Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Harry Praw - June 30, 1982

Being Transferred to Bergen-Belsen

And it was funny the last few days and again they loaded us again on train, on train cars. They gave us a whole loaf of bread about five pounds of bread--each prisoner a loaf. So we said, "Oh, I got five pounds of bread, now what am I going to do with it? I'm gonna put a piece for today and for tomorrow and for the next day and the next day," because we didn't know what's gonna--the next...

Uh-huh. You didn't know where you were going to wind up.

...it's gonna be a next day. The trouble was that within a half an hour the five pounds of bread were gone. We sat down and ate up a loaf of bread in a half hour--five pounds of bread. Then they loaded us again on the same, the same hotels and they took us out of this place--you never knew where you were going. And they loaded all of us in the cattle cars and they always, always found dead bodies in the trains during the night in the, in the ra...in the cars. So in the morning they opened up the door and threw them out just you throw out a dog but they treated a dog better than they treated us. Once in a while they opened the doors--I don't even remember if we could get out of the trains so they decided to give us a little water. Most of what we had to--it was, it was in March, it was still cold, you know, the cars--the inside of the cars were frozen...


...so we scraped the snow off the walls and that's how most of us survived until they took us to a place called Belsen--Bergen-Belsen. They dragged us around--they must have dragged us around for a week. It was a few miles but the cars were going back and forth, they had no place where to put us--no place to take us. The bombardment was so heavy day and night that they didn't know what to do with us but they always managed to drag us into the camp. They didn't let us out of the cars even during the heaviest bombardments. So, we came into Bergen-Belsen on the beginning of April. That was a military--German military camp that they evacuated. And uh, we got in there, we didn't have much food and we stayed there for about two weeks.

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