Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Miriam Troostwyk - May 28, 1998 and June 3, 1999

Events in Germany

Now, at, at your house, did you talk--before the war started, do you remember any conversations about what was going on in Germany?


So you were part of these conversations?


And, and what do you remember?

I was a part of everything. I uh, what they told me be...because um, they didn't have secrets from me and they didn't uh, they never said, "We will talk it over when she is in bed," or something.


They talked and I was listening. They were talking--not to me, but to each other and to my sister and my brother-in-law and I was listening. And then I mixed in sometimes.

So you knew who the Nazis were and who Hitler was and...

Yes, when uh, I knew that before the war already, because my father was always listening to the radio when Hitler was speaking from Germany. And I hated that voice, because it was a terrible voice! And he was always talking about Jews and everything and that frightened me.

What did you think? I mean, you're six, seven years old. What did you think about all this?

No, I was a little bit older. I was maybe eight--seven...


eight years.

So what, what does a seven--eight or eight year-old child think, in Holland?

Well, there was still no war so, uh...

Did it puzzle you, what he was saying about Jews?

Well, when he had it about the Jews, I was thinking, oh, why is my father listening to something like that? It's horrible. But I didn't say anything. I thought it was political and I uh, didn't uh, I was playing around with my...

Do you think your father and mother...

And my mother always said, "Oy! Oy vay, mir, oy!"


You know.

Do you think they, they had any idea that the war would come to Holland?

I don't think so, I don't--but they didn't have an opportunity to go somewhere else. I don't know--I mean, not in 1933, maybe.

You know what happened in the First World War?

Yeah--well, I don't know. We never discussed it...


because my father passed away in 1941. Uh, beginning of--no, beginning of 19--1942, or end of 1941.

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