RightsVancouver Holocaust Centre Society for Education and Remembrance | Vancouver Holocaust Education Centre | Video Testimony | Consent & Release to Video Record and Retain Records | Project: The Internment of Jewish Refugees in Canada, 1940–1943 on file
SynopsisErwin S. was born March 9, 1920 in Mülheim, Germany. He describes his observant Jewish family and early education. He attended the Israelite Teachers’ Seminary in Wurzburg. Erwin describes witnessing the destruction of the seminary and his arrest on Kristallnacht. He describes spending six weeks imprisoned at Dachau. He discusses the conditions of his release. He remembers receiving a student visa to travel to London, England and study at a yeshiva in March of 1939. He describes his arrest as an enemy alien in May 1940. He describes the conditions and movements from various temporary internment camps in England and the Isle of Man. Erwin reflects on the voyage to Canada on the Sobieksi. He describes life in internment camps in Camp T, Camp I and Camp B. He discusses how different groups of internees formed and how education was organized. Upon his release in 1942, Erwin completed further religious study and was ordained a rabbi in 1947. He describes learning that his parents had perished in the Holocaust. He discusses his life in Canada and career as a rabbi at Adath Israel in Toronto.