Advanced Search

Learn About The Holocaust

Special Collections

My Saved Research




Skip to main content

Brown leather satchel used by a Polish Jewish prisoner

Object | Accession Number: 2016.151.2

Leather satchel used by Chana Pergerycht Wandersman to hold correspondence she received from family and friends during the time she was held at Parschnitz labor camp in German-occupied Czechoslovakia, from December 1941 to May 1945. She also used the bag similarly while living at Feldafing displaced persons (DP) camp in Germany. Before the Holocaust, Chana lived with her parents, Abram Mordka and Sheindl, and her five siblings in Będzin, Poland. The German army entered their town on September 4, 1939, three days after the German invasion of Poland. In December 1941, 15-year-old Chana was deported to Parschnitz labor camp, which was run by Organisation Schmelt, an extensive program of forced labor throughout East Upper Silesia. There, she was forced to work in a spinning mill run by a German firm. She exchanged letters and postcards with her family through July 1, 1943. In the postcards, they discussed having to move from Będzin into the Sosnowiec ghetto. The final liquidation of the ghetto began on August 1, and roughly 10,000 Jews were transported to Auschwitz concentration camp. Chana never heard from her family again, and it is likely that they were all murdered in the camp. Parschnitz was liberated by the Soviet Red Army on May 9, 1945. Following liberation, Chana ended up at Feldafing DP camp in the American zone of occupation in Germany. There she met David Wandersman, a fellow survivor, and they married in the summer of 1946. Together they immigrated to the United States on September 26, 1949.

use:  after 1941 December-1949 September
use: Parschnitz (Concentration camp); Poříčí (Královéhradecký kraj, Czech Republic)
use: Feldafing (Displaced persons camp); Feldafing (Germany)
Object Type
Briefcases (lcsh)
Credit Line
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Suzanne Wandersman
Record last modified: 2022-04-04 07:46:45
This page: