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Knife taken from a German soldier and acquired by a German Jewish family in hiding

Object | Accession Number: 1990.307.10

Metal knife taken from a German soldier and acquired by a member of Max Heppner’s family in 1944. Max was living with his German parents, Albert and Irene, in Amsterdam, when Germany occupied the Netherlands in May 1940. The new civil administration run by the SS gradually tightened control on the residents, and required Jews to register their business assets. Albert’s work permit was rescinded in 1940, but he continued dealing illegally on a small scale. In 1942, the authorities raided their home for valuables on multiple occasions, and began rounding up Jews for deportation in the summer. Albert and his friend, Heinz Graumann, were connected to an underground group who promised to smuggle their families out of the country. They left Amsterdam on August 9, and the smugglers moved them through a series of hiding places. On September 10, the Heppners were placed on a farm owned by Johann (Harry) and Hubertina (Dina) Janssen in Zeilberg-Deurne, where they resided in an empty chicken house. After the Netherlands was liberated in early May, Albert set out to check on his friends and business in Amsterdam. On June 5, Albert suddenly became very ill and died of liver failure. Irene and Max returned to Amsterdam, and lived with friends until their immigration to the United States in November 1946.

received:  approximately 1944
acquired: in hiding; Netherlands
Object Type
Daggers (lcsh)
Credit Line
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Max Amichai Heppner
Record last modified: 2022-10-31 14:26:00
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