The Holocaust

What were the conditions? -What are their stories?

Life in the Ghettos

Life in the ghettos was usually unbearable. Overcrowding was common. One apartment might have several families living in it. Plumbing broke down, and human waste was thrown in the streets along with the garbage. Contagious diseases spread rapidly in such cramped, unsanitary housing. People were always hungry. Germans deliberately tried to starve residents by allowing them to purchase only a small amount of bread, potatoes, and fat. Some residents had some money or valuables they could trade for food smuggled into the ghetto; others were forced to beg or steal to survive. During the long winters, heating fuel was scarce, and many people lacked adequate clothing. People weakened by hunger and exposure to the cold became easy victims of disease; tens of thousands died in the ghettos from illness, starvation, or cold. Some individuals killed themselves to escape their hopeless lives.

Auschwitz, also known as "The Camp of Death"

Those that had been sent to the right during the selection process on the ramp went through a dehumanizing process that turned them into camp prisoners. All of their clothes and any remaining personal belongings were taken from them and their hair was shorn completely off. They were given striped prison outfits and a pair of shoes, all of which were usually the wrong size. They were then registered, had their arms tattooed with a number, and transferred to one of Auschwitz's camps for forced labor. The new arrivals were then thrown into the cruel, hard, unfair, horrific world of camp life. Within their first week at Auschwitz, most new prisoners had discovered the fate of their loved ones that had been sent to the left. Some of the new prisoners never recovered from this news.

THEY LIVED TO TELL

Ellen Davis

Holocaust survivor tells her strory of how she was treated during the Holocaust.

Henry Parens

Henry Parens tells his story of his seperation from his mother.

Holocaust Twins

Twins Ludit Barnea and Lia Huber tell their story of experimentaion and joy