Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Rose Wagner - August 14, 2002

Conditions in Birkenau

Did you have a cup, a bowl, a tin, tin can, something?


Didn't they give you anything?

In Auschwitz when we went to the Appell they gave us food. So there was like one pot. We were standing in the--like five people, five women in the line. So the first one got the pot with food, with soup. So everybody was hitting her because they wanted to get a way, to get the pot, the pot from her.

So did everybody eat from the same pot?

From the same pot. And then they had those, to go the bathroom, I'm sure you saw it on the movies.

Long rows.

The long rows with the, with the opening.

And was there a S...Scheisskommando there?

Oh yeah and they were watching us. And some people went where the kitchen was. I don't remember, but I know. Where the--let's say the, the peeling from, from other things, from potatoes so they went in there, they're hungry, they grabbed that, so they, they could eat.

So the people who had...


kitchen duty were lucky, they could get garbage.

They ate garbage, yeah, they did. Now I, I can stay away from food. But not everybody can.

What about water?

We didn't get any water.

Nothing to drink.

Only--yeah. Only when we went to get, when we had the food. Once a day.


No, are you kidding? Coffee.

I mean, I've heard people say that they gave them some dark water which they called coffee.

You know, when I was already in Auschwitz it was late...

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