Born: 1921, Skrzynka, Poland
Describes conditions in Flossenbürg [Interview: 1990]
And there was just so many, so many bad things happening in Flossenbürg. The life, daily life was terrible. You get up 4:30...quick, quick, quick, quick, and go to the quarry, work twelve hours, six days a week, twelve hours a day. Sunday...Sunday before noon we do the chores, so-called, you know. Clean out your lockers, clean out the barrack, clean up yourselves, and everything. Then we had inspection, you know. If you had button missing or something like that, you was punished for that, see. So, it was clean. That time from the beginning was clean, I must say. Yes. Oh, they cut our hair every month, and every week they cut with the clippers in the middle, you know. Yeah. And then you work twelve hours a day. The food was...wasn't enough to survive no matter how strong you are for six months you know. The stronger peple I saw, in six months they die. Like in the morning you get only half a liter, what you call it...black coffee, ersatz coffee, so-called, made out of a bark... Then when you was working in a quarry, around nine o'clock they give you two slices of bread with margarine, as a heavy worker. Yeah. At noon, as you see on this picture what I got, we had, uh, soup. Soup. Cabbage, red cabbage. I though I'm never going to eat red cabbage in my life. Spinach. Spinach. Spinach...I says, "My gosh, spinach again," and that was watery, you know. There was no fat to it, see. So I thought as long as I going to live I never eat spinach. But I tell you something. I like spinach!
Julian's Catholic parents had settled in the United States, but his mother returned to Poland. In 1939, Julian was deported to Austria to do farm labor after he was caught for hiding a rifle. On the farm he met the landowner's daughter, Frieda, his future wife. He was arrested in 1941 because relationships between Austrians and Poles were considered illegal and in 1942 he was deported to the Flossenbürg camp in Germany. During a forced march in 1945, he was liberated by U.S. forces. Julian and Freida married after the war.
US Holocaust Memorial Museum - Collections