Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Martin Koby - April 20, 1999

Trip to Ulm (continued)

A trunk.



A trunk, yeah. And they got a c...German carpenter and he was chiseling away there, between the boards you know, a passage to stuff the dollars in there.

I see. Hm.

Well, that's what you have to--you take it for--you don't ask questions.

Uh-huh, yeah.

You do what you are told to do and that's all there is to it. We got pl...we took pots and pans and silverware and this--and pillows and ah! Ridiculous. Take a blanket or two and something. They took all kind of--we got on the streetcar and the--we were stuffed with--with these four....

You carried all this in the streetcar?


All your things.

It was--ah! It was comic. But you know something? It worked out okay. Pillows you know, comforters ah, pots and pans.

What kind of car did you ride in on the train?

A passenger train.


We got on the train and it says we're going to go to Germany. Who knows where? You only do what you said--what you are told to. And some--who's in charge? No one was in charge. You got to keep quiet. You know, you--when Jews congregate you know, in one place, what's going to happen?

How many people?

Well, forty--fifty people.

That many? Okay.

The whole, the whole car was--you keep quiet. You don't turn the lights on bright. Uh, you don't run around. Just sit there and shut up ???.

And this was 1947?

I think this is late `46.


Late `46 we got on the train and choo choo choo, we're going all night.

All night to get ???...

Went all night. In the morning we get up somewheres, I don't know, in the middle of a field, the train stops. And there's Polish soldiers and Russian soldiers. And you have to get off the train. Everybody off the train...


...in the middle of nowhere in a field. We get off the train. It takes about an hour. It was a long wait. Maybe it was longer, who knows? I had no watches. You wait. "Okay, everybody on the train." We come on the train, a disaster. The suitcases were open. The luggage was thrown. Everything was mixed up with everybody else's and--disaster. No one said anything. No one complained. They gathered their things. They straightened it out. Mine is mine and yours is yours. We change it. And we got to Prague, the city of Prague. And we got somewheres in the afternoon. They unloaded us. Take it off. Don't say anything. Don't talk to strangers. Don't do anything, right? And we waited and we waited and we waited at the station. Big, big you know, railroad station.


Oh, beautiful. You never seen anything like that. Such high roofs and glass. Impressive. Hicks came to town.

© Board of Regents University of Michigan-Dearborn