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Allach porcelain figure given to a US Army doctor by recently liberated prisoners of Dachau

Object | Accession Number: 2007.194.2

Porcelain figure of a Garde du Corps (Bodyguard) produced by slave labor, and given to United States Army surgeon Joseph Witter by former prisoners of Dachau concentration camp. The Porzellan-Manufaktur Allach (PMA) was founded in 1935 in the Munich suburb of Allach. It produced decorative porcelain pieces with the goal of developing a new echelon of German artistic taste. The factory quickly became a pet-project of SS Reichsführer (Reich leader) Heinrich Himmler, who eventually took control took of 45 percent of the output and often gifted figures to various SS officials and friends. One of the popular series included historical leaders and soldiers from periods of German military success. The Gardes du Corps was established in 1740 as the personal bodyguards of the Prussian king, Frederick the Great, and fought as part of the Prussian army in the Seven Years’ War. In 1937, the primary PMA factory moved to the SS Training and Education Camp, adjacent to Dachau. Beginning in 1940, Jewish prisoners from the camp were forced to work in the factory, which continued to run until late April 1945. On April 29, U.S. forces liberated over 32,000 people at Dachau. Once the camp was secured, Joseph and other medical personnel tried to aid as many sick and dying prisoners as they could. Before his unit moved out of the camp, a group of Jewish prisoners presented him with porcelain figures made in the factory, as a token of gratitude for his assistance.

Artwork Title
Offizier d.Schlosswache
Alternate Title
Seydlitz Kurassier
Officer of the Castle Guard
Garde du Corps
Date
manufacture:  approximately 1943-1945
received:  1945 April 29-1945 April 30
Geography
manufacture: Dachau (Concentration camp); Dachau (Germany)
received: Dachau (Concentration camp); Dachau (Germany)
Classification
Decorative Arts
Category
Ceramics
Genre/Form
Figurines.
Credit Line
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Sean P. Tully
 
Record last modified: 2020-06-30 09:25:37
This page: https://collections.ushmm.org/search/catalog/irn519071