December 7, 2019

This Document Recorded Holocaust Atrocities — and Allowed Survivors to Remarry

Detail of a page from the Bergen-Belsen ledger to help prevent chained spouses after the Holocaust (Courtesy of Kedem auction house)

JERUSALEM (JTA) — An early ledger that documents eyewitness accounts of the deaths of Jews in Nazi camps is being auctioned in Jerusalem next week.

The document was compiled at the end of World War II by a rabbinical court at Bergen-Belsen as proof that Holocaust victims’ spouses were dead. That allowed the survivors to remarry under Jewish law.

It lists deaths that occurred at the Auschwitz, Treblinka and Bergen-Belsen Nazi camps.

The ledger, which is over 100 pages long, will go on sale at the Kedem auction house at an opening price of $4,000.

The list was kept in a German technical notebook. Each page includes a testimony signed by witnesses and a signed marriage permit for a remarriage, and is signed by known rabbis of the day.

The testimonies include information on selections for the gas chambers, the liquidation of ghettos and death marches, gas chambers, and the crematoria and shootings.