#Repost @auschwitz.study.group (@get_repost)
Christmas in Auschwitz
Testimony of Karol Świętorzecki, Auschwitz prisoner number 5360
The very first Christmas in Auschwitz was freezing cold. We fortunately didn’t have to take pictures on that day but it didn’t matter – I remember that day very well. The German kapos put the Christmas tree in front of the kitchen and they put some lights on it. In the Christmas Eve, in the evening, there was roll-call then and we saw it all. The Germans put a couple of dead Jewish prisoners underneath the Christmas tree. Three kapos were standing by the Christmas tree and singing German carols. Kapo Markus played bandoneaon, the second kapo played the guitar and the third one wa singing ‘Heilige Nacht’. Even though there was a couple of thousands of prisoner in the roll-call square – this signing wasn’t so happy or loud as the atmosphere in the camp and looking at the dead bodies and prisoners who were dying made us all silent and reflective.
Karol Świętorzecki was deported to Auschwitz on 22nd September 1940. He was released from the camp in 1941.
In the picture you can see a painting by Janina Tolik, former Auschwitz prisoner. The pic is the courtesy of the Ghetto Fighters' House.