Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Esther Posner - March 11, 1986

Being Held at the Schouwburg Theater II

And the situation--it was a very terrible situation. There was no place to sleep except just on the floor and there were some small rooms upstairs where they separated men and women where, you know, men were in one room, women were in another. But the people who had been brought there when we were there were people from the old folks' home and people from mental institutions and people from uh, you know, the incurably ill. And uh, I was as frightened of these people who were just walking around and talking out loud and, and were just crazy. I, I was as scared of them as I was of the German, German soldiers around. And we were all just herded around the whole day long, you didn't know if it was morning, noon or night. If they said go to sleep we went to lay down, if they said it was eat, we ate. Uh, once a day they let us outside in a room about the size of this room, maybe twenty by twenty, and we all just stood there to get some fresh air. It was the courtyard of this--of the theater. And...

You said once a day, how many days were you there?

I'd say we were there about three days, each time. And then it was time--the names were called and it was time to just take your luggage and, and get on line to board the busses or the trucks. And our name was called and we were told to follow someone and we followed this person and we were taken up to a, a little room and we were told to sit on the floor. And we were told that it was because of my father's profession, that we were um, you know, it was so silly. I mean, there was no kosher meat in Ho...in all of Holland, so why they would exempt a kosher butcher was, was--there were so many times that things that were very unreasonable.

[interruption in interview]

And uh, we were told to just wait there. Somebody from the ??? arrived, took us up there and we just waited there.

Was it somebody that you knew?

No. I don't know. It, it may have been someone we knew, but it wasn't as if he had told us to go up there. Um, he had, had instructions, whoever it was that took us up there, that we were exempt from this particular trip. And after everyone--after the, the uh, trucks had left, it didn't seem like we waited that long. Some Nazi uh, soldiers came in and looked at us and strutted around the room and we were told we could go home. And we went home and uh, back to the family, and then it happened a second time. Can I tell you to turn it off for a minute?

[interruption in interview]

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