Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Felicia Shloss - February 9, 1983

Start of the War

In uh, at what point did uh, did this kind of activities stop?

In '39.

Right away?

Yes, the minute they came over to Łódź. The war started in September, and I believe a Tuesday, the same--next week the Germans were in Łódź.

Remember when they came in?

Oh yes, I remember them. They came in--we saw them coming with um, trucks. I--Poland didn't have that um, trucks and tanks and uh, they didn't have that. I remember we made uh, sandwiches and we gave to the soldiers, which came from um, the north, Poznan and Gdynia--Gdansk, whatever. My mother--we made sandwiches and then we were giving this food all the soldiers. They were walking and the others had trucks and tanks and you can't compare to German to the Polish army--the German army to the Polish army.

Was there any preparation in the city before the war? I mean when the war was...

Uh, the preparations were going on, I believe, the whole year. They used to put tapes on the windows and uh, they knew because they wanted to corridor...

Polish Corridor.

Yeah, Polish Corridor. I don't know. I was still young I didn't pay attention so much--going to school...

As a youngster what do you remember about the day the war started? Anything stand out?

Uh, I remember when the sirens start, you know, people--elderly women were falling on the floor and crying and screaming. I didn't know that because I was born after the war, after the First War, so I didn't know that it would be so terrible. And I remember the war started in--on Friday, and my brothers and I, we want to go to Warsaw--to defend Warsaw at that time. And we came to--we saw what we saw this week--we came uh, on a street, we--it was the way to Warsaw. And we want to go to Warsaw--walk to Warsaw. Can you imagine to walk to Warsaw? But there were already casualties. The Germans went down in their airplanes--same thing what you saw this week.


Yeah. They uh, lowered themselves down and they just killed with machine guns. People were hiding were in potatoes, in potatoes sto...the--how do you say? Potatoes were so high, so we were hiding--we were laying there in the day time and at night we walked home. We, we saw there was no way that we can go to Warsaw. There were already a lot of casualties on Sunday. Sunday all the people gave up, they went back home.

What did your parents think? Did they talk about leaving?

Well, my father believed in that German, German cultured people because we could have at least gone to Russia. It was so close. You just bought a ticket and uh, got off, I believe it was Białystok or Warsaw or some place. But he believed in the German culture and the German people. He said that uh, "No matter who is at the, at the power, or who is ruling--but the people that count." And he thought that the Russians were the brutals and the Germans were the cultured people.

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