Mezuzah and tombstone pendants on a necklace made by a former concentration camp inmate in a DP camp

United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
Washington, United States

Mezuzah and tombstone metal pendants on a chain necklace made and worn by Izy Freudenreich after the war in Landsberg displaced persons camp, Lager 7, in Germany, May-June 1945. Izy made the headstone in memory of his father Leib who died in Kaufering VII slave labor camp on February 2, 1945. It is engraved with his name and that date. In February 1940, several months after Germany occupied Poland, Izy, 20, and his parents, Leib and Tauba, were forced into Lodz ghetto. Izy developed a relationship with Irma Herzfeld, 23. Following mass deportations in summer 1944, Izy’s parents arranged a hiding place for them, but could not secure a place for Irma’s sister Ruth. Irma refused to go without her, so they all stayed and, in August, were sent to Auschwitz. On September 1, Izy and Leib were transferred to Dachau in Germany. Izy was assigned prisoner number 96118, and Izy 96117. They then were sent to Kaufering VII in Landsberg, where Leib died. Irma, Ruth, and Tauba were sent from Auschwitz to Hambuhren slave labor camp, and then to Bergen Belsen, where they were liberated on April 15, 1945. Tauba died of typhus four days later. Izy was liberated by US forces on May 2. He found Irma, with Ruth, in Bergen-Belsen in June 1945 and they married in July. Izy and Irma went to a displaced persons camp in Munich, and then Hamburg. Izy, Irma, and their 2 year old daughter emigrated to America in 1950.


  • Title: Mezuzah and tombstone pendants on a necklace made by a former concentration camp inmate in a DP camp
  • Location: Landsberg am Lech (Germany : Refugee camp)
  • Provenance: The necklace with mezuzah and pendant was donated to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in 2003 by Irma Freudenreich, wife of Izy Freudenreich.
  • Subject Keywords: Jewish refugees--Germany--Biography. Holocaust survivors--United States--Biography. Holocaust, Jewish (1939-1945)--Poland--Personal narratives. Women concentration camp inmates--Poland--Biography. Concentration camp inmates--Germany--Poland--Biography. Slave labor--Germany--Biography.
  • Type: Jewelry
  • Rights: Permanent Collection
  • External Link: See the full record at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
  • Medium: The a, b, and c component designations have been added for cataloging purposes only. a. Small mezuzah pendant with a hollow, tubular, silver colored metal case, with sealed end caps. A small, circular hole on one side exposes a parchment scroll with handwritten Hebrew text. The mezuzah is attached to a chain, (c), through a slot in the top cap. b. Flat, silver colored metal, rectangular pendant with an arched top that widens at the bottom. It represents a headstone and is engraved with Hebrew text and 2 dates on the front and German text on the back. There is a hole at the top wih a brass colored bale that is attached to a chain (c). c. Brass colored metal cable link chain with a ring clasp at one end; the catch is missing or has broken off the other end. Two metal pendants (a and b) are attached.

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