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Silver plated ashtray with an engraving of Skansen Kronan acquired by a former concentration camp inmate

Object | Accession Number: 2013.496.2

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    Silver plated ashtray with an engraving of Skansen Kronan acquired by a former concentration camp inmate

    Overview

    Brief Narrative
    Ashtray acquired by 21 year old Sali Berl circa 1946 in Goteborg, Sweden, while she was recovering from severe malnutrition and typhus resulting from over 3 years as a concentration camp prisoner. When Sali was liberated from Bergen-Belsen on April 15, 1945, she weighed 54 pounds. The Red Cross hospitalized her and then sent her to Sweden to recuperate. On March 15, 1939, Sali’s hometown, Brno, was annexed by Nazi Germany. In September 1941, Sali’s father Herman, a leader in the community, was executed by the Gestapo. In December, Sali’s older brother Leon was deported to Auschwitz, where he later died. On March 22, 1942, Sali, her mother Helene, and her siblings Malvine and Arnold were sent to Theresienstadt ghetto-labor camp. Helene was deported to Auschwitz on March 20, 1944, and immediately sent to the gas chambers. On October 9, Sali and her siblings were deported to Auschwitz. Arnold was killed in the gas chambers upon arrival. Sali and Malvine stayed together and were sent to Kurzbach labor camp on October 23. On January 21, 1945, the sisters were sent on a forced march to Gross-Rosen concentration camp. In early February, they were sent to Buchenwald, then, in March, to Bergen-Belsen. The camp was liberated by British forces on April 15, the day Sali's sister Malvine, 24, died of starvation. Sali emigrated to the United States from Sweden in October 1946.
    Date
    received:  1945 December-1946 October
    Geography
    received: Gothenburg (Sweden)
    Credit Line
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Ruth Bogatyrow Kraft
    Markings
    top, above image, engraved : GÖTEBORG. SKANSEN KRONAN
    bottom, center, engraved : FORSILVR [silver plate]
    Contributor
    Subject: Sali Bogatyrow
    Biography
    Sali Berl was born on October 31, 1924, in Brno, Czechoslovakia (now Czech Republic), to Herman and Helene Tellermann Berl. Sali had three siblings: Malvine, born on January 18, 1921, Leon, born May 1, 1922, and Arnold, born on November 7, 1926. Sali’s father Herman was born on April 21, 1895, in Radomysl Wielki, Russia (now Poland), to Israel and Fanny Berl. He had four brothers. Sali’s mother Helene was born on November 1, 1895, in Tarnow, Russia (Poland), to Abraham and Fanny Tellermann. The family owned a candy and fruit business. They were prosperous and employed domestic help. Sali’s father Herman was the president of Avas Achim synagogue. Sali attended the Jewish community school until high school, then attended a commercial school run by the city of Brno, where she learned corsetry and dressmaking. The family planned on immigrating to Palestine or the United States.

    On March 15, 1939, Germany invaded and annexed the Czech provinces of Bohemia and Moravia, including Brno. In 1939, Sali’s father Herman’s business was confiscated. On September 21, 1941, Herman, and his brother Leo, were arrested by the Gestapo because they were community leaders. They were imprisoned in Spilberk Castle. On September 30, 1941, Herman was executed by the Germans, who returned his ashes to the family. In December, Sali’s older brother Leon, a locksmith, was taken away. On March 18, 1942, Sali, her mother, Helene, and her siblings, Malvine and Arnold, were arrested in Brno. On March 22, they were sent to Theresienstadt ghetto-labor camp on transport Ad. Sali was assigned number AD-699, Helene number AD-696, Malvine number AD-697, and Arnold number AD-698. They had very little food and were physically abused. On March 20, 1944, Sali’s mother was sent away. On October 9, Sali, Malvine, and Arnold were sent to Auschwitz concentration camp on transport Ep, arriving on October 11. Sali and Malvine were separated from Arnold. On October 23, Sali and Malvine were sent to Kurzbach, a subcamp of Gross-Rosen concentration camp in Germany (now Bukolowo, Poland). On January 21, 1945, Sali and Malvine were sent on a 6 day forced march to Gross-Rosen. In early February, the camp was evacuated because of the advance of Soviet troops. The sisters were sent by train to Buchenwald concentration camp. In March, Sali and Malvine were sent to Bergen-Belsen concentration camp. Sali was liberated on April 15 by British forces. Malvine died of starvation that day.

    Sali was very ill and weighed only 54 pounds. The International Red Cross immediately sent her to a hospital in Bergen for treatment for typhus and malnutrition. She was sent to Sweden in July. She was placed in a temporary hospital in Malmo, then went to a hospital in Karlstad in August. After she had partially regained her health, Sali went to Gothenburg on December 5. She worked in a stocking factory. Sali contacted her relatives in Palestine and the US. Her paternal uncle Chaim fled to Palestine in 1939, just before the outbreak of war. Sali placed an ad with the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society, and was able to find her mother’s aunt, Minnie Tellermann Springer, in New York. Minnie’s four sons, as well as Sali’s maternal aunt, Sally Tellermann Garfunkel, and maternal cousin, Irving Garfunkel, sponsored her immigration. On October 5, 1946, Sali sailed from Gothenburg on the SS Drottningholm, arriving in New York on October 14. She settled in New York and worked as a seamstress. After Sali became a naturalized American citizen in 1952, she went to Israel to visit her paternal uncle Chaim. In Israel, she met Moshe Bogatyrow (1919-1982), who survived Łódź ghetto and Czestochowa and Buchenwald concentration camps. Moshe’s brother had escaped and survived in the Soviet Union, but his mother Rachel died of starvation in Łódź ghetto on May 10, 1942. Postwar, Moshe was interned in Cyprus after attempting to illegally emigrate to Palestine and arrived in Israel in January 1949. Sali and Moshe married on March 3, 1953, in Haifa, Israel. Sali returned to New York in May 1953 and Moshe followed soon after. Moshe Americanized his name to Murray. The couple settled in Flushing and had a daughter. Almost all of Sali’s family perished in the Holocaust. Sali’s brother Leon arrived in Auschwitz on December 12, 1941, and was assigned prisoner number 24375. He was killed in Auschwitz on March 25, 1942. Sali’s mother Helene was killed in Auschwitz on March 22, 1944. Her brother Arnold was killed upon arrival in Auschwitz in October 1944. Her father’s two brothers were deported from Brno to Minsk where they perished. Sali was active in the women’s survivor community and founded a local women’s survivor chapter and a publication, Voice of the Woman Survivor. Sali, 88, died on March 26, 2013, in Flushing, New York.

    Physical Details

    Language
    Swedish
    Object Type
    Ashtrays (lcsh)
    Physical Description
    Circular silver plated metal ashtray with bronze wash, chiefly on the engraving. It has a shallow central well and a flat, incised rim with a rolled edge, with 3 attached, evenly spaced curved rectangular rests for cigarettes. The well has an engraving of a large stone fortress with a crenellated tower. In front of the building is an arched stone entryway over a curved road between stone walls, with a hill on the left. There is engraved text and a maker's mark.
    Dimensions
    overall: Height: 5.125 inches (13.018 cm) | Width: 4.875 inches (12.383 cm) | Depth: 0.375 inches (0.953 cm)
    Materials
    overall : silver, metal

    Rights & Restrictions

    Conditions on Access
    No restrictions on access
    Conditions on Use
    No restrictions on use

    Keywords & Subjects

    Administrative Notes

    Provenance
    The ashtray was donated to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in 2013 by Ruth Bogatyrow Kraft, the daughter of Sali Berl Bogatyrow.
    Funding Note
    The cataloging of this artifact has been supported by a grant from the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany.
    Record last modified:
    2022-09-12 12:36:37
    This page:
    https:​/​/collections.ushmm.org​/search​/catalog​/irn90854

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