Document Type

Oral History

Publication Date

March 2008

Creation Date

2008-03-19

Publisher Information

Florida Holocaust Museum in conjunction with University of South Florida Tampa Library and Holocaust & Genocide Studies Center

Keywords

Battle of the Ardennes, Battle of the Bulge, 1944-1945, Army, Atrocities, Berga, Brooks, Morton D., Concentration camps, Crimes against humanity, Death marches, Genocide, Germany, Infantry Division, 42nd, Jewish veterans, Liberation, American, Prisoners and prisons, Stalag IX B., United States, Veterans, World War, 1939-1945

Abstract

This is an oral history interview with World War II prisoner of war Morton D. Brooks. Brooks was a rifleman in the 42nd Infantry Division. During the Battle of the Bulge, he volunteered to repair a telephone line, following it into a bunker near the town of Hatten. He and several other men trapped there, realizing they had no other choice, surrendered to the Germans and were taken prisoner. Brooks was brought to Stalag IX B, where he and 80 other Jewish soldiers were separated; he was one of the 350 American POWs sent to Berga. He was assigned to work in the tunnels, hollowing out a mountain. In April the prisoners were taken out of the camp on a death march. While on the road, Brooks and a friend attempted to escape but were caught by a farmer and brought back to the group. A few days later, they were liberated by members of the 11th Armored Division. Brooks spent six weeks in England recuperating before going home. He discusses the effects of his experience and his readjustment to civilian life. Brooks regularly speaks at schools and has often been interviewed.

Physical Information

1 sound file (159 min.) : digital, MP3 file + 1 transcript (49 p.)