Document Type

Oral History

Publication Date

September 2008

Creation Date


Publisher Information

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


Army, Atrocities, Chaplains, Concentration camps, Crimes against humanity, Dachau, Genocide, Germany, Heimberg, Eli, Infantry Division, 42nd, Jewish veterans, Liberation, American, United States, Veterans, World War, 1939-1945


This is an oral history interview with Holocaust concentration camp liberator Eli Heimberg. Heimberg was an assistant chaplain in the 42nd Infantry Division, which liberated Dachau on April 29, 1945. He and chaplain Rabbi Eli Bohnen heard about the camp several hours after it was first discovered and decided to go there. Upon arriving, they asked where the Jewish prisoners were and spent a couple of hours with a group of about twenty-five Polish Jews. Many of them had relatives in America, and Heimberg and Bohnen took their names and contact information. Rabbi Bohnen also recited the Prayer for the Dead before they left. In this interview, Heimberg, who is Jewish, describes his reactions to the camp and how it affected his sense of identity as a Jew.

Physical Information

1 sound file (37 min.) : digital, MP3 file + 1 transcript (13 p.)