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Iron Cross, 2nd class, 2 ribbons, and box awarded to a German Jewish soldier for bravery in WWI

Object | Accession Number: 2003.361.9 a-d

Iron Cross 2nd Class medal awarded to Moritz Henschel for his bravery on August 14, 1915, on the Italian front in World War I (1914-1918.) Moritz was an influential lawyer in Berlin when Hitler came to power in Germany in January 1933. As government persecution of Jews intensified, Moritz and Hildegard sent their daughters Marianne, 15, to Palestine and Lilly, 13, to England in 1939. Moritz was on the board of the Reich Association of Jews in Germany, created by the Nazi government in February 1939 to organize Jewish affairs. The Association was eventually forced to assist with deportations. In 1940, Moritz became president of the Berlin Jewish Community. In January 1943, Moritz became president of the Reich Association, when Leo Baeck was deported. On June 10, 1943, the Reich Association was shut down and Moritz and Hildegard were deported to Theresienstadt. Moritz was elected to the Jewish Council and put in charge of the Freizeitgestaltung, which produced cultural events and materials. On May 9, 1945, the camp was liberated by Soviet forces. Moritz and Hildegard went to Deggendorf displaced persons camp, then emigrated to Palestine in 1946.

commemoration:  1915 August 14
commemoration:  1914-1918
manufacture: Pforzheim (Germany)
received: Berlin (Germany)
Military Insignia
Object Type
Medals, German (lcsh)
Credit Line
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Yoel Givol and Michal Lilli Kahani, in memory of their grandparents, Hildegard and Moritz Henschel
Record last modified: 2020-06-30 09:20:10
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