Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Baruch Spergel - February 4, 2008

Saving Family from Vienna

What, what, what was your train trip like?

BS: Hmm?

What was your train trip like?

BS: My what?

Your train journey?

ZF: Your train journey.

Your journey on the train.

ZF: Your journey on the train from Prague to England.

BS: Ah, from Prague. The journey was, well it was...

ZF: It was an adventure.

BS: ...I can't remember much from that but there were, were boys like me and, and one thing I do remember that when we crossed from Germany to, to Holland the boys that came-there were boys that from-came from Germany spat on the German side before they left, yes. Because they had, they had experience with the Nazis. We had very little experience with Nazis.

So you hadn't heard about... Hmm?

You hadn't heard about what was going on in Germany.

ZF: Oh yes, we did.

BS: We heard, we heard.

ZF: We did hear, we did hear. We heard from family, too, from family. Uh, my father had a sister. She lived in Vienna...

BS: Vienna.

ZF: ...and uh, before they-the Czechoslovakia, Vienna was before that. And he had a hotel-he was a rich man-also had a hotel and a cinema there and the children grew up in this hotel and when the Germans marched in they took him right away to the Gestapo and they had to pay a lot of money to get him out and they'd hit him and God knows what. And my father somehow got false papers in Czechoslovakia and went with a taxi or something, some kind of car to get them out from, from, from, from uh, I don't know where they came to, to, to...

BS: Yes, to get them to...

ZF: ...to the Czech part, to...

BS: ...Prague.

ZF: ...Czechoslovakia.

BS: I don't know ???

ZF: And they told all the stories again, they told all the stories again.

BS: ..how they got them out. The entire family in Prague.

ZF: ??? I don't care, yeah.

So they were there during Kristallnacht?

ZF: Where?

They were in Vienna during Kristallnacht or they were in Prague?

ZF: No, no, no they were there, they were in Vienna-I don't know-no, Kristallnacht I don't know, I don't know where they were but they were already-the Germans had started taking the Jews out especially looking for the richer Jews and so on.

BS: That was in November wasn't it? It was, I mean...

Ninth through the 11th...

BS: November 11th.


ZF: I don't remember when they came, I don't remember. I can't remember.

BS: But they were very, very-they knew what Nazis were like. The, the eld...they had an el...son-the eldest son had took-when the Germans marched in they forced him to clean the streets, you know? They started in Vienna. They did-the Austrians were worse, worse Anti-Semites than the Germans.

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