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Allied Military Authority currency, 2 francs, for use in France, acquired by a US soldier

Object | Accession Number: 2013.442.19

Allied military currency, 2 francs, issued for use in occupied France acquired by Captain James (Jim) Kirkebo, who served in the United States Army from 1940-1945, including combat duty with the Thunderbolt Division in Europe from December 1944-May 1945. The note was printed by the British and Americans for the June 1944 D-Day invasion. Military currency or occupation money was produced for use by military personnel in occupied territories. The notes for different currencies: lire, francs, kroner, marks, schillings, and yen, had similar designs for ease of production. Kirkebo, age 19, enlisted in the Army in September 1940. In August 1942, 2nd Lieutenant Kirkebo became commanding officer of C Company, 21st Armored Infantry Battalion, 11th Armored Division, Third Army. In December 1944, Kirkebo's unit landed in Normandy, and defended Bastogne during the Battle of the Bulge. The 11th Armored spearheaded the Allied advance into Germany and pushed through to Austria. Kirkebo received a battlefield promotion to captain on February 1, 1945. On May 5 and 6, soldiers from the 11th Armored liberated Gusen and Mauthausen concentration camps. At Mauthausen, they discovered over 19,000 starving inmates. The unit was tasked with caring for the inmates and improving camp conditions. On May 7, 1945, Germany surrendered. Kirkebo was on occupational duty until October when he returned to the US. Kirkebo was awarded a Silver Star and Bronze Star for his bravery in action.

Date
1944  (issue)
Geography
issue : France
Language
French
Classification
Exchange Media
Category
Money
Credit Line
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of the Estate of James Edward Kirkebo
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Record last modified: 2018-01-11 14:25:37
This page: https://collections.ushmm.org/search/catalog/irn84707