Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Sally Tuchklaper - March 2, 1983

Life in Blizyn

What kind of work did you do?

I think, I, I assigned right away to start working with my sewing. I was assigned right away. They ask me--and I worked in a shop too but there were various shops down there. Like uh, shoemaking uh, the uniforms to help them to make new ones and old ones. And there was other people who was in kitchens type thing. They assign people that was down there to work outside. You know, they ask--took people--it was--down there was a big uh, camp with a lot of work that they--we had to do our own work.

Was your sister with you at this time?

Yes, my sister was with me.

Did you have any word from the remaining members of your family in Radom?

No, after a few months my brother came to the same camp. My brother. So we were almost like together. But we were not together--separate barr...eh, barracks. So we were there. My other sister I never heard 'til after the war; I never knew where my other sister was.

How did you get along with the other prisoners or girls who worked?

We had to make the best of it. ??? the same, like. We had to make the best of it.

And what about food?

We were fed three times a day. You know, we had bread for eh, six people, you know, pieces and coffee. And [pause] for lunch, whatever they gave us down there: a sandwich or a piece of bread with a piece of salami or, you know, any other things--cheese. And soup, we eat at night.

Can you tell me something about the guards?

The guards? What can I tell you about the guards? They were, they were not sociable. Some of them were very hostile. Some of them screamed and said if we're not gonna do the things they wanted, they're gonna punish us. We had never any recreation. We were--after we came home from work we had to stay in the barracks already. And that's all.

Can you recall if there was any illness in the barracks?

Oh yes, in that camp we had the typhus--epidemic of typhus in that camp. A lot of them died.

Were there medical facilities?

Very little, very little. We had uh, happened to have in that camp a doctor from my hometown, and she established a uh, a dispensary and she did whatever he could but uh, many people just died in sleep and epidemic. I myself was laying--my sisters, brother the same time with the typhus. You know, your friends came they brought you a little bit of water and whatever they could uh, get it to feed you.

While you were at this labor camp were you yourself ever punished?


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