The Germans occupied Krakow in 1939. Murray's family was confined to the Krakow ghetto along with the rest of the Jewish population of the city. In 1942, Murray and a brother were deported for forced labor in the nearby Plaszow camp. In May 1944, his brother was transferred to Auschwitz and Murray was sent to the Gross-Rosen camp in Germany. Murray was later transferred to Bruennlitz, in the Sudetenland, as a forced laborer for German industrialist Oskar Schindler. Schindler helped the Jews who worked for him survive the war. Murray was liberated in 1945.
We came to Bruennlitz. It was a different situation. Was a few SS people. There were no barbed wires. There was an old factory, and we supposed to fix up that factory. And Oskar Schindler was not happy that he took out eight or nine hundred Jews from Gross-osen. He went a few weeks later to Auschwitz, and got out three hundred women, and he said in Auschwitz that he need them to work. I can testify to you the only thing I saw them doing is getting wool, and knit sweaters for their husbands or boyfriends or friends, or socks, or gloves. Very little work did they do. A matter of fact, we all did very little work. We always was scared that something gonna happen, that he will be caught, because we did not produce a single piece of ammunition, not a single piece. Once we were told that he bought a carload of ammunition from another factory and delivered that it is from our factory. Once we were told that he kept saying, "Oh, I'm almost, almost there." And I have to, and he always...he welcomed us and he said, "You are the Schindler's Juden and in here you will survive."
We would like to thank The Crown and Goodman Family and the Abe and Ida Cooper Foundation for supporting the ongoing work to create content and resources for the Holocaust Encyclopedia. View the list of all donors.