Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

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

The "Hunger Winter"

Did that--were ever..

So it was that, that last half a year, it was uh, very tough. And uh, uh, from the ??? uh, ??? uh, uh, how do I say that? They got uh, well, they thought, it will never be over, it takes so long.

This was the...

And we had to same and we ran out of money, everybody ran out of money. So we wrote it down, that after the war when we survive, we will earn money and first pay them off. This is what everybody did.

This was the Hunger Winter, wasn't it?

It was the Hunger Winter.


And the, the people from um, the underground uh, who always came and they didn't come with food, but they had rations, everything was all rations. And they made uh, that offices where they uh, give the rations to people, they came there and they--with mach... like bank robbers to...


to get the rations.

The ration cards?

And they got caught and they went to concentration camps and the--so they couldn't give us uh, rations anymore, they, they were in concentration camps where--somewhere.

Yeah. So you--the underground helped the Vandenbergs, is that what you're saying?


So what, what happened...

They helped us and we gave it to the Vandenbergs.

What, what happened when the--during the Hunger Winter? I mean, there's no food.

Well, there was always food. It was--downstairs there was um, uh, a big uh, drawer and there were always four or six breads in it, which they got from somebody or from the rations or from the bakers or...


whatever. And that was for the twenty-one people. And they always saved bread, so when it was old and they got from somebody new, then they took the old and they put uh, new there. And it was not closed, it was open. And there was um, like this that the bugs can't come to it.

You mean screen?


A screen in front of it.


So you--so...

They made a screen for it.

So no one was starving?

Well, they--we were starving...[laughs]


because my brother-in-law, he was already in bed. He couldn't walk anymore. Rosa uh, was on the foot. The um, well, Rosa was sitting, then was this here, was--it was only like skin.

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