Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Eugene Feldman - July 15, 1991

Conditions in Hiding

What did you do everyday? Day-to-day. Just stay in the shack.

Nothing. We couldn't--we didn't do nothing. We go pick berries, or s...you know. Things like, like that trying not to make path you know. And cook, like I say, you, you, potatoes it takes--really we couldn't uh, fill ourselves up. I don't remember what else we did. There was nothing to read. There was no books or anything. Dad was praying everyday you know, but that's, that's normal.

Did you also daven everyday?

I'm pretty sure we did.

And you had a bar mitzvah there?


Did you turn thirteen...


while you were in the forest?

Well, I didn't have to be thirteen. During the Russians somewhere there. During the Russian. It was before, right before the Germans came.

Now how, you were there--so you're in the shack. It was winter of 1941, you think? During that winter?

When did the Germans come into Russia?


Forty--I know, what month?

June '41.

No, it wouldn't be then because we would have been in the ghetto. It would have to be the next year I think.


It would be in '42.

Okay, that makes sense then. So this is 1942 in the winter, '42, '43.

Yeah. About round there, about that.

And what, what made you leave? You were almost discovered.

That's why we had to leave.

You had to leave.

Otherwise we would never leave.

So where did you go from there?

So we went to the larger woods, which you call uh, large trees anyway.

Is there a name?

It was higher ground.

Did the forest have a name?

I wouldn't have any idea.


To me a forest is a forest. And we dug ourselves a place to live in. We dug a, took us, I think, two, three days to dig it because we had to dig a six-by-ten or, a real large place for eight people to sleep in.

In a bunker?

But we slept only one day because they were discovered right away. A person was walking by, we could see people walk by there. So it's "oh," so we continued again someplace else. We couldn't--we didn't know where to go. Looks like that's when we started, continuing going and we heard somebody said, the partisans are down there, about ten miles or twenty miles further. So we just continued going. It was ??? they called it, a little village ???. I don't know exactly how far it's from us, but that's where the partisans were. How did dad find out? I don't know for sure. I mean, we, we never just sit down like a family talk, like sometimes people do here, try to explain the whole situation. I mean, the dad would decide what to do and that was it you know. Right or wrong. What, what, who else? We are kids. And mom has no voice in that probably. So we went to ??? and we did ri...realize how it was very nice there. No Germans. No Ukrainians, no nothing. Just partisans. The whole area was partisans. Controlled by the partisans.

Russian partisans.

Not necessarily.

© Board of Regents University of Michigan-Dearborn