Auction 102

Lot 157:

LITZMANNSTADT GHETTO OFFICE SIGN

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Start price: $300

Estimated price:

Auction house commission: 25%

An metal sign from Litzmannstadt (Lodz) Ghetto: ‘Der Aelteste der Juden in Litzmannstadt (Ghetto) Karten-Abteilung’, this translates to ‘Eldest of the Jews [head of the Jewish administrative body] in Litzmann (Ghetto) Registration Department.’ Overall dimension 8.25 x 5.5 in., enameled steel, some loss of enamel, discoloration, rust at the edges and the back, a rare historic relic of the Holocaust. The Registration Department at 4 Miodowa Street – later 4/6 Plac Koscielny functioned from 10 May 1940. After January 1941 the office was connected with the Registry and the Statistics Department, managed by HENRYK NAFTALIN. The office’s task was registering the inhabitants, keeping up-to-date records, and a current index of accommodation and addresses. Later, in 1941 the office began keeping record books of births, marriages and deaths, and statistics of population movements within the ghetto. An additional function of that department was to provide addresses of ghetto inhabitants to the ghetto administration and to the German authorities. Henryk Naftalin was in charge of the Lodz Ghetto Archive and subsequently, the Chronicle of the Lodz Ghetto. Parts of the archive survived and were found after the war in 1946 and have been archived and scanned and are accessible online.

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