Thomas Blatt was born Tomasz Blatt to a Jewish family in Izbica, Poland. In 1943, when he was 16, he, his younger brother, and their parents were among the Jews rounded up and transported to the Nazi death camp of Sobibor. All of his family were killed there, along with most of the others from his village.
Blatt was among the 300 prisoners who took part in an uprising on October 14, 1943 and escaped from Sobibor. He was shot in the jaw while hiding in the nearby forest, but survived. When his wound had healed, he pretended to be a Christian Pole and joined a group of partisans with whom he fought the Germans until the end of the war. Afterwards, he studied journalism in Poland. In 1958, he emigrated to Israel, where he married an American, and later to the USA. In the late 1970s and 1980s, he worked with author and journalist Richard Rashke to locate and interview Sobibor survivors.
The resulting book, Escape from Sobibor (1983), was adapted into an award-winning 1987 television movie; Blatt served as a technical adviser on the film.
Blatt later wrote two books of his own about Sobibor, including his memoir, From the Ashes of Sobibor (1997).
His book The Forgotten Revolt (1997), a history based on his years of research, was the basis for the website by the same name.