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Wing shaped Portuguese Air Force pin given to a young Jewish refugee by friends in Lisbon

Object | Accession Number: 2005.379.9

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    Wing shaped Portuguese Air Force pin given to a young Jewish refugee by friends in Lisbon

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    Brief Narrative
    Airman's lapel pin given to 13 year old Joseph Schadur by friends in Portugal during his family's flight from Nazi dominated Europe. It was given to him by two brothers, Sebastio and Jose Alameida, who came to the family's aid when they were stranded in Alcobaca during Christmas 1940. The men were air force officers and Joseph believed it was a Portuguese Air Force pin, but it may be an advertisement for an inn frequented by airmen. Joseph's father, Michel, left Germany in 1935 because the Nazi government's anti-Jewish policies were making it dangerous to live there. His wife, Manja, their 2 children, Joseph and his 4 year old sister, Benita, and his mother joined him in Antwerp, Belgium, in January 1936. After the Germans occupied Belgium in May 1940, the family was forced to flee once more. Traveling by private car, they eventually made their way to Lisbon, Portugal. They sailed for New York on board the SS Exeter on February 21, 1941.
    received:  1941 January-1941 February
    emigration:  1941 February 21
    received: Lisbon (Portugal)
    Credit Line
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Joseph Shadur
    back, top edge, engraved : *CASA BUTTULIER* / ??BARROS / QUEIROZ 30 (?)
    back, center, engraved : 129350 / LISBOA
    Subject: Joseph Shadur
    Joseph Schadur was born on April 23, 1928, in Riga, Latvia, to Manja (Masha) Hasenson and Michel Schadur. His parents moved to Berlin, Germany, in 1927, shortly after their marriage on June 12, but his mother returned to Riga for Joseph’s birth to be with her family. He had one sister, Benita, born in Berlin in 1932. They were not a particularly religious family, and attended synagogue only on theJewish high holidays. His father worked in the wholesale fruit industry. He travelled widely and was fluent in several languages. Hitler came to power in 1933, and by 1935, Michel’s business began to decline due to antisemitic boycotts and restrictions. That year while in Belgium on business, Michel decided not to return to Germany. With much difficulty, Manja obtained temporary tourist visas and she and the children joined him in Belgium on January 1, 1936. Michel was able to re-establish his business. The children attended a Tachkemonia Orthodox Jewish kindergarten and boys’ school. Joseph later transferred to a private French school. They spent the summer months at a children’s home in Oostduinkerke, where they explored the dunes and the bulwarks that remained from World War I.
    In May 1940, Germany occupied Belgium, and the family had to flee once more. They left by private car and reached Bordeaux before the French surrender to Germany in late June. For seven months, they managed to get by in Bruges, a country village near Bordeaux. With the assistance of Joseph’s maternal aunt, Gitta, who had emigrated from Germany to the United States in 1939, they received immigration and transit visas. The family left for the Spanish border on December 14, 1940. After two month in Lisbon, Portugal, they sailed on the SS Exeter to New York on February 21, 1941. From there, they proceeded to St. Paul, Minnesota, where Gitta and other relatives had already settled. The family changed their last name to Shadur.
    Michel returned to Europe for a few years in the immediate postwar period to work for UNRRA, the United Nations Refugee Relief Association, chiefly at Backnang displaced persons camp. Joseph attended the University of Minnesota. In 1950, he moved to Israel where he married Yehudit, who would become an internationally recognized artist for her rediscovery of the art of Jewish paper cutting. Joseph passed away, age 77, in October 2005.

    Physical Details

    Military Insignia
    Object Type
    Lapel pins (aat)
    Physical Description
    Bronze colored wing-shaped pin with an attached U shaped metal section for insertion through a button hole. In the center of the wings is a circular emblem of green and red enamel with a bronze overlay; within the circle is a red enamel shield with a white enamel cross. The back of the circular attachment had a beaded border design and 2 lines of Portuguese text.
    overall: Height: 0.625 inches (1.588 cm) | Width: 1.250 inches (3.175 cm) | Depth: 0.250 inches (0.635 cm)
    overall : metal, enamel paint

    Rights & Restrictions

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

    Keywords & Subjects

    Administrative Notes

    The lapel pin was donated to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in 2005 by Joseph Shadur.
    Record last modified:
    2023-08-31 14:42:48
    This page:

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