Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Harry Praw - June 30, 1982

Moving to Frankfurt Am Main


And then I moved to the American sector to a placed called to Frankfurt Am Main and that was already a whole ci...whole Jewish city--a Jewish community. Eisenhower kicked out the Germans at the time. Otherwise, he cleared out the small town outside of Frankfurt.

So is that like the DP camp then?

Yeah, well that wasn't a camp but it was called a DP camp.

But the community, yeah.

Yeah, otherwise it was a German community, like Oak Park. So Eisenhower gave an order to evac...to kick them out of there and settle the Jews in there. And then it was like a Jewish shtetl, you know what a shtetl is?


A little Jewish community. And we were--we started--then we started checking and looking for survivors. We started looking for families. Some of them were lucky, some of them were unfortunately, were not that lucky. And uh, everybody was you might say living it up there then. We had a good time. I came to the United States in 19...

Did ever you think, excuse me--did you ever think of going back to, to your town?

Well we already see there were too many Jews. They came in from all the camps because they started, they started doing business. They had to find ways of surviving. And he c...the food that they gave us in the places was rationed and, you know, being that you were away for so long from it you didn't have anything yet and in order for you to survive you had to do what we called organize. So there was--you could--we traded with the Germans whatever you had, whatever came easy to you, you traded with the Germans. In other words, if you got a piece of butter, you grabbed a hold of a German and you said, "I got a piece of butter for you, give me a pair of shoes," or "I got cigarettes. I don't smoke. You give me a watch, you give me a..." And this is how we started...

Mm-hm. Yeah, like bartering.

Yeah and this is how we started trading and Jews started traveling from one camp to another just the word got around that there's a camp this place, a camp here, and a camp there, different towns, different cities. Then the Jews started getting together. We had started organizing clubs and uh, sports clubs, so we traveled from one camp to another and that's how we found out--that we started finding people from different cities like I found people from Łódź.

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