The following are excerpts from the journal of Elizabeth.
October 12, 1940
Yom Kippur is usually a wonderful day, but today all I feel is sorrow. The news I thought I would never hear has been heard loud and clear by my ears. In the past there was never a problem with Jews living in Warsaw, but now it seems like we mean nothing . We are to be relocated! To where I am not quite sure, but have heard talk of a place called the Warsaw Ghetto. We have been told to pack by the Germans. They broke into our apartment and kept yelling to move.
December 5, 1942
The conditions here are horrid. It is so crowded with about 450,000 people. It is not unusual to see people starved to death or people lining the streets dead of disease. The food distrubution is low and I have become dramatically thinner. We get 180 grams of bread a day and 220 grams of sugar a month. I am convinced the Germans are making a great attempt to kill us off. In the past we had much smuggled food come to us, but the Nazis put up walls with barbed wire and glass on the top to try to stop the smuggling. There are not many of us left in the Ghetto now after deportations and many are upset. There is talk and planning of an uprising and I plan to be involved if it is true. There is not much more to say. Life is dull now, yet an adventure. I miss my art back home and wonder if I will ever see it again.
January 18, 1943
The uprising is planned to happen today. I will be there. Mom and Dad warned me and said I will get killed, but I do not care. I hate the Germans and will do anything to destroy them even if it means my life. I would die happy knowing I died for a good cause.
We have forced the Germans to stop the deportation. In a small way we have succeeded with the resistance movement. It may seem very small but to me it feels like I made the greatest difference. There are plans for more attacks, but I fear I will not be around. There is talk that the stop of deportations will not last long and they are trying to rid the ghettos of the Jews. We will defeat the Germans.
March 16, 1943
There is to be another uprising starting April 19 after the final deportation and I plan to fight. We have gathered up our forces to about 700-750 people. I hope all goes well. Mom and Dad still tell me not to fight but I will die eventually and why not die for what I believe in.
April 19, 1943
I am growing uneasy about the uprising. After the last deportation we are all ordered to hide behind the bunkers. We are low on weapons, but we will do our best. I must leave to take my place.
May 16, 1943
The fighting has finally ended. The Germans were unable to get to us for after we fought we retreated by rooftop. To stop this the Nazis burned the ghetto. The fight would go on till the last person fell. We also saved many lives by escaping through the sewers. We have lost in general; however, we have won in our hearts for we have killed Nazis. There is a knock at our door. The Nazis have come.
Click on the bread to learn about the Rosens' food in the Warsaw Ghetto.
Model of Ghetto on display at Holocaust Center of Greater Pittsburgh. Image taken by team.
Two photographs courtesy Daniel Kren, sent via email.
Bread image used http://www.arttoday.com