Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Mrs. Roemerfeld - 1982?

Camp Language

Did you understand German when you came to the camp?

No. No, but the German language is so close to Jewish...

That you understood.

...that uh, I understood what they meant and after awhile you learn. Especially if it comes to either you get the beating or you come.

What did they call you in the camps?


They called you by your number.


You were never referred to as a vermin or a little fly that flies over the garbage cans.

No, no.

No, okay. And, um....

Naturally they used obscene language, but uh, it didn't stick with me because I thought that's the way it's supposed to be. So I didn't uh, uh, pick that up, as you know as one of the beautiful habits that they had.

Um, did you feel terror? What were your feelings? You woke up in the morning, how did you feel about yourself the times that you were in the camp?

Well, it's ???...

Did your feelings change from different... You told me that you went to a, a block where they were eating each other's ears.

Yes, well I explained to you, it was just uh, uh, so tense that we couldn't wait until the truck came to get us away from that Block and into the gas chamber because uh, uh, we just uh, couldn't take this any longer. And uh, just people went crazy. Uh, they were just biting each other. But distinctly I remember the scene that one girl bit up another girl's ear and it was uh, literally hanging.

They hung each other.

No, ha...the ear was hanging...

Oh, the ear...

...from her head.



They were fighting with each other.

Blood was nothing unusual. Bodies were nothing unusual because uh, I stepped over bodies in the main Lagerstrasse. Uh, especially the Holland Jews. They couldn't take it. And the Greek Jews. They were very weak. They couldn't take the punishment. [pause] Well, do you want to hear my uh, uh, after Auschwitz? After Birkenau?

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