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Yellow warning skull and crossbones pennant found by a concentration camp inmate after liberation

Object | Accession Number: 2014.461.4

German military issue, poison gas warning pennant found by Symcho Dymant after he was liberated from Buchenwald concentration camp on April 11, 1945. The pennants were attached to a thin, iron rod and staked into the ground. They were used to mark off areas contaminated with dangerous gas, and later repurposed to warn against hidden landmines. The pennants were part of a set that included 20 flags each attached to a 60-cm-long iron rod, painted with red anti-rust paint, a roll of yellow tape, and a carrying pouch. When Germany invaded Poland on September 1, 1939, Symcho was living in Czestochowa with his wife Tonia and 3-year-old son, Aaron. The family was forced to move into the ghetto, after it was established in April 1941. Symcho escaped and, because he spoke German, was able to get a civilian job in a German military installation by assuming the identity of a non-Jewish Polish person. In September 1942, Tonia, Aaron, and the rest of Symcho’s family were sent to Treblinka and killed. The SS discovered that Symcho was Jewish and he was deported to Buchenwald in Germany, arriving on December 24, 1944. He was assigned prisoner number 15349, and was a slave laborer in a nearby military factory. On April 11, 1945, Symcho was liberated by American forces. He lived in Fulda displaced persons camps before joining Kibbutz Buchenwald. The rabbi of the kibbutz arranged for the kibbutz members to immigrate to Palestine in September 1945.

found:  after 1945 April 11-before 1945 September
use:  1941 July-1945
found: Germany
use: Germany
Information Forms
Object Type
Hazard signs (lcsh)
Signs (Notices)
Credit Line
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Dr. Jacob Dimant
Record last modified: 2021-02-10 09:25:26
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