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Conversations with Survivors

In the spring and summer of 2007, the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum hosted a public program series featuring survivors of the Lodz ghetto. The survivors discussed from their own personal perspectives what it was like to experience a community struggling to live in spite of the most difficult circumstances during the Holocaust. This public program was made possible by the Helena Rubinstein Foundation.

  • Leon Merrick: Lodz Ghetto Leon Merrick: Lodz Ghetto

    Leon Merrick discusses being forced to move into the ghetto in Lodz. In February 1940 Jews were uprooted from their homes and herded into the ghetto. The ghetto in Lodz was encircled in barbed wire and officially sealed from the outside world.

  • Leon Merrick: Hunger Leon Merrick: Hunger

    Leon Merrick discusses food rationing and hunger in the Lodz ghetto. Hunger and the need to earn money to buy food were constant torments in the ghetto.

  • Dr. Salomea Kape: School Dr. Salomea Kape: School

    Dr. Kape discusses school in the Lodz ghetto. School created an environment of normalcy for children in the midst of the miserable conditions in the ghetto. Through the schools children received one meal a day. This ration of soup, discussed by Dr. Kape, often meant the difference between life and death.

  • Dr. Salomea Kape: Conditions Dr. Salomea Kape: Conditions

    Despite difficult conditions in the ghetto, school created an environment of normalcy for the children. Dr. Kape tells of her experience singing in school in the Lodz ghetto, which lifted the spirits of the other students.

  • Chaim Kozienicki: Restrictions Chaim Kozienicki: Restrictions

    Chaim Kozienicki discusses the anti-Jewish restrictions implemented in Lodz after the German invasion of Poland in September 1939, and his family's forced relocation into the Lodz ghetto in March 1940.

  • Chaim Kozienicki: Youth Group Chaim Kozienicki: Youth Group

    Chaim Kozienicki discusses his experience as a member of a Zionist Youth Group in the Lodz ghetto.

  • Marian Turski: Labor Marian Turski: Labor

    In the autumn of 1941, after the ghetto schools were closed, more and more children took places in the labor force. In this clip, Marian Turski discusses the purpose of work in the Lodz ghetto.

  • Marian Turski: Deportation Marian Turski: Deportation

    Marian Turski discusses his deportation from the Lodz ghetto to Auschwitz-Birkenau in August 1944.