Square clip-on Daimon battery operated flashlight acquired by a British officer

United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
Washington, United States

German battery operated flashlight given to or found by Lt. D.P. Grehan, Royal Irish Fusiliers, British Army, who served as a commanding officer in Karaolos detention camp in Cyprus from March 1947 to June 1948. This type of hanging flashlight was manufactured from the 1930s-40s by the German company Daimon, and was often used by the German military. The internees were Ma'apilim, illegal immigrants, most Jewish survivors of the Holocaust, captured while trying to reach Eretz Israel without permission from the British. Great Britain controlled Palestine under a United Nations mandate and enforced very restrictive immigration policies. The huge number of postwar displaced persons led the British to set up the camps in 1946 as a deterrent. Ships attempting to bring unauthorized refugees were stopped by the British Navy and the passengers were interned on Cyprus. On May 14, 1948, the State of Israel was established. Within six months, most of the refugees interned on Cyprus were welcomed into the Jewish homeland.


  • Title: Square clip-on Daimon battery operated flashlight acquired by a British officer
  • Location: Great Britain--Emigration and immigration--Government policy--History--20th century. Palestine--Emigration and immigration.
  • Provenance: The flashlight was acquired by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in 2003.
  • Subject Keywords: Holocaust survivors--Cyprus. Jewish refugees--Cyprus. Jews--Cyprus--History--20th century. Prisoners as artists--Cyprus. Refugee camps--Cyprus. Military camps--Cyprus. Soldiers--Great Britain--Biography.
  • Type: Furnishings and Furniture
  • Rights: Permanent Collection
  • External Link: See the full record at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
  • Medium: Well used, small, square, black painted silver colored metal flashlight with a raised central mount with a threaded rim. A thick, convex, clear glass lens with a flat base is set into a threaded, silver colored metal ring screwed to the mount. Beneath the lens is a small, clear glass, incandescent lightbulb, screwed into a reflective, silver colored metal bowl. At the top is a hinged, rectangular, wire hanging loop with a sliding switch. Along the back left side is continuous hinge. Centered on the right side is a perpendicular, hinged latch, which releases to lift the front and open the flashlight. On the interior, attached to the front side behind the lightbulb, is a battery mount: a thin, horizontal metal plate with angled ends.

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