Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Ilya Martha Kessler - November 1, 1982

German Occupation II

Do you remember when you first saw uh, German soldiers coming in over there?

Where in, in the ghetto or in home?

In home.

In home, yeah, was seder was, yeah, seder. Because end of uh, end of Passover they took us. It was seder and uh, a German eat in our house. So, my... They used to make a seder in the dining room, like the nice ??? My father used to dress up ??? and uh, very nice seder, very nice. My mother cleaned the dishes and all my uncles, all my aunts came from the city and my mother's sisters and, and my father's uh, brothers. Everybody came. They used to cook like uh, thirty, forty, fifty people. My mother and my grandmother used to cook and everything. This seder, just we, we was six of us, six, seven, mine uncle--one of them lived with us too sometime--so seven. So, we needed ??? and my father uh, closed everything up, the ??? So, the German came here and he was so nice to us. And my little brother knew Jewish, you know, they didn't speak Jewish. I mean, Hungarian Jews didn't speak Jewish, just they knew a little bit. And the boys knew from the cheder. The girls didn't know so much. So, my little brother, he wasn't quite eight--year--old, start to talk to the German nicely and gave him candy and everything. He was so nice. So, my father asked him, "What you think if they going to take us?" Then he didn't know. You know, you didn't know from... It wasn't pity. We had a lady over there and in the city maybe put in, in the place where I was going two radios maybe were. So, my father has one. So, he used to put in the window and people came and listen. In 1942 they took us the radio because Jews couldn't have radio. So, some go ahead and my father used to go there and listen. So, we didn't know if they going to take us or not. So, my father asked him if what you think. He said, "No, everything..." They was lying always. They made that they are such a fine people. He said, "No, they're not going to take us." And, you know, you always believe what you want to believe. And after a couple days they took us and uh, they took to the ghetto.

You said the German was living with you in your home?

Uh, they took two to this place and they stopped there to, to sleep. So, they went to every house. So, they went to my house too and was sleeping in uh, in our house. I don't know was...

[interruption in interview]

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