9. Moving the factories and the workers in 1944
In June 1944, the Allies launched the invasion of France and the Soviet Army launched an offensive which was soon grinding up the German defenses in the east. As the Soviets approached the Germans recognized that the activities of the eastern concentration camps would soon be known to the world. The Germans began arrangements to close many of the factory camps and move the remaining Jewish workers to extermination camps such as Auschwitz. Schindler learned of the plans through Mietek Pemper, the personal secretary of Amon Goth, who informed Schindler that the Nazis no longer considered his enamelware plant as crucial to the war effort. The suggestion was made, likely by Pemper, to shift the DEF to the production of anti-tank grenades used by the German Panzerfaust weapon in an effort to keep his factory open and the workers protected.
Once again Schindler resorted to coercion, flattery, and the most potent weapon in his personal arsenal – bribery – to convince Nazi officials to relocate his factory further behind the German lines to Brunnlitz, in his home region of the Sudetenland. It was Pemper, using the information provided by Marcel Goldberg, who produced the list of 1,200 Jews who would be transported to the new factory location. Both Goldberg and Pemper enriched themselves wherever possible during the preparation of the list, and both had been active in the black market throughout the German occupation of Poland. The list prepared by the two became the first of what were later revealed to be several lists of names which became famous as Schindler’s List. The movement of the Jewish workers, 1,000 workers from the DEF and 200 additional from a nearby textiles mill, began in October of 1944.