Eliezer and his father (Shlomo), are talking to each other. Eliezer is confused about his faith and is talking to his father about it. They live in a small town known as Sighet. It is a predominately Jewish town and they partake in many Jewish practices.
German Soldiers came to their town and acted very friendly and hospitable at first. Shortly after, they created Ghettos and forced all of the Jewish people of Sighet into them. Moishe the Beadle had warned of this, however, no one had listened.
The Germans forced everyone from the ghettos onto cattle cars. They were deported to a concentration camp known as Birkenau. On the train, we are introduced to Mrs. Schachter who foreshadows what is to come. At the camp, Elie and his father were separated from the rest of their family.
Eliezer and his father had been separated from the rest of their family. Shortly after this, they were sent to Auschwitz. After about 3 weeks, they were sent to Buna to work in a higher skilled place, like an electrical factory.
The Nazi's hear word of Russians that were coming in to attempt to free those being held in the concentration camp, so everyone was evacuated. They ran for 20 kilometers and risked being shot if they slowed down or stopped. When they finally got onto the train to go to the next camp, no one had any food or water. Of the 100 people on Elie's car, 12 survived.
The train arrived at Buchenwald and everyone was able to take a shower. Elie's father dies of an illness and Elie is filled with mixed emotions. At this point, Elie had lost almost all of his faith in God.