(JTA) – A tiny carved wooden clog that once belonged to a woman the Nazis deported to the Auschwitz death camp has been discovered after more than 70 years.
Smaller than a matchstick, the pendant “is a real piece of art from Auschwitz,” Agnieszka Molenda, who runs the Foundation of Memory Sites near Auschwitz-Birkenau in Poland, told the Daily Mail last week about the recent discovery of the object in an attic of a barrack at Auschwitz.
Prisoners were not allowed to make, wear or own such items. Violating the prohibition could mean a swift execution or savage beating.
“The tiny carved clog is just 7 millimeters [0.28 inches] long and hangs on a small chain, indicating that a prisoner wore it as jewelry,” she said.
The object’s origin and owner remain a mystery.
It was found this month during maintenance work in the attic of a building of the Budy-Bor Auschwitz subcamp, near the main death camp set up by Nazi Germany during World War II in occupied Poland.
The building was the site of a bloody massacre on Oct. 5, 1942, when camp guards bludgeoned to death 90 French-Jewish female prisoners.
The discovery triggered some speculation in the Dutch media that the clog, a national symbol in the Netherlands, belonged to a Holocaust victim from that country.