Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Stefa (Sarah) Sprecher Kupfer - July 24, 1987

Renting a Room

Did the woman know you were Jewish?

No. She did not know. Momma told her that the child has whooping cough and besides she is also hiding from the Germans because they want to send her for forced labor to Germany and not having a husband, she needs to be with her children. And the woman bought the story and rented us the place. It was a two room house. She occupied the second room and we were in the first one. And it was very good because she worked all day, she was a maid and she worked in the city. So she left in the morning and she came only at night. So all day long we were by ourselves. Except for one time she said, you know, your child is better and you have some neighbors here and your children never go play there, send the children to play with the neighbors. There was a house between Mrs. Orlewska's house and the one we were occupying, there was another house where a family lived. So Momma said, you got to go and play with the children, you know, or otherwise they will think that we are hiding. So, we went to that house and you know, every Polish house, has a lot of holy pictures on the wall, you know Jesus, Maria and all kinds of saints...and the minute we walk in my little sister says, and whose portrait is this on the wall? And, I said, that's it, they know us. And the little girl says, what do you mean? It is a picture of God. Don't you know? I gave her a little zat on the side and she quieted down. And I almost gave myself away too, because it was before Christmas or something and they were talking about the holidays and what are people doing and I said, by the way, when is Christmas this year? And the woman says to me, what do you mean? Don't you know it is always on the 25th, I said yes, I know it's on the 25th but what day, you know what day, what day is it coming out, I didn't know it was on the 25th. But I got out of it. Somehow, you know, there was always, there was never, never, a time that you, oh! I'm completely safe. This is where we are going to survive. This is how we are going to stay. There was every minute there something. There was a time where this woman was, I don't know if she was getting suspicious, or if she had enough, or she had really wanted the house for herself, but she kept saying, you know, your child is better and it's quiet now, they are not catching women so much to go to Germany, why don't you go back to your home town where you came from? Besides, my neighbors thinks that you are Jewish. So Momma said, well, I don't know, how can I prove to you that I am not, you know? Well, you want my brother to come and visit or something like that? She said, yeah that would be nice. So we had a friend to whom my Momma wrote, and he came and posed as our brother, as Momma's brother and our uncle.

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