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White damask napkin with embroidered monograms saved by a German Jewish prewar emigre

Object | Accession Number: 2013.430.5

Linen napkin embroidered with their initials brought by Jella Furth Karlsruher and her daughter Ruth, age 18, when they escaped Nazi Germany in August 1940. The napkin and other items from her trousseau were sent in crates to Holland and then later to New York. When Hitler came to power in Germany in 1933, Nathan, Jella and Ruth were living in Mannheim. Following Nathan’s death in October 1933, Jella and Ruth moved in with Jella’s daughter from her first marriage, Irene Schweizer, her husband Friedrich, and son Hans. Ruth experienced anti-Semitism constantly. During Kristallnacht on November 10, 1938, Friedrich was sent to Dachau and released in January 1939. Friedrich, Irene, and Hans fled to England in summer 1939. From September to November 1939, Ruth performed forced agricultural labor. In March 1940, Irene left for the US and then arranged the necessary money and documentation for Jella and Ruth to emigrate. They received visas in May but had to change their travel plans several times because of the war. In August, Jella and Ruth left Berlin and traveled through the Soviet Union, Manchuria, Korea, and Japan, until arriving in Chicago in September 1940.

emigration:  1940 August
use: Mannheim (Germany)
Furnishings and Furniture
Household linens
Object Type
Napkins (lcsh)
Credit Line
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Audrey Eisenmann and Geoffrey Eisenmann
Record last modified: 2022-08-12 07:03:05
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