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WWI German military black and white striped ribbon that belonged to a Jewish veteran and concentration camp inmate

Object | Accession Number: 2005.492.3

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    WWI German military black and white striped ribbon that belonged to a Jewish veteran and concentration camp inmate
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    Overview

    Brief Narrative
    Ribbon which belonged to Salli Joseph, probably awarded for his service in the German Army during World War I, 1914-1918. Salli and his family lived in Berlin, Germany, and he began searching for ways to get his family out of the country after the establishment of the Nazi dictatorship in 1933. They tried to get visas for the United States, since his wife's sister had lived there for some time. However, Salli and his wife, Martha, were placed on the very restrictive Polish quota system by the US because they were born in West Prussia. In 1939, they sent their 19 year old son, Bernard, to England and in 1940, their 16 year old daughter, Margot, to Palestine. Salli and Martha were deported to Auschwitz concentration camp on March 6, 1943, where they were killed shortly after arrival.
    Date
    commemoration:  1914-1918
    Geography
    issue: Germany
    Credit Line
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Margot Hamburger
    Contributor
    Subject: Margot Hamburger
    Subject: Salli Joseph
    Biography
    Margot Joseph was born on March 24, 1924, in Berlin, Germany to Salli and Martha Danziger Joseph. She had one older brother, Bernard, born on November 1, 1920. Salli was a decorated World War I German soldier, who married Martha shortly after that war and settled in Berlin where Martha’s family lived. Salli and Martha ran a piecework tailoring business in their home. The family was liberal in their Jewish beliefs. Margot attended the public schools until 1934, when her father removed her due to the teaching of Nazi policies following the establishment of the Nazi dictatorship in 1933. She was sent to the Jewish school, where she learned Hebrew, as well as Jewish history. During these years, Margot became a Zionist, and she began to dream of going to Palestine. Salli and Martha were against it at first, but after the Kristallnacht pogrom in November 1938, they allowed Margot to join Youth Aliyah. Youth Aliyah was formed in 1933 to rescue Jewish children from Nazi Germany, and prepare them for life in farming communes in Palestine. Margot joined in 1939 and was sent to a hakhshara (training camp) in the German countryside to learn the skills that would be needed on a kibbutz in Palestine.

    Her brother, Bernard, got a work permit for England and left Germany in 1939. Margot received permission from the British government to go to Palestine in March 1940. On March 25, she said goodbye to her parents and took a train to Trieste, Italy, where she boarded a boat, the Marco Polo, to Haifa, reaching port on April 4, 1940. She was assigned to a kibbutz called Ramat David, where she stayed for about 2 ½ years. While she was in the kibbutz Margot was given the Jewish name of Yehudit, which she went by while living at the kibbutz.

    She was able to keep in contact with her parents through relatives in the United States and with the help of the International Red Cross. In October 1943, she learned from an aunt in the United States that her parents had been deported to Auschwitz concentration camp. Though their fate was not known, Margot felt sure that they had been killed. After the war ended, she would learn that they had been killed in March 1943, soon after their arrival at the camp.
    In 1950, Margot married Egon Hamburger. They had two children. Her brother, Bernard, had emigrated from Great Britain to the United States after the war. He urged Margot to move there with her family and they did so in 1954. Egon died of a heart attack in 1968, age 55 years.
    Salli Joseph was born November 30, 1889, in Neuenburg, Germany. He served in the German Army during World War I (1914-1918) and was awarded an Iron Cross. Shortly after that war, he married Martha Danziger and they had two children, Bernard, born November 1, 1920, and Margot, born March 24, 1924. Salli and Martha set up a small tailoring business in their home sewing women’s undergarments for various companies for which they were paid by the piece. The family was liberal in their Jewish beliefs. In 1934, Salli pulled Margot out of the public school and sent her to a Jewish elementary school, due to the increasing Nazi indoctrination of children at German public schools following Hitler’s appointment as Chancellor in 1933. Salli wanted to immigrate to Shanghai; however Martha refused to leave her family, so the family stayed in Berlin. After the Kristallnacht pogrom in November 1938, Salli and Martha began to look for ways to get out of Germany.

    One of Martha’s sisters had immigrated to the United States years earlier, and they attempted to get an affidavit from her so that the family could be put on the quota system for the United States. Both Salli and Martha had been born in West Prussia, and that placed them under the Polish quota system according to United States law. It was extremely hard to get a number with the Polish quota. They decided to send Bernard to Great Britain in 1939 as he was able to get a work visa; they allowed Margot to join Youth Aliyah, which would send her to Palestine on March 25, 1940.

    Salli and Martha were able to keep in contact with their children through relatives in the United States and, later, through the Red Cross, but they never saw them again. In one final letter to Martha’s relatives in the United States in 1943, Salli informed the family that they were being sent to a concentration camp. On March 6, 1943, they were sent by transport to Auschwitz concentration camp, where they were killed shortly after their arrival. Salli’s prisoner number was 107232, he was 57 years old.

    Physical Details

    Classification
    Military Insignia
    Category
    Medals
    Object Type
    Medals, German (lcsh)
    Physical Description
    Rectangular, striped cloth ribbon folded in half with 7 vertical stripes: black, white, black, red, black, white, black.
    Dimensions
    overall: Height: 3.500 inches (8.89 cm) | Width: 1.250 inches (3.175 cm)
    Materials
    overall : cloth

    Rights & Restrictions

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

    Keywords & Subjects

    Administrative Notes

    Provenance
    The ribbon was donated to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in 2005 by Margot Hamburger, the daughter of Salli Joseph.
    Record last modified:
    2022-07-28 18:29:56
    This page:
    https:​/​/collections.ushmm.org​/search​/catalog​/irn523239

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