Widely regarded as one of their matriarchs by Holocaust survivors, Dr. Hadassah Rosensaft (1912-1997) was imprisoned in Auschwitz-Birkenau and Bergen-Belsen. She kept 149 Jewish children alive in Bergen-Belsen from December 1944 until their liberation on April 15, 1945, and then served as administrator of that camp’s hospital. She was one of the leaders of the Jewish Displaced Persons in the British Zone of Germany, was one of the principal witnesses for the prosecution at the first trial of Nazi war criminals in 1945, and played a pivotal role in the creation of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.
“Reading Yesterday in the context of the challenges now facing the Jewish people is an uplifting experience. In the opening chapters Rosensaft, clearly a charismatic, cultured and articulate woman, describes the warm Jewish roots she inherited from her hassidic parents… She graphically describes her arrival in Auschwitz… She depicts in riveting detail the survival, horrors, heroism and resistance… Here are true role models which our generation… would do well to emulate.” [Isi Leibler, The Jerusalem Post]