Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Brenda Reiss - June 23, 1983

Life in the Łódź Ghetto II

Uh-huh. Um, can you tell me how the Łódź ghetto was run? How it, how it worked? Was there money printed or...

No, no, no, no, I had no money then. No, no, no money, no money, no money.

Did you have a Kennkarte or...

They got cards that were coming for uh, for the soups.


Over work no money was involved, no, no. My world's not caring for the money but for the real bread. Everything you're getting on the food stamps like here, you know.

How much food did you get there? Did you have enough to eat?

Me, because I was working in a kitchen I got it, but my sister don't got it, no, no. Sometimes she was coming to me to give her a little more, you know, but I cannot give it because I cannot take away from other people. When you take away, you take away the life from them. I--this was very hard. I cannot even do it. Me--sometimes when I worked I got it, but I cannot have to miss a day too. Even when I won't have to peel from the potatoes I must have a prescription from doctor when I throw ??? and the doctor give me a prescription. No, it was no food, no, no, no. Very unconvenient, dirty, very dirty, very--with lice, with everything. It was very bad. We went through so much Aktions, you know, they dragged me here--they, they take--took away. Every time they got a little Aktion to take away to, take away--we didn't know where. They took us away but where nobody knows it. Nobody knows. And they--I--took me to, to the Łódź ghetto. I was on ??? it was next to me a jail. This was terrible, with bugs--with everything to me. It was awful, awful. People cannot even understand the killing everyday and every minute was another one killed and for no reason, for no reason. They were next to--didn't told you. You always must walk on the middle in the street, never on the sidewalk. That's all six years I was walking on the middle in the street, even when I went to work. To work, sure, every time in the middle in the street. No money. Nobody got money. They said, no, no, no money ???.

What about clothing? How did you...

I have just when I went to Auschwitz they took me everything out. I was wearing one, one dress, eight, nine month, I don't know when I went to change it, it was too dirty. They cut my hair.

Yeah. My feet were swollen; I got through walking. I got frozen feet too now. I went through for six years. They gave me a good job. They did a good job.

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