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American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (AJDC) blue enameled pin worn by a former concentration camp inmate and refugee aid worker

United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (AJDC) blue enamel pin worn by aid worker Hans Finke when he worked for relief organization after the end of World War II. He was at Bergen-Belsen when it was liberated by the British Army on April 15, 1945. An electrician by trade, he began working for the British and then various aid groups after it became a displaced persons camp. Hans, his parents and his sister Ursula lived in Berlin during the rise of the Nazi dictatorship in 1933 with its aggressive anti-Jewish policies. In February 1943, Hans, 23, was a forced laborer for Siemens when he was hospitalized with appendicitis. On February 29, his parents were rounded up and deported to Auschwitz. On March 8, the Gestapo raided the hospital and arrested staff and patients. Hans was transported to Buna-Monowitz concentration camp, and later sent to Auschwitz, Sachsenhausen, Flossenberg, and Bergen-Belsen concentration camps. Hans was in Bergen-Belsen when it was liberated.in April 1945. His parents were murdered in Auschwitz, but his sister Ursula survived in hiding. Bergen-Belsen became a displaced persons camp and Hans began working for the British and then various aid groups. He met Alice Redlich, who had left Berlin for England in 1938 to continue her nurses's training. She volunteered with the Jewish Committee for Relief Abroad and, in September 1946, left for the Bergen-Belsen DP camp in Germany. Her family was murdered in Auschwitz concentration camp in 1943. Alice and Hans married on June 20, 1948, in the DP camp. The couple, with Alice pregnant with their first child, emigrated to the United States on August 29, 1949.

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Details

  • Title: American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (AJDC) blue enameled pin worn by a former concentration camp inmate and refugee aid worker
  • Provenance: The AJDC pin was donated to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in 2005 by Alice Fink, the wife of John Fink.
  • Subject Keywords: Concentration camp inmates--Biography. Holocaust, Jewish (1939-1945)--Germany--Personal narratives. Holocaust survivors--United States--Biography. Jewish refugees--United States--Biography. Jews--Persecution--Germany--Berlin--Biography. World War, 1939-1945--Civilian relief--Germany--Belsen--Personal narratives. World War, 1939-1945--Concentration camps--Liberation--Germany--Belsen--Personal narratives.
  • Type: Identifying Artifacts
  • Rights: Permanent Collection
  • External Link: See the full record at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
  • Medium: Arched, gold colored metal bar pin with a blue enameled background and 4 white enamel painted letters with raised, unpainted borders. There is a straight metal clasp pin on the back.

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