Protocol Nr. 3562

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Name: D. J.
Gender: female
Place of birth: Enying
Date of birth: 1907
Place of residence: Székesfehérvár
Occupation: housewife
Ghetto: Veszprém
Camps: Auschwitz, Studhof, Argenau, Thorn

The person in question has given us the following information: From Enying, 128 people were taken to the ghetto. Most of the Jews were tradesmen but there was a doctor and a lawyer among them too. The Jews lived in sound financial circumstances usually. We lived in comfortable circumstances too. The first arrests happened on 6th April. Almost all the Jews were arrested, with three exceptions. They arrested me as a communist and placed me under police surveillance. It was chief constable Dr. István Buda, who carried out the antisemitic decrees. Later he became prefect of Veszprém and became a close friend of László Endre. He was a very malignant man. Window breakings were an everyday occurrence. If Dr. Buda saw one of us in the street he shouted at us, abused Jews, insulted us. The gendarmerie, on the other hand, behaved correctly. They took such a hard line on our wearing the yellow star that, for example, my husband was arrested for 20 days because two points of his yellow star had not been sewed down. Only one such person lived in Enying who, on account of his military decorations, was exempt from Jewish laws. We were, of course, not allowed to leave the village, we were not allowed even to go out to the street. The Christian inhabitants treated us really nicely, but the intellectuals were very nasty. Everybody was afraid of talking to us or do anything for us, since Dr. Buda took such measures, which made everybody afraid of us. Once a woman approached me in the street, when Buda came to say: You traitor, are you not ashamed of speaking to a Jew? The Germans only marched across the village on 21st March. The behaved in an absolutely passive way towards us. The Gestapo came from Siófok and they took only one Jew with them, because he was said to have a secret radio. Mr. Buda wanted Enying to be free from Jews. At first they said they would gather us in Enying, but later they took us to Veszprém by car. According to the rule, we could take only three sets of clothes with us, but the gendarmes allowed us to take with us whatever we wanted. What we left behind was given to the people of Pét, who had lost their belongings at a bomb attack. We were taken to the Veszprém ghetto on 2nd June. There were two ghettos in Veszprém, one of them at the synagogue, the other one at the garrison of Komakut. Those from Veszprém were taken to the ghetto at the synagogue, the people from the neighborhood to the garrison of Komakut. There were about 1,080 of us there. A policeman watched over the gates. The garrison was a completely enclosed building. It was very dirty and untidy. We were continuously working and when we finally managed to tidy it up more or less, Mr. Buda, who visited us once, found it “too comfortable”. We provided the ghetto with food ourselves. They marked two hours every day when we could go to the market, but only five people could go out a day. The young people had to work; we worked in a garden, while others went to do agricultural work. The inhabitants of Veszprém had no opportunity and no possibility to give us food. We had already heard that the Jews were taken away from Székesfehérvár and we thought that they would take us too. Yet, we did not know where they were taking us even at our entrainment. We had to pack up within two hours. We could take to the cattle cars what we were able to carry and what we had managed to pack up within two hours. We took money and the most necessary things with us. We left heaps of food there, which we never got back, although they had said that they would put it into the cattle car. The gendarmerie had collected the wealthier people already before the entrainment and they took them for interrogation to get to know where they had put their jewelry, their money, etc. They beat up those from Veszprém very much, but in the ghetto of the garrison nobody was harmed. The entrainment happened around 25th June. It began at 10 o’clock in the morning and the train left around 6-7 o’clock in the evening. We went to Sárvár, where we arrived at 8 o’clock in the following morning. We were staying at the train station for some time and we were taken out of the train around noon. They took us to the silk factory where the internees were staying. The gendarmerie surveillance was more serious there. We could go shopping and supply us with food ourselves. They did not permit us to eat more than one plate of food. The SS took us over on 2nd July. The gendarmes behaved correctly, we could even send mail with their cooperation. On 4th July they searched us. The gendarmes took us to the elementary school and took away everything from us including our wedding rings, our money and clothes. They allowed us to keep food enough for three weeks. There the gendarmes treated us very nicely again. They entrained 2,400 of us on 6th July. That was the last transport, because the internees had already left, so they brought mixed couples from Zalaegerszeg to complete the transport with them. 60-70 people were travelling in one cattle car. We were given some bread for the journey and a bucket of water at every fifth or sixth station. At first they told us that we were going to Kassa. Than the Germans took us over again. They called from outside at every station, saying that if we did not collect our money for them, they would shot us dead. They were threatening us continuously. Two people escaped form the cattle car pretending to get off to fetch water, but they got caught and they were shot down before our eyes. We arrived in Auschwitz on the morning of 9th July. They detrained us within two hours. They let us get out of the train in a very polite way and they told us to leave our baggage there, since they would take them after us on trucks. Within a distance of about 200 meters Dr. Mengele and his men were standing at a crossroads. They selected us there. I was taken to Camp C.25. Thirty-two thousand of us stayed in one block, the rain flew in, so we had to be standing in a corner those times. We had to line up for roll call at 2 o’clock at night. They kept telling us that we would meet our relatives. We did not work. I stayed in Auschwitz till 15th August. Those who had strong legs and strong muscles were taken to work. That is why they took me to Stutthof too. We received new uniforms there. About 3,000 people were taken to Stutthof. The way from Auschwitz to there was two days long, but they gave us more or less enough food during the journey. Stutthof was a camp for rest, but there was a Gypsy lager there too. We were numbered there, I received number 67133. They disinfected us and we spent about ten days resting. Than they selected us again and they took 1,700 of us with a transport to Argenau. We travelled in carriages for about 2 days. The camp, which consisted of small Finnish wooden houses, was lying about 8-10 kilometres away from the train station. The Oberscharführer held a speech in which he told us not to feel like prisoners, since we were the labour servicemen of a friendly state. Although, they made us do the hardest types of work: cutting down a forest, digging trenches, driving piles into the ground. We did not get anything to eat for two days and there was no water either, they dug a well only after that. There was a reveille at half past four in the morning. We got half a litre of black coffee, than two hours of Appell followed, than a 8-10 kilometres long march with spades and equipment on us. Than the work started, which ended at two o’clock in the afternoon. Then we started to go back, and around four o’clock or half past four we got lunch, which consisted of some bran soup, thickened with flour and sour cream, 25 grams of margarine and 100-150 grams of bread. We worked with Polish foremen who treated us correctly at the first time but later they did not dare to be nice any longer. They brought us news sometimes. The older ones were not the followers of Hitler. On or around 10th October we had to leave the place within two hours, they said because the Russians were close. We went to Thorn by train and from there we went to work to Rosenberg. We could not live in Rosenberg, since the tents had been left in Thorn. We received Lithuanian SS- guards, who were continuously beating us. We did the same work as in Argenau, but here we dug anti-tank ditches too. One person had to dig a two metres long, 80 centimetres wide and 180 centimetres deep trench every day. At the same time we had to cut out sods and level the ground. We usually tried to help each other. There we did not even have shoes any more. We marched 10- 15 kilometres daily. After lining up for roll call we had to go to the forest to bring a whole pine tree from a distance of 8-10 kilometres. We had to cover the trench with it. 3 guards forced to the ground and beat up those who carried only a branch. Everybody had to carry a whole tree each. It happened there that a Polish foreman delivered a letter to a girl in Bromberg and brought a newspaper from there. Once the SS caught a foreman like that, they executed him as a traitor immediately and they took his family to Auschwitz. This ended every kind of help that we had received from outside. In December 16-18 of us died of hunger every day. It was mostly the younger people between 16 and 30 years, who could not suffer it. All of us had typhoid, we did not get medicine and the ill people received only half of the food rations. When Bromberg was being bombed, they did not give us bread as a punishment. They wanted a higher performance from us there. We had to dig two and a half meters long trenches, which had to be five meters wide, 180 centimetres deep on one side and 160 centimetres deep on the other. 4-5 people should have dug a trench like that, but 2-3 of these had already been ill, so we had to work instead of them too. The guards beat us, kicked us, pushed us into the trenches. They cut some people’s legs, and they beat others to a pulp. There was no water, we could not wash, so we became infested with lice completely. When ill people felt very sick already, they were given a bowl of vinegar, that was all the medical help they got. Those who did not work received only half of the food rations. We stayed there till 20th January. A large number of people died. I can tell, just to characterize the conditions, that we could not wash from 28th August to Christmas, when we received a 5 minutes long shower, because a disinfecting train of the Red Cross came then. 60 of us lived in a tent, everybody had a place of 30 centimetres, so if one of us turned round, the whole row had to turn also. Many people went to work wearing slippers or barefoot. On 19th January we received an order to go to work at a factory in Bromberg, because the work we had done was cancelled. They said that only those, who were able to march 50 kilometres without stopping should undertake it, because those who would get tired they would shoot down. Children and ill people had to stay there, and some volunteers could also stay, but all the others had to go. The Oberscharführer would not take more than 1,200 people with him. They selected 340 of us, among them healthy people, whose parents or siblings were left there, and we knew that those would be executed. Next morning we left. We had a one-hour long break on the first day. We were given a loaf of bread and nothing else for the march. On the second day they began to shoot people down. They always shot down the last row. There was no break on the second day; we could only rest while the last row was catching up with the first one. On the first day we marched 34 kilometres, on the second only 24. They locked us up in a hut made of canvas on the first night, on the second night in a sheep-fold among the sheep. We always marched until they found a place to lock us up. We reached Bromberg on the third day. At least 150-200 people were executed on the way. On the afternoon of the fourth day the Oberscharführer summoned the female block leaders and announced that the Russians were coming and that he would leave us, but we owed our lives to him, since all of the Lithuanian guards had wanted to execute us. On that afternoon we did not dare to go to the forest, but decided to wait. The German police occupied us that night, they formed rows of five from us and chased us forward. A lot of us decided to lie down and let them shoot us dead, because we were not able to suffer it any longer. Then a German police officer came to say to keep on till the evening, because we would receive hot food then. That was already the third day since we had got something to eat, and we could only bend down for some snow to be able to suffer the march somehow. We arrived in Kronowa in the evening; there they locked us up with the intention to execute us at night. During the night an air raid destroyed that part of the building in which we were staying, and the Russians arrived within an hour. Suddenly the door of the cell opened and there was a machine gun pointing at us. We thought that it was the time of execution but than we saw the red flag. There were another 5,500 political prisoners in the building, whom they also wanted to execute. This happened on 26th January. After two days of rest, the Russians accommodated us in the elementary school of Kronowa. On one night somebody, reportedly the Germans, set fire to the school and 36 people died in the fire. On the next day in the other school we wanted to sweep the lice up when a time bomb exploded. I got injured on three places and three or four people died. Then the whole transport, that is, 700 people were taken to Bromberg, where we were accommodated in wooden barracks saying that the transport to home would leave from there. We escaped and rested in an abandoned German flat for 11 days. There was no train, so we set forth to Krakow on foot. We arrived there around 15th February, but the Russians turned us out of the city. We escaped again and set off from Krakow on foot. Going sometimes on foot, sometimes by train we arrived in Sátoraljaújhely in March. On 10th March we arrived in Miskolc, where the local Jewry gave us a beautiful warm reception. I stayed in Miskolc for fourteen weeks, since, being injured, I was not able to go home and I received medical treatment there. Fights were going on Dunántúl (Transdanubia) , so we could not come home. Finally I could leave Miskolc on 22nd June, so I came home.
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