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Opening Hours:

Sunday to Thursday: ‬09:00-17:00

Fridays and Holiday eves: ‬09:00-14:00

Yad Vashem is closed on Saturdays and all Jewish Holidays.

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A Purim Noisemaker, Given to Holocaust Survivor Marcel Micenmacher by his Parents in 1941, Recently Donated to Yad Vashem

21 March 2024

Yad Vashem, the World Holocaust Remembrance Center, has received a rare artifact that highlights the resilience and endurance of one family amidst the horrors of the Holocaust. The family of Marcel Micenmacher has recently donated his treasured noisemaker to Yad Vashem's collections. The cherished gift, handcrafted by Marcel's father, Kalmen Micenmacher, was given to him while interned in a transit camp. Inscribed on the noisemaker is a dedication in French that reads "souvenir to my son Marcel" and indicates it came from Beaune La Rolande on 26 August 1941. This item is one of the only mementos Marcel still had from his parents, who were murdered in Auschwitz in 1942.

Marcel used the noisemaker during the holiday of Purim, to drown out the name of Haman, the villain in the Purim story. According to Jewish tradition, the noisemaker symbolizes not only the merrymaking of the joyous holiday, but the survival of the Jewish people from their enemies throughout time. This archival item continues to echo Marcel's personal story and the enduring legacy of hope amidst the darkness.

Marcel's parents, Anne and Kalmen Micenmacher, moved to France from Poland before World War II. They lived together with their son Marcel in Paris's 19th District before the events of the Holocaust began. After the Nazi occupied France, Marcel's father was interned in the Beaune La Rolande transit camp. According to the Pages of Testimony Marcel filled out in the 1990's, both his parents were arrested on 16 July 1942 and deported a week later on 24 July 1942 to Auschwitz on Transport 10, where they were murdered shortly after arrival. Thankfully, Marcel managed to escape the same fate and was able to fill out Pages of Testimony with Yad Vashem in memory of his parents years later.

Carefully safeguarded by Marcel throughout the years, the noisemaker had remained one of Marcel's only possessions from his past. Now, Marcel's noisemaker relic has found sanctuary at Yad Vashem, where it will serve as a powerful reminder of the six million Jewish men, women and children hunted, persecuted and ultimately murdered all for being Jewish.

The noisemaker was given to Yad Vashem by the famous Holocaust historian Serge Klarsfeld together with the Gathering the Fragments program. This crucial program collects Holocaust-era documents, photographs and artifacts that can be used use to tell the story of the Holocaust for future generations. These items are everlasting witness to the atrocities of the past and serve as a poignant testament to the victims and survivors of the Holocaust.