Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Alexander Schleifer - August 1, 1982

Dachau II

All right. Let's, let's talk about Dachau for just a second. Can you describe it as...

Well, actually, see, the Dachau--inside Dachau--we weren't inside Dachau. Again, all, always the prisoners who come in...

You were in a certain section...

The section, which one? Well, if you come, you are in a quarantine. So, before you get into Dachau and there are long barracks--I don't know how, how long they are each, each room. I don't know how many guys can they uh, you got triple deckers to sleep. So, inside Dachau we weren't. I didn't see inside Dachau. I--actually, you were outside the Dachau. [pause]

The area in which you were quarantined uh, what was it like?

Well, that's, that's a old establishment. That thing been there for quite a few years before I got there. They got latrines and uh, whatnot. The sanitation not uh, sanitation that we have but they have to have more because if you don't, they would have more problem with the, the sickness and whatnot. So, some of the details the guys would have to wash the things and whatnot. Those--the works what the guys was doin' in this particular barracks but wasn't workin' no place else.

If somebody did get uh, typhoid, what, what--was there any...was there anything that was done for them?

Well uh, as I said, by us this particular barracks nobody happened. They told my father--me and my father was taken out of there before it--whenever he got it. But, I never was told about it, see. I didn't know. I don't know exactly what had been done. Nine times out of ten everybody tried to hide and they didn't want to, didn't want to get in because they already knew if, if you are uh, not able you end up in, in the uh, the chamber someplace. They kill you so that's why everybody tried to stay to be able to work they'd do something.

You were there for a month?

Approximately a month.

And then?

Then we would get on this train and from Dachau they took us uh, in the vicinity of Garmisch-Partenkirchen. Over there was a lake. Everybody got out. They got us off the trains, took us all to the, to the lake and everybody thought now here is the last thing. They going to shoot us all and throw us in the lake. But the underground radio was announcing that the war is over. I think our commander had uh, got kind of fidgety That's why he did the thing and when we got there he took all the supplies and whatnot over there. That was during the day. At night, all the guards disappeared and the commander disappeared and we stayed there. Some of the guys at night already started runnin'--some of the uh, fellows--but we stayed. We slept there overnight and, you know, in that cold in April--the beginning of April, March, beginning of April--we stayed there and the next morning we went to the town.

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