Ghetto Notes

Discussion in 'Paper Money' started by petronius, Jan 28, 2013.

  1. petronius

    petronius Duke

    Yesterday, January 27, was the Holocaust Memorial Day.

    I would remember those who were forced to live through these experiences, showing some notes from ghettos.

    Formally issued by a Council of Elders (Judenrat), responsible for managing of the ghetto under the orders of Nazis, these notes, like so many things, served to give a sensation of "normality", of a life which continued even in small everyday actions, an illusion which even the persecuted people of the ghetto ended up clinging for lack of better.

    But, what was the function of ghettos is already clear in this statement, in December 1939, by Friedrich Ubelhor, civil accountable of Lodz ghetto, Poland:

    "Of course, the creation of the ghetto is only a temporary measure. I shall determine when and by what means the ghetto should be cleaned up by Jews. The ultimate goal, however, must be complete cauterization of this pestilential bubo."

    And in fact, at last, ghettos have been emptied, and their people brought to die in concentration camps :(

    20 mark, Lodz ghetto, Poland



    50 kronen, Theresienstadt ghetto, near Prague



    Do not forget.

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  3. petronius

    petronius Duke

    All the notes of Theresienstadt have the same design, changing only in size and color

    1, 2, 5 kronen



    10 kronen


    20 kronen

  4. petronius

    petronius Duke

    100 kronen, the higher value. This completes the set.



    In the past was believed that survived to the war no more than 200-300 sets, and they were higly sought and expensive.
    But in 1973, an American bulldozer, which was destroying the last structures of ghetto, discovered a box full of notes.
    The comparison among survived notes, and those found in the 70s', shows that all are original, and after discovery the price is greatly reduced.

  5. petronius

    petronius Duke

    Lodz notes are a bit more varied.

    50 pfennig



    1 mark



    The Lodz ghetto, opened in February 1940, was the first in time, and the second, after the one in Warsaw, as numerical strength, and he came to contain more than 160,000 Jews. It was closed in autumn 1944.
    In September 1944, as the Russian Army was approaching, the Nazis began the liquidation of ghetto. Tens of thousands men and women were deported to Auschwitz, exhausted as they were, were almost all immediately killed :(

  6. chrisild

    chrisild Coin Collector Supporter

    By the way, "Litzmannstadt" (the city name on the ghetto money) is not the German language version of the Polish name. Until April 1940, Łódź was simply Lodz or Lodsch in German; then the city was renamed after a German general and member of the nazi party.

    27 January is a memorial day here in Germany too, and usually the Bundestag (federal parliament) invites a Holocaust survivor who will then talk to the MPs. Not necessarily a Jew; in 2011 for example the speaker was a Dutch Sinto. This year's guest speaker will be 90-year-old Inge Deutschkron - future tense because 27 Jan was a Sunday. And instead of doing it today, the parliament made a decision which I think is good: They picked 30 January, the day when, in 1933, Adolf Hitler was appointed chief of government.

    Talking about those ghetto notes here, in the "Most Attractive" notes topic, is a little strange. They were perfidious rather than attractive: With złotych, those in the ghetto would have been able to buy, at least to a limited extent, things from "outside" and maybe smuggle them in. With such ghetto money, however ...

  7. scottishmoney

    scottishmoney Bammed

    Complete agreement and then some. Not sure how regular notgeld and now ghetto notes made it into this thread - I think they need own thread.
  8. desertgem

    desertgem MODERATOR Senior Errer Collecktor Moderator

    Moved to this separate thread.
  9. scottishmoney

    scottishmoney Bammed

    Thank you - will be an entity unto itself and serve to educate about this horrible time in history.
  10. Rebop

    Rebop Member

    Thank you for posting this. This is a piece of history I was unaware of.
  11. SteveInTampa

    SteveInTampa Innocent bystander

    I agree 100%, thank you.
  12. lettow

    lettow Senior Member


    Westerbork was in the Netherlands and served as a transit camp. Ann Frank went to Westerbork after her family's capture. From there she was sent to Auschwitz.
  13. Inquisitive

    Inquisitive Starting 2 know something

    The notes from Lodz were generally called "Rumkin"s or "Rumkies" after the head of the Judenrat, Chaim Rumkowski.

    With złotych, those in the ghetto would have been able to buy, at least to a limited extent, things from "outside" and maybe smuggle them in. With such ghetto money, however ...

    That was (part of) the point. The other part was that with Rumkies being the only valid currency inside, people were forced to trade their "hard" currency and goods for script that was worthless outside the Ghetto.
  14. Tyler

    Tyler Active Member

    Wow. The note's design is extremely disturbing. Thank you for sharing this.
  15. lettow

    lettow Senior Member

    Theresienstadt was in what is now the Czech Republic. It was the "model" camp that was shown to the International Red Cross. The notes for the camp were part of the ruse. Gestapo chief Heydrich objected to the original design of the notes which had a depiction of Moses that was "too Aryan".
  16. petronius

    petronius Duke

    Thank you desertgem.

  17. petronius

    petronius Duke

    A propaganda movie of this event, The Führer gives a city to the Jews, survives :confused:

  18. Conder101

    Conder101 Numismatist

    Interesting topic. I have a complete set of the Theresienstadt notes, I don't remember if I have any of the Lodz notes. I do have a complete set of the Lodz coins including the rejected and withdrawn design.
  19. Jacek

    Jacek New Member

    If it's not a problem, I'd love to see your whole set of Lodz coins. I'm a collector and researcher, so it interests me.
  20. MKent

    MKent Well-Known Member

    I learn something almost every time I get on CT thanks for sharing this information.
    LaCointessa likes this.
  21. LaCointessa

    LaCointessa Supporter! Supporter

    And we on the boards need another option "respect" because I can not quite get my finger to click on "like" for your post although I appreciate it and am thankful that you have posted it, I know it needs to be posted. Thank you.
    petronius likes this.
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