Oral History Interview with Sophie Roth

Sophie Roth, born in Zloczow, Poland, describes being one of four children in a religious family; the German bombing and invasion in 1939 and the killing of doctors and teachers by Germans, aided by Poles and Ukrainians; working in forced labor camps in Lazczow and Kosice until 1942 when she was shot and lost a leg; how a Polish teenager, whom she tutored, traveled to Lemberg to obtain a prosthesis for her; hiding in a fish barrel and then in a Polish peasant’s stable with her family, in exchange for money, jewelry, and the deed to their house; suffering from near-starvation and suffocating subliminal existence under a manure pile with nine other people; being forced to leave; her family finding shelter in an unheated basement of a Polish teacher, Elena Sczychovska, and her husband, who was the local police commandant; hiding with 14 people during the last year of the war; the hostility of neighbors when her family returned to their home; getting married in 1947 to a Hebrew teacher who lost his religious faith and his entire family; remaining a believer, attributing her survival to God’s miracles; the birth of her daughter in Paris, France in 1952; immigrating with aid from HIAS and the Jewish Family Service in Philadelphia; and her poems about horrendous Holocaust memories (she reads some of them during the recording).

Date: 03/09/1988
Interviewer: Carol Solotoff
Interviewee: Sophie Roth
Language: English
Subject: Faith (Judaism)
Forced labor.
Hiding places.
Holocaust survivors' writings.
Holocaust survivors.
Holocaust, Jewish (1939-1945)--Ukraine--Personal narratives.
Jewish women in the Holocaust.
Jews--Ukraine--Zolochiv (L'vivs'ka oblast')
Leg--Wounds and injuries.
Women concentration camp inmates.
World War, 1939-1945--Concentration camps--Slovakia.
World War, 1939-1945--Conscript labor.
World War, 1939-1945--Deportations from Ukraine.
Women--Personal narratives.
Košice (Slovakia)
Paris (France)
Ukraine--History--German occupation, 1941-1944.
United States--Emigration and immigration.
Zolochiv (L'vivs'ka oblast', Ukraine)
Roth, Sophie.
Location: Zolochiv, Ukraine
Łaszczów, Poland
Košice, Slovakia
Paris, France
Permalink: https://hoha.digitalcollections.gratzcollege.edu/item/oral-history-interview-with-sophie-roth/