Advanced Search

Learn About The Holocaust

Special Collections

My Saved Research

Login

Register

Help

Skip to main content

Sign for Dachau concentration camp acquired by a US soldier

Object | Accession Number: 2007.234.1

Search this record's additional resources, such as finding aids, documents, or transcripts.

No results match this search term.
Check spelling and try again.

results are loading

0 results found for “keyward

    Sign for Dachau concentration camp acquired by a US soldier
    Loading

    Please select from the following options:

    Overview

    Brief Narrative
    Sign lettered Dachau taken by James Vasilopoulos, a US soldier, upon his arrival at Dachau concentration camp on April 29, 1945, the day of its liberation by American troops. He took the sign from the main gate and detached it by sliding it out of a slot. He and another infantryman were point men for their company and opened one of the gates at Dachau. It was not locked. He said once they were inside the "pandemonium and happiness of the prisoners was beyond description." Vasilopoulos, 25, was a member of K Company, 157th Infantry Regimnetm, 45th Infantry Division, 3rd Battalion, a Thunderbird Division. The Division landed in Sicily in July 1943 and fought their way through Italy, France and then into Germany. They were moving towards Munich when they received orders to liberate the nearby camp.
    Date
    found:  1945 April 29
    Geography
    found: Dachau (Concentration camp); Dachau (Germany)
    Credit Line
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of James Vasilopoulos
    Contributor
    Subject: James Vasilopoulos
    Biography
    James Vasilopoulos was born in October 1920 in Akron, Ohio, to Theodore and Stella Vasilopoulos. He enlisted in the United States Army in 1942. James was assigned to K Company, 3rd Battalion, 157th Infantry Regiment, 45th Infantry Division, the Thunderbird Division, during World War II. The Division landed in Sicily in July 1943 and fought their way through Italy, France, and then into Germany. They were moving towards Munich when they received orders to liberate the nearby Dachau concentration camp. On April 29, 1945, James and another infantryman were point men for their company and opened one of the gates at Dachau. It was not locked. He said once they were inside the "pandemonium and happiness of the prisoners was beyond description." Vasilopoulous was awarded the Good Conduct Medal, the Bronze Star, and the Combat Infantry Badge. He passed away, age 87, in Akron, on November 30, 2007.

    Physical Details

    Classification
    Information Forms
    Object Type
    Direction signs (aat)
    Physical Description
    Rectangular wooden sign with painted white text Dachau on the black painted front.
    Dimensions
    overall: Height: 1.500 inches (3.81 cm) | Width: 3.625 inches (9.208 cm)
    Materials
    overall : wood, paint
    Inscription
    front, white paint : DACHAU

    Rights & Restrictions

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

    Keywords & Subjects

    Administrative Notes

    Provenance
    The Dachau sign was donated to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in 2007 by James Vasilopoulos.
    Record last modified:
    2023-08-25 17:15:45
    This page:
    https:​/​/collections.ushmm.org​/search​/catalog​/irn519036

    Download & Licensing

    In-Person Research

    Contact Us