Oral History

Alan Zimm describes a hanging in the Dora-Mittelbau camp

The Germans occupied Kolo in 1939. In 1942 Alan was deported to the Lodz ghetto where he worked in food distribution. He took food each day to Mordechai Chaim Rumkowski, chairman of the Jewish council. In 1944 Alan was forced to unload trainloads of coal and munitions in Czestochowa. In 1945 he was sent to the Dora-Mittelbau camp. As the Soviet army advanced, the inmates were transferred to Bergen-Belsen, where British forces liberated them in April.


Beginning of March of '45, somebody sabotaged a part in the factory there. Not in our group. In another group. They destroyed a part of the...of a machine. Without the machine they couldn't finish the...the rocket. So they, they...without the part the rocket was unfinished. There was no way they could finish it. What they did, they took two hundred people from that compartment, from that group. And...uh...put gallows in the middle of the factory, in the tunnel and hanged every one of them. They hanged them in pairs, the two. And everybody working in that factory, had to go into the tunnel, line up, and walk through underneath the gallows where the the...those 200 people were hanging and come back to our work. They say, "See what's going to happen if you do the same thing what they did? You will hang."


  • Jewish Community Federation of Richmond
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