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White cloth drawstring hand coverings worn by a Jewish infant who lived in hiding with a Gentile family in Belgium

United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

Baby mitts with a drawstring worn by Betti Blaugrund when she was an infant living in hiding with the Louise and Udile Ceulemans-Gryson family in Aarschot, Belgium. Betti was three months old when the Gryson's gave her a safe home in October 1942. She was covered with sores and tried so often to scratch herself that her mother had restrained her. The Grysons made these coverings so she could use her hands and not hurt herself. Betti's parents, Cypra and Wolf, had fled to France when Belgium was occupied by Nazi Germany in May 1940, but returned because of antisemitism. In the summer of 1942, the Germans put into action their plan to get rid of all the Jews in Belgium. Betti was born on July 16. Around this time, the family was told to report for forced labor. They suspected they would be deported and went into hiding. It was too unsafe to hide with a baby, so Cypra found a non-Jewish woman who agreed to look after Betti for money. Cypra and Wolf hid in an apartment with several other family members. One day, while Cypra was out visiting Betti, the home was raided by Germans looking for Jews. Nine people in the house were arrested; only Wolf escaped and warned Cypra not to come home. They found a new place to hide and found a Gentile family in the country to provide better care for Betti. The Grysons loved the baby like their own and took her to see her mother every month as promised. Belgium was liberated by Allied Forces in September 1944 and Betti rejoined her parents. Both Cypra and Wolf were from very large families; nearly all of their relatives perished.

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Details

  • Title: White cloth drawstring hand coverings worn by a Jewish infant who lived in hiding with a Gentile family in Belgium
  • Provenance: The baby mitts were donated to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in 2011 by Betti Blaugrund.
  • Subject Keywords: Hidden children (Holocaust)--Belgium--Biography. Holocaust, Jewish (1939-1945)--Belgium--Brussels--Personal narratives. Jewish children in the Holocaust--Belgium--Brussels--Biography. Jews--Rescue--Belgium--Biography. Righteous Gentiles in the Holocaust--Belgium--Biography.
  • Type: Dress Accessories
  • Rights: Permanent Collection
  • External Link: See the full record at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
  • Medium: a. Thin white cloth handstitched baby mitten, slightly discolored, with a rectangular top, rounded bottom, and a drawstring closure. b. Thin white cloth handstitched baby mitten, slightly discolored, with a rectangular top, rounded bottom, and a drawstring closure.

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