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Japanese propaganda matchbox with a bomb exploding in the center of the US acquired postwar by a German Jewish refugee

Object | Accession Number: 2010.240.12

Japanese matchbox acquired postwar by Ralph (Ralf) Harpuder. This box features an image of a bomb crashing through the center of the flag draped United States. Four year old Ralf, his parents, Hans and Gerda, and his 14 year old sister, Ursula, left Berlin, Germany, following Kristallnacht on November 9-10, 1938. They left for Shanghai because it was an open port with no visa required and arrived in March 1939. Shanghai was controlled by the Japanese military and as the war intensified, they were relocated to the Hongkew ghetto. Food and supplies became extremely difficult to obtain, but Ralf was able to stay in school because they waived his tuition. The city was liberated by the US Army on September 3, 1945. That October, Ralf's father died of malnutrition. In March 1947, the family emigrated to the United States.

emigration:  1939 March
publication/distribution:  approximately 1942
manufacture: Japan
Credit Line
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Yvonne Harpuder
Record last modified: 2023-02-13 09:19:20
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