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Watercolor of a mountain and town given to US military aid worker by liberated inmate

Object | Accession Number: 1988.112.63

Watercolor of a mountainside village painted by an unknown prisoner and presented to Lt. Milton Shurr, a Jewish American soldier, as a sign of friendship and gratitude by another inmate of the recently liberated Buchenwald concentration camp in April-May 1945. The painting was created shortly after liberation. First Lt. Shurr assisted in planning for D-Day, June 6, 1944, and joined the Civil Affairs Unit. He landed on Omaha Beach soon after the invasion to organize supplies, then was placed with the 1st Army Displaced Persons Team. On April 11, 1945, the US Third Army liberated Buchenwald. Command of the camp was transferred to the 1st Army, which was responsible for establishing order, improving camp conditions, and caring for the inmates. Shurr worked 16 hour days trying to find food for 15,000 starving survivors. He later was sent to Bavaria as a health welfare officer to assist with the re-establishment of schools, hospitals, and other social services by the US Military occupation government. In 1949, he declined a permanent position and returned to the US.

creation:  1945
received:  1945 April-1945 May
creation: Buchenwald (Concentration camp); Weimar (Thuringia, Germany)
received: Buchenwald (Concentration camp); Weimar (Thuringia, Germany)
Credit Line
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Milton L. Shurr
Record last modified: 2022-07-28 18:29:32
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