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Nazi Germany, 2 Rentenmark note acquired by a US soldier

Object | Accession Number: 2013.442.29

Two [zwei] rentenmark note issued in Nazi Germany acquired by Captain James Edward Kirkebo, who served in the US Army from 1940-1945, and fought in Europe with the Thunderbolt Division from December 1944-May 1945. It was first issued by the Weimar government as emergency currency during the runaway inflation of the 1920s, but was reissued and remained in circulation until 1945. Kirkebo, 19, enlisted in the US Army in 1940 and, in August 1942, 2nd Lt. Kirkebo became commanding officer, C Company, 21st Armored Infantry Battalion, 11th Armored Division. In December 1944, Kirkebo's unit landed in Normandy, defended Bastogne during the Battle of the Bulge, and spearheaded the Allied advance into Germany. 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, the unit was tasked with caring for 19,000 starving inmates. On May 7, 1945, Germany surrendered. Kirkebo was awarded a Silver Star and 3 Bronze Stars for his leadership and heroism in action.

issue:  approximately 1937 January 30
issue: Germany
Exchange Media
Credit Line
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of the Estate of James Edward Kirkebo
Record last modified: 2023-08-28 10:32:18
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