Holocaust survivor Batszewa Dagan donates lucky charm to Auschwitz museum


A curator at the Auschwitz-Birkenau Museum holds the pair of tiny shoes.

A 90-year-old Holocaust survivor has donated a tiny good luck charm that she says helped her live through three years in the Nazi concentration camp at Auschwitz.

Batszewa Dagan donated a pair of miniature shoes, measuring barely a centimetre in length, to the Auschwitz-Birkenau Museum, which is based at the site of the World War II death camp in Poland.

The Polish-born Israeli said the shoes were given to her as a teenager by a fellow female inmate who was missing her daughter.

Batszewa Dagan hands over good luck charm to Auschwitz Museum director“And she made me a surprise. She made these tiny shoes for me. She said, ‘Let them carry you to freedom’,” Ms Dagan said in a statement released on the museum website.

“And how did she make them? She found a piece of thin leather, somebody gave her a needle and she also had some thread… And she made these shoes.”

The woman, whose name and fate are lost to history, was a German Jew who had been deported to Auschwitz while her policeman husband and daughter stayed behind.

Ms Dagan said she risked her life to keep the shoes for 20 months, hiding them in a straw mattress.

Auschwitz museum director Piotr Cywiński said the item was “a very meaningful donation” and would sit well alongside other objects on display that had once been secretly kept by prisoners.

Ms Dagan, a poet and author of numerous publications, used to teach children and teenagers about the Holocaust.

She also spent time at other Nazi camps before moving to Israel after the war.

One million European Jews died between 1940 and 1945 at the Auschwitz camp in the southern city of Oswiecim.

More than 100,000 others, including non-Jewish Poles, Roma, Soviet prisoners of war and anti-Nazi resistance fighters, also died there, according to the museum.

A record 1.72 million people visited the site in 2015, 70 years after the Soviets liberated the death camp.

Originally published HERE.