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Forbidden for Jews sign in Dutch displayed during the German occupation of the Netherlands

Object | Accession Number: 2000.292.1

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    Brief Narrative
    Forbidden for Jews sign in Dutch, displayed in Amsterdam during the German occupation of the Netherlands from May 1940 to May 1945. These signs were used to indicate the ban of Jews from public spaces such as, swimming pools, libraries, and markets. They became widespread throughout Amsterdam in 1941. Germany invaded the Netherlands on May 10, 1940, and the Dutch surrendered five days later. Prior to the occupation, there were approximately 140,000 Jews living in the Netherlands, with the majority residing in Amsterdam. The Netherlands had a reputation for being more tolerant towards minorities than other European countries, and the majority of Dutch Jews were well assimilated. During the occupation, German authorities gradually imposed anti-Jewish policies. Beginning in October 1940 Jews were removed from government employment and banned from recreational facilities, hotels, and restaurants. In January 1941, a census was ordered for all people with Jewish blood. Within the next month, the first deportations of Jewish men to concentration camps began. The deportations and restrictions against Jews continued to intensify throughout 1942 and 1943. The German government relied heavily on Dutch authorities, like Jan Feitsma, the Attorney General of Amsterdam, whose name is on the sign, to enforce their policies. By May 1943, the roughly 10,000 remaining Jews in Amsterdam were being rounded up for deportation to concentration camps. By the end of the war over 75% of Dutch Jews had been murdered, more than in any other Western European country.
    use:  <empty> 1941-approximately 1945
    Amsterdam (Netherlands);
    Credit Line
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of the NIOD Institute for War-, Holocaust and Genocide Studies (Nederlands Instituut voor Oorlogsdocumentatie)
    front, center, printed, black ink : Voor / Joden verboden [Forbidden for Jews]
    front, lower right, printed, black ink : DE PROCUREUR-GENERAAL / FUNGEEREND GEWSTELIJK / DIRECTEUR VAN POLITIE / FEITSMA [The Attorney General Acting Regional Director of Police Feitsma]
    front, lower center, printed, black ink : seal of the Procureur-Generaal of Amsterdam

    Physical Details

    Information Forms
    Signs (Notices)
    Physical Description
    Rectangular, wooden sign painted off-white with Dutch text printed in black ink on the front. The sign is made up of three, equal-sized, horizontal, slats connected together along the long sides with tongue and groove joints. There are two additional vertical slats secured to the back of the sign with metal nails on the left and right ends. The sign is scuffed and stained overall with losses to the wood and paint on the lower right region. The front of the sign has two nail holes that extend all the way through: one centered at the top and the other at the bottom. A piece of wood is chipped off from the lower right corner, and paint losses on the front obscure some of the text. On the back, there are losses around the lower nail hole and rust stains extend from the remaining nails.
    overall: Height: 11.125 inches (28.258 cm) | Width: 15.500 inches (39.37 cm) | Depth: 1.000 inches (2.54 cm)
    overall : wood, paint, metal, ink

    Rights & Restrictions

    Conditions on Access
    No restrictions on access
    Conditions on Use
    No restrictions on use

    Keywords & Subjects

    Geographic Name
    Amsterdam (Netherlands)

    Administrative Notes

    The sign was donated to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in 2000 by the NIOD Institute for War-, Holocaust and Genocide Studies (Nederlands Instituut voor Oorlogsdocumentatie).
    Record last modified:
    2023-06-14 07:08:02
    This page:

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