Alec Ward memoir

Language of Description
Alt. Identifiers
  • 1998.A.0204
Level of Description
  • English
EHRI Partner

Extent and Medium




Biographical History

Alec Ward was born Abram Warszaw on January 3, 1927 in Parysów, Poland to Szmul Mosze Warszaw and Chaja Ester Warszaw (née Dudkiewicz). His mother died in childbirth. His father remarried Sara Bronstein. Alec Ward had one sister, Lea Warszaw, and three half-brothers, Laib Warszaw, Herszel Warszaw, and a baby (name unidentified). Alec Ward also lived in Łaskarzew, Poland and Magnuszew, Poland. Szmul Mosze Warszaw worked as a glazier. At the beginning of World War II, Ward lived with his family in Magnuszew, Poland. They were forced into the Magnuszew ghetto, where his father, with assistance of Christian friends, smuggled food into the ghetto. The family was sent to the Kozenice ghetto. Alec and his brother Laib (age nine) escaped the ghetto. They walked back to Magnuszew and lived in the forest and fields for three months. They were eventually captured by the Germans and taken back to the Kozenice ghetto, which had been liquidated and its inhabitants, including their family, murdered at Treblinka. During a selection in the town of Radom, Laib Warszaw was deemed unfit for labor and shot. The survivors of the selection were sent to the Skarzysko Kamienna labor camp in Radom, Poland, where Alec worked in an ammunition factory. He was eventually sent to another labor camp in Rakow, where he labored as a steel worker. Alec was then sent to Buchenwald concentration camp, then to the sub-camp of Floßberg, and then to Mauthausen concentration camp in Austria. Alec Ward was liberated from Mauthausen concentration camp on May 5, 1945 by the American forces. In October 1945, Alec was sent to England under the auspices of the Central British Fund, Committee for Children from Concentration Camps. Alec and other refugee children lived in a Hostel that was funded by photographer Boris Bennett and his wife Julia Bennett. In 1952, Alec met and married Hettie Cohen and they had two children, Mark and Lyla.


Funding Note: The cataloging of this collection has been supported by a grant from the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany.

Alec Ward donated the Alec Ward memoir to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in January 1998.

Scope and Content

The Alec Ward memoir is a 13 page memoir entitled "My Story" by Alec Ward. In the memoir, Mr. Ward describes life in the Magnuszew ghetto, the ghetto Kozenice in the district of Radom, slave labor camps Skarzysko Kamienna and Rakow, as well as life in the Buchenwald concentration camp, the Buchenwald subcamp of Flößberg, and the Mauthausen concentration camp.

System of Arrangement

The Alec Ward memoir is arranged in a single series.




This description is derived directly from structured data provided to EHRI by a partner institution. This collection holding institution considers this description as an accurate reflection of the archival holdings to which it refers at the moment of data transfer.