Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Joseph Klaiman - May 4, 1982

The Start of the War

It was October, so, so war had started. Was after...

That was when the German came into Łódź.

Came in, right.

Yeah. We was afraid the Germans going to take the Jewish people and I was thirteen years old this time, my mother was afraid that the Germans going to take me to, to camp or to kill me. Then when we came back to Łódź we couldn't--then became--Łódź became a, a ghetto. We couldn't go out no more and I was in the Łódź ghetto for four years.


I was working in the, in the metal oven, that's all.

That's the metal...

Metal, metal yeah.

...in the metal um, factory?

I was working, yeah.

What about your brothers?

My brother was working--he was too young--my brother was too young. There was--one brother was about three years old and one was about eight years old, five years apart.

Do you remember the name of the street that you lived on?

Yeah, my street was ??? 28.

And that's where you lived when they--even when it was ghettoized?

Yeah. And I live all the time, 'til--and my father was working in a hospital. And then comes a bad time my mother died. They couldn't find out what kind of sickness she had. And then later on my daughter--my father died. About a year later my daughter--my dad died because he didn't have--we didn't have enough food.

He died of starvation?

Starvation. And...

Who did you live with then? You were just a young boy.

I li...we moved to my aunt. She helped us a lot. All the children...

The--all three children.

...we live the most with our aunt, yeah.

How many people lived in this apartment?

How many people in this apartment? It was a small room, was a--lived about, about nine people.

Nine people in how many rooms?

One and a half.

One and a half.

That's right. It was very bad times. I was home all the time.

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