In Different Camps 1944-1945

I was there.

During the liquidation of the ghetto, she was deported to Auschwitz with the whole family on August 24, 1944. Her husband, parents and her little sister Inka were killed there. Only Halina and her sister Jadwiga and brother-in-law Arnold Mostowicz survived.

Halina was transported from Auschwitz to the Gross Rosen camp on 6 October 1944, and from there to Halbstadt, where she was liberated on 9 May 1945.

Halina Elczewska (1919-2013), Poland

Halina Elczewska (1919-2013), Poland

Consider here the time Halina spent in Auschwitz-Birkenau.

Selection in Auschwitz

After arrival  to Auschwitz Halina and her family go through first selection of the prisoners.

1) Listen to Halina’s memories of her arrival in Auschwitz. Answer the questions.

  • 1a. What was the selection in killing sites like Auschwitz-Birkenau?

  • 1b. What were the stages of the selection?

  • 1c. Why Halina’s mother did not want to take the baby?

  • 1d. What was the most traumatic experience for Halina during the selection?

The Horror of Auschwitz

Halina is taken to a barrack for women in the Birkenau camp.

2) Listen to Halina as she reveals what she learnt upon her arrival in Auschwitz barrack. Answer the questions.

  • 2a. What happened with the prisoners clothing? What they were wearing in the camp?

  • 2b. Why the testimony about selection is so important?

Loss of the Closest People

Halina goes through the hell of selection in Auschwitz

3) Listen about Halina’s loss in Auschwitz. Answer the questions.

  • 3a. What did Halina do to try to save her mother?

  • 3b. How Halina’s mother explained her refusal to be saved?