Oral History

Preben Munch-Nielsen describes the precautions taken during boat crossings which took Jews to safety in Sweden

Preben was born to a Protestant family in Snekkersten, a small fishing village. The Germans invaded Denmark in 1940. Preben became a courier in the resistance. When the Gestapo (German Secret State Police) began hunting down Jews in Denmark in October 1943, Preben helped hide refugees in houses near the shore and led them to boats which took them to Sweden. Preben himself had to take refuge in Sweden in November 1943. He returned to Denmark in May 1945.


When we brought them down to the shore where the boat was waiting, we knew exactly when the boat would be there. We had some...the boat was normally stationed in Sweden and then we had every day that point there and there at that time. And then the boat would go in and, and we could, uh, have our passengers aboard. But it was rather safe because we did everything possible to secure the way from the houses down to the beach. [Interviewer asks: "What did secure mean?"] That they were not captured. That we were able to see there were no, uh, who could threaten them on the way. Also, they had to react in a special way--very silent. We had a problem with the children sometimes but we have our Dr. Gasfelds. He gave them injection, the children. But he was very afraid sometimes because he said, "I don't know this patient. How much may I...can I do?" But nothing happened. It was, they came over all and we...we never lost a passenger.


  • US Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection
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