Oral History Interview with Zenek Maor

Zenick Maor, born August 9, 1923, in Wloclawek, Poland, describes his religious, Jewish family; his father, who was a factory owner; his family living comfortably until the German occupation; pre-war life, including his Hashomer Hatzair activities; the German restrictions and brutalities in Wloclawek; his father’s arrest and detainment for ransom; his family fleeing to Warsaw in January 1940; working at the age of 16 in various forced labor brigades, including the Okecie airfield in Warsaw; life in the Warsaw ghetto, including the Jewish police and the Hashomer Hatzair network of underground schools; his family encouraging him to escape the ghetto in 1942 because of the lack of food; being sent to various labor camps; the difficult work conditions; his ongoing belief in his own survival; the reasons that people could not escape from labor camps or from Auschwitz; his arrival at Auschwitz in the summer of 1943; his initial belief in the slogan “Work Makes You Free”; being selected to be killed with the other children and avoiding it; life in the camp, including the daily routine, work, treatment by Kapos, and latrine communication between prisoners; the death march from January 17, 1945 to May 10, 1945; being liberated by the Russian Army; returning to Poland and learning that no one from his family survived; and immigrating to Palestine in April 1947.

Date: 10/20/1987
Interviewer: Sylvia Brockmon
Interviewee: Zenek Maor
Language: Yiddish
Subject: Concentration camp inmates--Selection process.
Death march survivors.
Death marches.
Forced labor.
Holocaust survivors.
Holocaust, Jewish (1939-1945)--Poland--Personal narratives.
Jewish ghettos--Poland--Warsaw.
Jewish youth--Poland--Societies and clubs.
Jews--Legal status, laws, etc.--Poland.
World War, 1939-1945--Conscript labor--Poland.
World War, 1939-1945--Deportations from Poland.
World War, 1939-1945--Underground movements--Poland--Warsaw.
Men--Personal narratives.
Location: Wloclawek, Poland
Auschwitz concentration camp
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