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Tefillin pair kept through the war by a Jewish Polish man

Object | Accession Number: 2003.418.2 a-b

Tefillin set taken by Michael [Mojsej] Garber, 21, when he fled Warsaw, Poland, for Soviet territory soon after the September 1939 German invasion. Tefillin are small boxes containing prayers attached to leather straps and worn on the arm and the head by Jewish males during morning prayers. Michael received these tefillin from his parents when he was a 12 year old boy preparing for bar mitzvah. He kept them in a small pouch and took them with him, along with his prayer book, when he escaped. The Soviet authorities sent him to a labor camp but when Germany invaded the Soviet Union in June 1941, he convinced them to let him work as a physician's assistant. In February 1945, when Poles were allowed to leave Soviet territory, he was a physician for 5 collective farms in Uzbekistan. Michael agreed to marry another Polish refugee and physician, Ella Dworecka, so that her family could return to Poland. Her father promised they could divorce after the journey, but Michael and Ella chose to remain together. Michael's parents, Aron and Frajda, and his sister Bronja and her husband Sam Duvorestki perished during the war.

received:  approximately 1930
received: Warsaw (Poland)
Jewish Art and Symbolism
Object Type
Tefillin (lcsh)
Credit Line
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Michael Garber
Record last modified: 2022-09-09 10:01:17
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