Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Irene Sobel - September 8, 1998

Escaping to Białystok

Your father had come back.

My father came back, showed those guards some papers. I don't know what they were exactly. But they told him he can take my sister and me but not my mother. And I don't understand how it was and what it was. And they apparently decided that he should take us. My feet were frostbitten and so swollen that I couldn't put a shoe. I wo...put on, my mother put on my father's shoe on me and we had to because we had to walk for many hours through the forest. And the three of us walked in the forest what seemed like a whole night. Then we came to a little village or something and my favorite cousin whom I adored and he must have been by then a young man, maybe eighteen or whatever, was there waiting for us. And it was for me like heaven opened. I remember sleeping with him in my clothes and he was holding me. And I couldn't have thought of anything that would make me more happy. Then my father took us, my sister and me to some community where there are a lot of Jews, a lot of them. That was next to Białystok. There was a settlement, apparently there used to be an estate of some very wealthy person and I don't know how it came about that all the immigrant Jews who crossed the borders came there and the place was called Ignatki.

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