Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Hermina Vlasopolos - April 9, 1984


The following is an interview with Mrs. Vlasopolos at her home in St. Clair Shores of Michigan on the morning of April 9, 1984. Donna Miller is the interviewer.

Could you tell me your name?

My name is Hermina Vlasopolos.

What was your maiden name?

My maiden name was Grünberg.

Okay. And when and where were you born?

I was born in Bucharest in 1919, February 20. There is a discrepancy, you know, with my papers because that's what happened when we came from the communist country.

Okay. And can you tell me something about your life before the war?

Uh, as I said, I come from a quite religious family. And uh, I uh, I went to a boarding school. Then I finished my high school studies in Chernowitz, Bukovina where my grandmother lived. And I finished my college education there. I uh, as a young teacher I was, I was sent to uh, to Oradea Mare, which was in Transylvania. And uh, I taught in a, in, in a girls' high school. And uh, after two years the high school was closed by the uh, by the Nazis who took over. In, in a way the Hungarian Nazis that took over, you know, the government. They closed the Jewish schools. And uh, I had some private, I mean, I taught privately actually. There were uh, I had courses for about ten students, you know, every hour, hour because the parents not having where to send the children. They didn't want them, you know, to be without any education. Nobody thought that it will end into a Holocaust and every...anybody will be deported. You know, this was very well kept secret.


You know, we really didn't know a lot about that. And uh, so I, I mean I did have, I, I was able to make a living with my teaching. And uh, sometimes I, I took some other work. I embroidered some, I don't know, scarves, you know...


...for peasant women who, I don't know, like embroidered scarves and somebody gave 'em out. And uh, I had private students in private tutoring. And uh, before, before that as I, as I said, you know, I, I don't know how to explain it, I didn't even to have a family life due to the fact that my mother had died. My father was extremely busy and I was in a boarding school, but I didn't have a home to come to. I either came to one aunt or to another aunt during the weekend.

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