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Video Archives: Vilk Hodinger

Vilk Hodinger

Vilk Hodinger

born in Vynohradiv , 1928

Videos

Vilk Hodinger grew up with five siblings, of whom three perished in Auschwitz. He attended cheder in Vynohradiv from the ages 6 to 15, as well as Czech and Hungarian schools. His father, who worked as laborer, was born in Ilnytsya and his mother came from Pryslip. During World War II, he survived the selection at Auschwitz, where he was deported from the Vynohradiv ghetto in May 1944. He was liberated from the Furstenfeldbruck forced labor camp, where he fixed airplanes for several months. Between 1949 and 1953, he served in the Soviet military. He worked odd jobs before his draft and then sold ice-cream for thirty years.


Current Video: A Few Pengos

In this clip, Vilk Hodinger describes prewar Jewish life in the Transcarpathian town Vynohradiv (Yiddish: Selish). He explains that his family was very poor and his father had to work odd jobs to make ends meet. He also recalls the living arrangements at home, where several members of his family shared a single bed.

Transcarpathia was under Czechoslovak rule when Vilk grew up. Due to the province's unique location as borderland, a multiethnic population, consisting of Jews, Hungarians, Romanians, Ruthenians, Poles and Germans, resided there. The population cultivated socio-economic ties with neighboring countries that persevered after the province was Sovietized in 1945, and the borders officially shut down. This is why, Vilk's father was able to make some extra money, specifically pengos - the Hungarian currency between 1927 and 1946, by helping travelers from Budapest with their bags at the railway station.