Polish Jewish inmate of Warta and Lodz Ghettos, Poland, 2/1940-8/1944; inmate in Auschwitz-Birkenau Concentration Camp in Poland, 8/1944-10/1944, Oederan Sub-camp, Flossenburg Concentration Camp, Germany, 10/1944-4/1945 and Theresienstadt Concentration Camp, Czechoslovakia, 4/1945-5/1945
REEL 1 Background in Warta, Poland, 1925-1939: family; degree of anti-Semitism experienced. Aspects of period as civilian in Warta, Poland, 1939-1940: arrival of sister at family home after German invasion of Poland, 9/1939; family move to Lodz after German air attacks, 9/1939; German treatment of religious uncle. Aspects of period as inmate in Warta Ghetto, Poland, 2/1940-7/1942: move into ghetto, 2/1940; treatment of Jewish inhabitants by German; relations with German burgomeister; work as nanny for German family.
REEL 2 Continues; saving father from round up of Jewish men; story of obtaining gardening work for father from German burgomeister; selection for deportation to Lodz Ghetto, 7/1942. Recollections of period as inmate in Lodz Ghetto, 7/1942-8/1944: conditions in ghetto; presence of sisters in ghetto; working in leather factory; contracting tuberculosis; deportation of sister Franja to Auschwitz Concentration Camp. Recollections of period as inmate in Auschwitz-Birkenau Concentration Camp in Poland, 8/1944-10/1944: conditions during train journey from Lodz Ghetto to Auschwitz-Birkenau Concentration Camp; arrival in camp.
REEL 3 Continues: selection and processing procedure; reaction to showering; accommodation in crowded barracks; selection of inmates for work; story of escaping selection for gassing after illness; ensuring she was selected for work by Dr Josef Mengele; character of Dr Josef Mengele and guard Irma Grese. Aspects of period as inmate in Oederan Sub-camp, Flossenburg Concentration Camp, Germany, 10/1944-4/1945: background to obtaining cleaning job; opinion of German female guards; period in camp hospital and physical condition. Aspects of period as inmate in Theresienstadt Concentration Camp, Czechoslovakia, 4/1945-5/1945: journey to camp, 4/1945; physical condition on liberation, 5/1945.
REEL 4 Continues: lack of awareness of liberation of camp by Soviet Army troops, 5/1945. Aspects of period as member of 'The Boys' in Windermere, GB, 1945: background to arrangements for her to go to GB; flight from Prague, Czechoslovakia to GB and friendship with Roman Halter; reception on arrival; rations; dental and medical treatment. Aspects of period as patient in sanatorium in Ashford, GB, 1945-1946: removal to sanatorium for health reasons; learning of sister Hella's survival and marriage; fate of extended family; fate of parents. Recollections of period as civilian in King's Langley and London, GB, 1946-1948: period at King's Langley; reaction to living with elderly couple in Golders Green; move to religious hostel in Shooter's Hill; socialising with 'The Boys' at Primrose Club in London.
REEL 5 Continues: socialising with other girls in Shooter's Hill hostel; story of her reaction to speaker who denied Holocaust at Speakers Corner in Hyde Park, London, 1946; account of meeting future husband after encounter at Speaker Corner; inability to talk about her experiences outside family; continuing health and psychological problems; financial situation in early years of marriage; visiting sister Hella in Germany, 1948.
REEL 6 Continues: refusal to emigrate with sister and brother-in-law to Israel, 1948; marriage to boyfriend on return from Germany, 1948. Reflections on Holocaust experience: reaction to visit to former concentration camp at Auschwitz-Birkenau Poland, 1998; impact of experiences on children and grandchildren; contact with '45 Club'; opinion of Holocaust museums; question of experiences on her Jewish religion and identity; daughter's religious outlook.
One of the most memorable elements of the Holocaust Exhibition is the video testimony by survivors which accompanies visitors along the route. But what happened to the survivors after the Second World War? How did they rebuild their lives in the years that followed their release from Nazi persecution?
As the Allies advanced across Europe at the end of the Second World War, they came across concentration camps filled with sick and starving prisoners. The first major camp to be liberated was Majdanek near Lublin, Poland in July 1944.