Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Felicia Shloss - February 9, 1983


How long were you Auschwitz?

Uh, we were maybe uh, two weeks, fifteen days.

And then what happened?

They, they took us out to--we were on the train again. That train ride was four, four days we went. Four days from uh, Auschwitz to Bergen-Belsen ???. Four days and four nights again in those uh, cattle, cattle uh, cars, whatever you call it. And we passed by beautiful places, because we got on the top and we want to look like here that little things to see how it's like, and uh, I guess we passed by beautiful German places, but it wasn't for us.

Did anything happen on the train that you remember specifically?

Uh, we had uh, a piece--we had a bread. One piece of bread, or one loaf of bread, I don't know. That's supposed to last us for the four days. And uh, it was again that kitty-corner for four days. If I tell you the truth, I didn't go to the bathroom for four days, my sister either. Some people didn't go--we just kept it in ourselves. It's unbelievable but we didn't go to the bathroom for four days.

Was your sister well at this time?

My sister, from Auschwitz to Bergen--yeah she was ok. And uh, it was very shortly before Bergen-Belsen they took off--it was the whole train, there were maybe thousands and thousands of people in that train. So they took one train off to Wilhelmburg--Wilhelmshaven, I believe it was, Wilhelmshaven. They supposed to go--it was on the French border, where French people were there, and they took down the people, what the Germans did with us--shaved, no luggage and just in one dress--and they didn't want us. They said uh, "Where is your luggage? How come you look like that?"

These were Germans?

I--they were Germans that--Germans on the French border I guess, or something. So they didn't want, and they came back and they told us later that uh, they could have gone to work, but they didn't want us. Maybe they were German-French--they spoke French, but it was on the borderline. Wilhelmshaven, I believe. Yeah.

How long were you in Bergen-Belsen?

In Bergen-Belsen we were maybe four or five weeks.

What did you do there?

Nothing. We didn't do anything there. We were in tents. We were sleeping on the floor, on the straw, nothing to cover yourself up, nothing. We were there for weeks, but we were one of the first from Auschwitz and uh, we were there for that time.

When was this, approximately?

It was in September, the beginning of October. Yeah, because we were at two weeks. In October--the beginning of October, it got already rainy and cool, and cold. And my sister got sick. I told you, I mentioned maybe here. And uh, a German came and in a German uniform--he must have been a doctor, I believe, and he was uh, trying to select people to work, and from there we went, we had a uh, ride from Bergen-Belsen to Salzwedel. It was a small town, but there were factories underground. Our factory was underground--ammunition factory. And on that train my sister was sick. But just leaving Bergen-Belsen--but we were lucky that uh, we left. And then there, she told me, "I can't swallow anymore. I'm stuck. I can't," and she had a fever too. And uh, between all the people that were uh, I guess she must have been a nurse, she could have been maybe thirty-years-old. And she said, "If you want your sister to be alive, I'm gonna tell you what she has to do and she has to do it, otherwise she won't be alive." And she took her urine and she uh, gargled and uh, it burned through and she had uh, sores on her face from the temperatures afterwards. And uh, somehow, I don't know why I got a piece of cloth--I saw some place, hanging. I think it was in uh, in Auschwitz, because after that they gave us clothes after the first selection. The first selection when we came from Łódź to Auschwitz they took everything away and then later you could of have things. And I made her like a babushka like and put around her neck. And we uh, we were also maybe twelve, thirteen hours on the, on the train from Bergen-Belsen to that Salzwedel. And I put her on the face and on the neck. And they, after the whole day and whole night counting us and counting uh, Zählappell, they took us straight to work for the night shift. And then we met, um...

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