Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Henry Dorfman - August 11 & 25, 1989

Knowledge of Holocaust


...stuff hidden there in that place, I mean Jews. Uh, you know, people have stores, left uh, pieces of clothing, you know, this and that. So I figured we here of us, about seven, eight of us, we need--because my father found another guy later on, brought, brought him into, from, from my hometown, he escaped from someplace, I don't know. So we were all together, we were two, four, six, seven, eight--eight of us. And uh, so I saw things that were going on and happening more than the people in the concentration camps. There's all you can tell you about the concentration camp. But the behavior of the Gentiles to get rid of, of each individual--they helped to get rid of each individual Jew, Poles. And I heard it was happening in other, in other, in other countries too. Like Lat... Latvia, Lithva, Estonia, Ukraine ??? my area. It was terrible, terrible. There could have been thousands and thousands of Jews alive. Another thing, if America would have reacted in 1941-42, they would have saved half of the Jews. If they would have start bombing the concentration camps to destroy the, the ovens. What would have done the Germans? They couldn't shoot everybody. People would start running away, escaping. They were already demoralized themselves. But as long as they got the ovens and the trains, it was an easy job for them. Nobody got away. You see, the minds of the people. The people that they were hidden, we still were human, you understand. Because why? We had enough food. I didn't, I didn't uh, worry about food or about clothing. I had everything. We were just thinking how do we survive in the best--listen you got like a business, dealing with the goyim the best way you could. One, one day you told 'em something's going to happen to us, you going to be hanged and killed, the partisans are around here, you understand. We used our imagination, but we knew what was going on and getting the papers from England, from the partisans and, uh.

You knew what was happening in Treblinka.


You knew about it.


You heard--how did you hear this?

Oh we--I--we knew uh, from the people what. See two people that were with us escaped from Treblinka. From the same train where we jumped, see there was a lot of clothing, but they got in there. They, they, they buried the other. One told me that, my, my--that he buried my mother. She had a little girl, she had a little girl too. She died in the train. My mother didn't even--she just, she died in the train. And he took her off. Because they were--listen, that was--half of the people were dead on the train. They keep people for a, for a week on a train, locked. No water, no food, no nothing. Half the people were dead, so, I mean, like, stink. Terrible! So, you know, so the two of them escaped because they, they hide themselves under the, under the piles of clothing that the people took off. A whole bunch escaped but a lot of 'em got killed. They were lucky. And they come back to our area, my father took 'em in. But they didn't make the war anyway. ??? So, who knows ???. I'll tell you about it next time what happened.

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