Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Alice Lang Rosen - August 5, 1991

Being Taken by the Gestapo II

When they took you from, from Mannheim, they didn't say bring one suitcase or anything, just...

No, no. I don't remember taking nothing. In fact, I do remember them destroying the house. In fact, there were two of the um, guards that they pulled the bags apart, they literally tore--I remember that very clearly, they literally tore the bags apart and um, they just destroyed the whole, the whole house. Of course eventually, Mannheim was bombed anyway. Nothing was left, you know, in later years.

When you were taken out of the house, um, do you remember any people watching? Whether the neighbors--did they do anything?

I don't remember.

Uh, did you have friends that were non-Jews at the time?

Not, not then that I remember. Not, not then, no.

In Gurs is there anything--do, do you remember seeing or, or, um, hearing any violence? Do--was your father beaten? Was, uh...

No, my father wasn't beaten. In fact uh, uh, even though my father was in the textile business--and I know he had plans to come to America, you know, and we just didn't make it--but he went to barber's school and he be...he learned how to become a barber. And they used his skills in the concentration camp and that helped him.

When did he do this? Be...before you were taken away?

Yes, yes. And I think he learned that uh, with the thought of coming to America, and if, you know. if one life style wouldn't work out he would have something to fall back on to. And that helped him, and in, in part I think that might have helped keep him, him alive, you know, though all those years. Yes, he right away he was cutting, you know, the hair and shaving and, and I think that helped him survive--that helped us, in turn.

How long were you in Gurs, do you know?

I don't how long I was in Gurs. May...maybe not quite a year. I, I don't have any conception of, of time and we never really discussed much after that. I--it's too bad because everything is just coming up lately and it's just too late for me--there's no one left to talk about it.

Did anyone ever mention Madagascar? Did you ever hear the name of Madagascar?


Not while you were in the camp.

No, no. I don't remember that.

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