Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Joseph Rotbaum Ribo - July 5, 2005

Life at Home

Um, life at home was comfortable, warm?

It was austere. It wasn't rich. We were not a rich family. We lived from the pocket, how you call, from the hand to the mouth.

Hand to mouth...

And um, but we uh, were not hungry. We were not hungry.

Tell me about your mother. What was she like?

Mother was a very active and uh, person. She run the, the family, actually. Father was more outside. And she was run us, and eh, for education and for baby and for, and for eh, keeping the house and eh, shopping, and eh, things like this. She was a strong character, I would say stronger than my father in character. She was good-looking, blond...

Like you? You were also blond?

I was also blond, yes. And one of my sisters was also very blond.

Do you have memories of being sung to? Lullabies, Yiddish songs?


Anything like that?

No, no.

But she took...

We went to cheder, of course, we already talked about the cheder, but that's about all. No. There were no--on the market days, there would be some musicians walking around and put money, and playing, and some of them were singing. We would stand and listen to them from time to time, that's all.

So life in the town, it was very active?

It was active, yes, it was active.

And forty-five percent of the population was Jewish?

Forty to forty-five percent were Jewish.

Do you have any idea how long Jews had been in Głowaczów?

I can give you some eh, written information by a non-Jew, about it. The Jews of Głowaczów came from Latvia, I think, brought over there by a eh, eh, landlord...

Polish landlord?

Polish landlord that lived in the vicinity and wanted to eh, increase the business and eh, also eh, um, professionals like eh, eh, tailors and eh, carpenters and so on, and he knew, because he came from that region, and he brought over first group of Jews to Głowaczów.

So, sixteenth century then, right?

I think so, if I'm not mistaken. Something like that.

Because I have, also notes...

Pardon? I wrote it here?


Ah, I don't remember it.

Yeah. Here it is.

Ah, yes. So that's it. You've got it here... yeah.

In 1578, first Jews had permission to courthouses. And when did your family, you think, come to Głowaczów?

I don't know. I really don't know.

But your father was born there?

My father was born there, yes.

So at least...

And I think that my mother also, but I, I am not sure.

So at least two generations, at least?


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