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And These are Their Names... Identifying the Death March Victims Buried in a Mass Grave in Poland
Yad Vashem And These are Their Names... Identifying the Death March Victims Buried in a Mass Grave in Poland

A Glove Knitted By Kala Selzer (née Londner) When She Was a Prisoner in the Grünberg labor Camp

Kala was born in 1923 in Dąbrowa Górnicza in the Zaglebie region, Poland. In 1940 they began to concentrate the Jews of the city in a ghetto, the schools were closed and the Jewish community began to organize activities and lessons for the children who had been left without any framework. Kala took a course in knitting and decoration and the skills that she gained served her later when she was in the camp.

In 1942 Kala was deported to the labor camp Silesia in Grünberg where she worked in a textile factory. The factory was divided into various departments: reduction to raw materials of clothing and other fabrics, spooling thread, production of new fabrics and sewing fabrics to produce sheets and other textile products. Initially Kala worked in the thread department and was later transferred to the weaving department.

Kala received packages from her parents until summer 1942 in which they sent her wool and knitting needles. She would knit for her friends among the inmates and there were occasions when she was requested to knit items of clothing for the commandants of the camp, something which earned her additional food rations.

At the end of 1944 rumours began to spread through the camp about the advance of the front, this was soon followed by an order from the camp leadership to prepare for evacuation. Kala still had clothes and shoes from home. She packed a rucksack containing clothes, among them this glove, and photos that her mother had managed to send her from the ghetto. Towards morning they set out on the death march.

During one of the nightly stops, Kala and a friend decided to escape. They heard about an opening in the fence of Christianstadt camp where they had been gathered at the end of the day and at the first opportunity they slipped out to the fields and escaped.

Yad Vashem Artifacts Collection Gift of Kala Selzer (née Londner), Jerusalem