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Handknit green sweater worn by a young girl while living in hiding in the Lvov sewers

Object | Accession Number: 2004.484.1

Handknit, green, short sleeve sweater worn by 7 year old Krystina Chiger when she lived in hiding in the sewers of Lvov, Poland (Lviv, Ukraine), from June 1943 to July 1944. Krystyna had watched her paternal grandmother knit the sweater in the home they shared before the German invasion of Poland in 1939. After the German occupation of Lvov in June 1941, Krystyna watched from hiding as this grandmother and Krystyna’s young cousin, Inga, were loaded into a truck for deportation. Her grandmother waved in her direction and the guard hit her in the head with his rifle. The transport was presumably for Belzec extermination camp. The Germans moved all the Jews into a ghetto. When Krystyna’s father learned that the Germans planned to liquidate the ghetto in June 1943, he paid a sewer worker, Leopold Socha, who with two other workers, Stefan Wroblewski and Jerzy Kowalow, agreed to help them hide in the underground sewer pipes. Krystyna, her parents, Ignacy and Paulina, and her brother, Pawel, age 3, hid in the sewers with 17 others. When ten of the group decided to leave because of the horrible living conditions, they were shot soon after they emerged. Ignacy ran out of money to pay Socha, but he and the others continued to bring food and care for the family. On July 23, 1944, the city was liberated by the Soviet Army. On July 27, Krystyna and her family heard loud knocking on the sewer grate above. It was Socha and the others, telling them that they were free. In March 1945, the family moved to Krakow.

use:  1943 June-1944 July
use: Lvov (Poland) (historic); Lviv (Ukraine)
Clothing and Dress
Object Type
Sweaters (lcsh)
Credit Line
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Kristine Keren
Record last modified: 2021-02-10 09:48:42
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