Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Selma Rich - July 17, 1984


We went on a train, I hided myself under the bench with two people. And the two men went into the bathroom when they saw they are looking for papers, and that's how we made to the border of Czechoslovakia, and then my husband was arrested. Why was he arrested?

This is 1945, right?

Nineteen forty-five, was in September.


Uh, he was wearing a good shirt, a nice one, but it was a army shirt and a army hat. And he was wearing a, a coat from the army, but it was very good because he was working for the army, they gave it to him, army clothes, Russian clothes. So they, and we had made papers, it's false papers, it was through a black marketeer, that we are going to visit Germany, because there is some relatives. When they arrested him I was running after him. He told me not to, but I went. And I start to speak to them, please. I say, why do you arrested him? They say, because he is in a uniform. I say, you know, what, he'll take off the uniform, he'll take off everything. Leave here, when we will go back you will give us. He say fine, they want only the clothes. So and I gave him to wear something else I took out and they let us go. They still catched a train and we came to Czechoslovakia.

Was the other person still on the train too? The fellow you were running with?



Yes. And when we came to Czechoslovakia, they gave us some food.


The, the Jews which were there. It was like a commune. And they said they want to go to Germany too, on the American side. But it's a problem, it's another border. When they are catching they send us back. So there were four people which were going back and forth. And they used to make money. But we didn't have any money to give. So but they, they felt so sorry for me. I was little and very skinny, I was maybe ninety-five pounds. And I say will you take us without money, please. We don't have. Said, in Jewish ??? it means let's go behind. And they let us go with them. But on the border they caught us, the Czechs. But they had whiskey and they had cigars and cigarettes and they gave to the, to the people which are watching the border. And they told us how to go. They say, you see the lights, be careful they shouldn't catch you. And there is a field from, from uh, grain, little high. Go on all the four, and we did. There we came to a big house, and this was already Germany. We came into this house. They hate us like poison, the Germans. But they had no other choice. These four people told them to, to take out the horse and buggy. They did, they were afraid. And they took us all in the horse and buggy, ten people, and they took us to a, a town ???. There was already a camp from Jews, a DP camp. This was for us Israel.

Was this...


the American side at this point?

Pardon me?

Were you near the Americans at this point in Germany?

Yes, this was already American...

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