Introduction

The applicants describe

  • the return to Poland and the very often unsuccessful search for relatives in Poland and the return to West Germany (sometimes also out of fear of further persecution there, e.g. Jakob L.; David B.; Meyer B.; Basia S.; Bernard M.),
  • the stay in DP camps,
  • Emigration mostly to Israel (later possibly on to the USA) or to the USA.
  • the lasting psychological and physical damage caused by persecution

The following displaced person camps have been found in the files so far:

Bergen-Belsen, Berlin-Schlachtensee, Bettenhausen, Butzbach, Dieburg, Emden-Kaserne, Eschwege, Feldafing, Föhrenwald, Hanau, Heidenheim, Hessisch-Lichtenau, Hofgeismar/Kassel, Lampertheim, Landsberg, Landsberg/Lech, Leipheim, Schwandorf, Stuttgart-West, Tirschenreuth, Ulm, Wasseralfingen, Wetzlar, Zeilsheim

Information on Displaced Person Camps can be found  at ORT.

Henry Eichenbrenner

born on 28 December 1928 in Demblin/Poland. Statement from 1964.

Biography:  until July 1944 Demblin ghetto (airfield), July 1944 to January 1945 Krakow-Rakow concentration camp (metal factory), January 1945 to April 1945 Buchenwald concentration camp (carrying stones, cleaning up Weimar), then Theresienstadt concentration camp, 8. May 1945 liberation, Canada, 1963 USA.

and when I had recovered a little, I went back to my home town of Demblin in the hope of meeting some relatives. Unfortunately, they all died and I was the only one left alive. I went back to Germany and registered in Fuerth/Bay. as an emigrant to overseas and then emigrated from the Jewish Congress to Canada as an orphan

Jakob Eisenkraft

born on 15 November 1913 in Czernowitz/Romania.

Biography: 1939 Star of David, beginning  October 1941 Czernowitz ghetto,  until March 1944 Berschad, March 1944 liberation, Czernowitz, Romania, Yugoslavia, 26 November 1946  embarkation on "Rafiach" with 785 other passengers in Bakar/Croatia, sunk on 8 December 1946 off the island of Syrna/Syrnos, Cyprus, Israel

All my whereabouts and dates after the war: Czernowitz Romania via Yugoslavia to Cyprus. I was on the ship Rafiach, which sank in the Aegean Sea near the island of Cyrena. I was rescued by the British and came to Cyprus.

Note: For the time of the sinking, see "Jewish Independent", retrieved on 10.4.2022

Bernd-Dov Joseph

born on 16 February 1924 in Trempen/East Prussia

Biografie:1936 Polen, zurück  nach Deutschland, vermutlich September 1940 Einschiffung in  Tulccea/Donaudelta, November 1940 Haifa, "Quarantäne"  auf "Patria", 25.11.1940 Sprengung der Patria durch Mitglieder der jüdischen Untergrundbewegung Hagana, Internierung in Atlit.

The journey to Palestine took three months under terrible conditions. I contracted severe typhus on the ship. We were caught by the English and taken to the infamous 'Patria', which is known to have sunk in Haifa harbor. This was the final impetus to completely ruin my nerves. I was then interned in Atlitt for a few more months [...]

Henia Weissblum

 

born on 20.20.1914 in Kosow/Poland, widowed Jägermann, née Wassermann. Statement from 1956.

Biografie: 1939 Lodz; 9/1939 Judenstern, Zwangsarbeit Lodz; 1.5.1940 Schließung Ghetto; 11/1941 Deportation von Mann und Kind; 5/1943 Dworskagasse 6 Lebensmittelabt.; 10/1943 Herstellung von Kinderspielzeug; 8/1944 KZ Birkenau; (1 Woche); KZ Groß Rosen/Aussenlager  "Reichenbach, Fabrik "Hagenau" (vermutlich Langenbielau I,  "Reichenbach Sportschule",  Fabrik Hagenuk) ; 8.5.1945 Befreiung  durch sowjetische Truppen; Lodz; 1946 DP-Camp Fulda; illegal nach Israel mit „Exodus", (Einschiffung in Sete 11.7.1947); Rücktransport durch Engländer; 8.9.1947 Hamburg, DP-Camp Emden; 14.8.1948 Israel.

After the liberation I went to Lodz to the Kibbutz Misrachi and married my present husband Zische Weissblum. In 1946 we went back to Germany and were still there in the DP camp FULDA after January 1, 1947. We went to Israel on the illegal ship 'Exodus' and were forcibly taken back to Germany by the British to the DP camp EMDEN-KASERNE. Our daughter Ima Weissblum was born there on November 30, 1947, in the hospital in Sandhorst in the Aurich district. We immigrated to Israel on August 14, 1948

Fejga Zaborowski

born on 10  January 1915 in Opole/Poland, née Zalzman. Statement  from 1960.

Biography: 1939 Jewish star, early  1940 Opole ghetto, May 1942 deportation, 9/10 May  1942 escape, 1946-1948 DP camp Berlin-Schlachtensee, Wasseralfingen, March 1949 Israel .

We went to Lublin first. Those who had survived this difficult time gathered there. We were looked after by the Jewish committee. In June 1946 we came to Berlin-Schlachtensee with the intention of going to Palestine. My second daughter Leja was born there in May 1947. My older daughter Stella was born in Lublin in 1944, soon after our liberation. Since no immigration certificates were available for our onward migration to Palestine at that time and we did not want to join an illegal transport, we stayed in the Berlin-Schlachtensee DP camp until the summer of 1948 and were then transferred to the Wasseralfingen/Bavaria camp.
It was only after the state of Israel was established that we received our immigration papers and were able to immigrate here in March 1949

Psychological impact of persecution

Statements on the psychological consequences of persecution

"Through the persecution during the war, hard forced labor, and the terrible experiences, such as the loss of my family, I remained a nervous, sick person forever. My youth and the joy of life were destroyed, my health ruined forever." (Martin K.)

"I have no more energy for anything. I am very often depressed and start to cry. I use a lot of my energy to avoid living in a constant state of anxiety. I can't sleep properly because I'm constantly startled by images of the persecution. Suffer from severe headaches, combined with dizziness and nausea."

"Since the liberation he has slept badly; if anything during the day reminds him of the persecution, he finds it difficult to fall asleep. He still wakes up about once a week from persecution dreams. After such traumas he is so depressed the next day that he can't work. ... When he is overcome by crying, which happens frequently, he goes to the toilet. He is depressed almost all the time because he can't get what happened during the Nazi era out of his head. He is particularly depressed on Jewish holidays and days of remembrance. Then he reproaches himself for not having saved his mother. "Why did I stay alive? I'm no better than the others."

"As a result of these horrific events, the fear of death that lasted for years, the murder of his wife and three children - whereby he was an eyewitness to the murder of his twins - the murder of his parents and other family members, the severe physical and psychological deprivation, Ast. developed significant mental and psychological suffering." (The following are listed: "Sleep disturbances, progressively increasing tiredness and fatigue, memory and retentiveness, concentration disorders, periodic irritability, anxiety dreams, anxiety states that have no visible cause, jumpiness, attacks of palpitations for no reason, apathetic and depressive states.")

"The predominant complaints are persistent depression, abnormal excitability, headaches, concentration problems and constant feelings of anxiety. She is easily agitated, impatient with spouses and children... She is often plagued by painful memories. ... She is not only afraid of walking alone on the street, but also of being alone at home. 'I can't bear to be alone,' she says."