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Ritual slaughter knife with a wooden case used by a shochet

Object | Accession Number: 1992.8.33 a-b

Shechita [ritual slaughter] knife and case used by Isaac Ossowski, the head shochet for the Alte Shule in Berlin who left the country because of the targeted persecution of Jews by the government of Nazi Germany. A shochet is specially trained in the laws and procedures of shehitah, the Jewish religious and humane method of slaughtering animals and poultry. It requires years of study in the laws of shechita, as well as animal anatomy and pathology. Rabbi Ossowski was a prominent member of the Jewish community in Berlin. He was head shochet [ritual slaughterer], mohel [practioner of ritual circumcision], sofer [scribe], and hazan [cantor or musical prayer leader] at the Alte Shul [Old Synagogue]. After Hitler was appointed Chancellor in 1933, increasingly severe sanctions were enacted against Jews. The Ossowski family was repeatedly questioned by the SS (Schutzstaffel; Protection Squadrons) who gathered intelligence on opponents of the Nazi state and policed racial purity. In 1934, Isaac sent his youngest son, 14 year old Sol, to Lithuania to study at a yeshiva. In 1936, his sons, Joseph and Leo, left for the United States. In 1938, Isaac and his wife, Frida, and their daughter, Nettie, escaped Nazi Germany and joined Joseph in the US. Sol joined them there in 1939.

emigration:  1938
use:  approximately 1910-1938
use: Berlin (Germany)
Jewish Art and Symbolism
Credit Line
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Sol Oster
Record last modified: 2022-07-28 18:22:10
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