Lea is 17 years old in this picture. She is the one wearing a coat with a fur collar at the front to the left. The cornflower blue fabric came from her father’s shop. The photo, which was taken in 1941 in the Sosnowiec ghetto, also shows Lea’s friends of the same age.
I was there.
By order of the Germans, Lea and all the Jews were forced to move to a special part of town. If someone tried to escape they were shot by the guards.
On 12 August, the Jews were given an order to assemble at a large sports field. There they were divided into different groups and the Germans selected which of them were to be deported to Auschwitz.
Lea and two siblings ended up in a new ghetto in town where they had to carry out forced labour in various workshops and factories.
In January 1944, the last Jewish forced labourers were deported from Sosnowiec and the ghetto was liquidated.
Lea Gleitman (1924), Poland
Life in the Ghetto
Lea talks about being forcibly removed to a special part of town.
1) Listen to Lea as she talks about life in the ghetto. Then answer the following question:
My Mother and Younger Sister are Deported
Lea talks about the deportation of her mother Szprinca and her younger sister Balcia to Auschwitz.
2) Listen to Lea as she talks about the deportation. Then answer the following questions:
Forced Labour in the Ghetto
Lea talks about forced labour in the ghetto where even her brother Wowek, sister Miriam and cousins Sabina and Rachel were sent.
3) Listen to Lea as she talks about forced labour in the ghetto. Then look at the pictures and answer the following questions:
The letter in this picture was written by Lea’s mother Szprinca (also known as Sabina) in September 1940. In this letter she asks her brother in the USA whether he can take care of Lea’s older brother and sister and, in so doing, save them from the Nazis. There was sadly no way of getting them to the USA. The family’s adress in Sosnowiec is on the last page. The street had been given a German name and was called Weichselstrasse.
The Sosnowiec Ghetto is Liquidated
A slideshow about the liquidation of the Sosnowiec ghetto.