The United States Holocaust Memorial Commission and United States Holocaust Memorial Council
Hadassah Bimko (later Rosensaft) was born on August 26, 1912, in Sosnowiec, Poland. In 1935, Hadassah received her doctorate in dental surgery and began a career as a dentist. In September 1939, she was living with her family in Sosnowiec, Poland, when Nazi Germany invaded and occupied the country. In 1943, Hadassah, her 5.5 year old son, and her parents were sent to Auschwitz concentration camp. Her son and parents were soon killed on the gas chambers. Hadassah was made to work as a doctor in the infirmary. Aware that sick inmates often were sent to the gas chambers to be killed, Dr. Rosensaft sent them out of the infirmary and told camp officials that they were healthy. She remained a prisoner in Auschwitz until November 14, 1944, when she was sent to Bergen-Belsen concentration camp in Germany. She again was told to work as a doctor. In December 1944, 101 Jewish orphans arrived at the camp and were placed in her care. Bergen Belsen was liberated on April 15,1945, by British forces. Hadassah is credited with helping save hundreds of Jewish inmates at Auschwitz. She testified at the 1945 war crimes trial of former commandants and staff members from Auschwitz and Bergen-Belsen. She identified 15 of the 45 mass murder defendants, including Josef Kramer, a former commandant known as "the Beast of Belsen." Her family soon died in the gas chambers, and she went to work in the infirmary. The war ended when Germany surrendered on May 7. Soon after this, Hadassah married Joseph Rosensaft, who was chairman of the Jewish Committee of Bergen-Belsen, which oversaw the needs of camp survivors. Dr. Rosensaft, 85, died on October 3, 1997.