Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Rose Wagner - August 14, 2002

Post-War Anti-Semitism

How long were you there?

Well in--well first we were in Poland. I mean, ŁódźWe left Łódź in 19... We didn't want to stay in Łódź because the Poles were terrible. Unbelievable. So we left at the end of 1945. And I was smuggling, I was you know, you couldn't go to Germany, you had to smuggle for money. So I and a cousin of my brother-in-law, we left first and we came to--what was the port city--Szczecin. Szczecin the port city. And there they had Russian with the big trucks. I mean people, not Russian, I mean they were Russian and we give them money and they smuggled us through the border.

Had you heard of Kielce?

Of who?




It's a city.

Did you know about the pogrom?

Yeah, we heard about it, the pogrom.

They were killing Jews in Poland again.

Yeah. Oh, the Poles were terrible.

How were they terrible? I mean, did they...

They just, do you know, it, if you walk in the street and you, you wore something nice they grabbed it. And they, they robbed. They came to the houses and they were robbing. We had two cousins, they came in the middle of the night, they were all, they had only a shirt, no shoes nothing. And we took them in, in our house, in our apartment. So we figured now is the time to leave. And my brother-in-law was doing quite well. What he was doing was making luggage. And in the luggage, the people that they have a little money, what they made, he, he hid them in the luggage.


You know what I mean?

Uh-huh, I see. It was also part of the black, black market.

A part of the black market. So they--when I, when I was crossing the border with other people and they put some straw on us and covers and blankets, in case, if the patrol will come, maybe they won't look. In the meantime, they look and they caught us.


The Russians.


And I was there in the--under house arrest. I was there maybe ten days, until they let us out. People were hiding in local breads. It's true. They were cutting the bread to see if people bringing something in. So then when I, I--then we went to Berlin. When they let us go, when they let me go with my cousin, we went to Berlin. In Berlin, I met my sister. My sister was still in Łódź when I left with my--she wasn't married to my brother-in-law yet.

I see, but she stayed.

But she, she was with him already and she was smuggling through the border and she came to Berlin. That was the closest point was Berlin. And in Berlin you had the Russian side and the English and the American side. So I was still on the Russian side. I didn't want to be on the Russian side, that's why I went to the American side. That's where I met my sister.

Didn't you have trouble crossing in...

Sure you had trouble. You had to be lucky not to be, not to be caught.


Everything was luck.

So, uh... Mazel.

Do you think everything was luck?

Sure. Everything was luck. A hundred percent.

No special skill, nothing.


In Auschwitz did people pray? Did they have religious services or anything?


Not that you remember.


Um, so you're in Berlin and how long were you there?

Oh in Berlin we were quite awhile. Let's see, we came to Frankfurt, we came in nineteen-forty--1946, not that long, a couple months I would say.

In Berlin.

In Berlin, yeah. We were a couple months.

Did you work there?


Did you work there?

No, no. No, the Joint....

I see.

gave us some coupons you know, to buy things.


And then we were smuggling again to go on the American, to go to Frankfurt. We had to go into Braunschweig I think so to Braunschweig to go to, in order to go to Frankfurt.

© Board of Regents University of Michigan-Dearborn