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Jack Waksal photograph collection

Document | Digitized | Accession Number: 2000.284

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    Jack Waksal photograph collection

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    The Jack Waksal photograph collection consists of 18 photograph prints taken for identification cards in Kruszyna labor camp (Kruszyna, Silesian Voivodeship) in 1941. All of the men depicted in the photographs perished in the Holocaust. The photographs were acquired by Jack Waksal, a Holocaust survivor originally from Jedlińsk, Poland, after the war from the photographer. Four of the photographs have a small piece of paper affixed to the back with a typed name: “Slifkowich,” “Uer Nifeld,” “Sraria Fishman,” and “Kirshenbam Leizer.” Additionally, there is a photograph depicting a street scene in the Jedlińsk ghetto, circa 1941-circa 1942.
    inclusive:  1941-circa 1942
    Credit Line
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Jack Waksal
    Collection Creator
    Jack Waksal
    Jack Waksal was born Yitzhak Wakszal on 15 September 1924 in Jedlińsk, Poland (immigration paperwork incorrectly lists his birth year as 1921) to Schlomo David Wakszal and Pessa Schemara Wakszal. His father Schlomo David Wakszal worked as a Kosher butcher (shochet), and was an active Zionist and member of the Jewish community of Jedlińsk. He married Pessa Schemara through an arranged marriage. Jack had one brother, Yechiel, and two sisters, Yochevet and Brucha.

    After the German invasion of Poland in September 1939, Jedlińsk was occupied by the Nazis, and a ghetto was established. Jack’s family was moved to Kruszyna labor camp in 1940, where work identification cards were issued. Jack escaped the labor camp in November 1941 and hid in the nearby woods. He later snuck into Wsoła labor camp, where his brother coincidentally was also located. They were transferred to Pionki labor camp near the end of 1942. Jack was reunited with his childhood friend and future wife, Sabina Koslowska, while in Pionki.

    Jack, his brother Yechiel, and 13 others escaped the camp around May 1944 and hid in a nearby forest until liberation by the Russian Army in January 1945. Several members of his group were killed, including his brother and Yechiel’s fiance Chavah Wakszal, and his cousins Yechiel Kirshenbaum and Pearl Lindzen.

    After liberation, Jack worked for the Russian Army until the end of the war, and then returned to Jedlińsk to search for any surviving family members. He was reunited with Sabina, who was a survivor of Auschwitz and several other camps, and his uncle Moshe Wakszal, but the rest of his family perished. They received permission to go to Germany, and all three went to Regensburg displaced persons camp. Jack and Sabina married in the camp on 28 April 1946. Their son Samuel was born 8 September 1947 in Paris, France. The family immigrated to the United States in November 1950 and settled in Dayton, Ohio. Jack’s uncle Moshe immigrated to Israel.

    Physical Details

    1 folder
    System of Arrangement
    The collection is arranged as a single file.

    Rights & Restrictions

    Conditions on Access
    There are no known restrictions on access to this material.
    Conditions on Use
    Material(s) in this collection may be protected by copyright and/or related rights. You do not require further permission from the Museum to use this material. The user is solely responsible for making a determination as to if and how the material may be used.

    Keywords & Subjects

    Topical Term
    Labor camps--Poland.
    Geographic Name
    Jedlińsk (Poland)

    Administrative Notes

    The collection was donated to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum by Jack Waksal in 1993.
    Record last modified:
    2023-03-08 08:38:46
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