sixty-five families in the town. My father was a religious person. Saturday we didn't work. We were working on the farm in uh, we, yeah we--I was going in school. All my sisters and brothers they were going to school. When I was young uh, before I went to a different school about forty miles from there, from there my father came. Uh, one year I was there uh, in the school. Otherwise, after when I became thirteen years I was in uh, in the--by my father working. High education I didn't had--I just had six grade--eight grade, excuse me, eight grade. And the same way my sisters and brothers they had. I had two sisters married. They had two, two children uh, each one had a child. And lived uh, was a, a normal living, working on the farm, selling, uh, uh, working in the grocery, working around the house. He didn't too much business like uh, running around from one uh, from one city to the other city to--everything what we did was just in town that we did business, in the same town where we were living. After uh, I had a brother in the army. When he came home then I had to go in the army. And mine army--he was in the army--regular army--Czechoslovakian. I was in the army when the Slovaks uh, with the Czechs uh, split. Slovaks they were for themself a country and the Czechs they were for themself a country. I was taken into the army not to the, not to the gun--to work, just like working.

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