Two-sided silk escape map of Western Europe carried by a US soldier
- Belgium and Germany (New Frontier), - Sheet C/43C- Sheet D/43D
- Object Type
Military maps (lcsh)
- Credit Line
- United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Marilyn D. Greenblatt
British made topographical silk escape map of Western Europe carried by First Lieutenant Leonard Greenblatt during his service as a US soldier in Germany in May 1945. The British issued this type of map to help soldiers find their way to safety if caught behind enemy lines. Silk maps were used because they were durable, easy to conceal, and made no noise. Leonard, age 23, enlisted in November 1941. He deployed with his unit, the 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 82nd Airborne Division, in April 1943 to French Morocco. Leonard was a platoon leader and participated in eight campaigns as the 504th advanced into Germany. On April 6, 1945, the unit crossed the Rhine near Hitsdorf, Germany, as a diversionary tactic to mislead the Germans for which it was awarded a Presidential citation. Leonard also was awarded a Bronze Star for his actions at Anzio. On May 2, the 82nd Airborne liberated Wobbelin concentration camp. Leonard visited Wobbelin, took photographs, and wrote a letter home about the atrocities he witnessed. On May 7, 1945, Germany surrendered. The 82nd Airborne was placed on occupation duty in Berlin. Leonard returned to the US in September and was discharged in November.
Record last modified: 2019-12-05 20:46:50
This page: https://collections.ushmm.org/search/catalog/irn77260
Also in Leonard Greenblatt collection
The collection consists of a silk escape map, a letter, and photographs relating to the experiences of Leonard Greenblatt as a soldier in the United States Army in Germany during World War II.
The Leonard Greenblatt papers consists of materials documenting the experiences of First Lieutenant Leonard Greenblatt of the 504 Parachute Infantry Regiment of the 82nd Airborne Division US Army. The papers include photographs taken by Greenblatt of the Wöbbelin concentration camp shortly after its liberation in May 1945. The photographs depict corpses piled in a building, an unidentified United States soldier standing near the building, and German civilians from the nearby towns who were forced to dig graves and bury the corpses. The papers also contains a letter dated May 6, 1945, written by Greenblatt to his girlfriend (later wife), Betty Mae Bender of Miami, Florida which describes his affection for her and his experiences at the liberated concentration camp. There is also a copy print of Greenblatt’s army unit.