Download Full Text (574 KB)
Photo of man with glasses wearing striped concentration camp hat and shirt labelled with "82221." Back of photo signed "René Lambrechts" near bottom.
Information Provided by Michael D. Bulmash:
René Lambrechts was a Belgian author and hymnist. During WWII, he had been a liaison officer in the Belgian resistance. Arrested in November 1943, he spent the remainder of the war in various concentration camps, including the infamous Dora-Mittelbau near Nordhausen, where he was severely injured.
After the war Lambrechts wrote Wir Muselmanner about his experiences in captivity. “Muselmanner” is a derogation of Moslems, but in the vernacular of the concentration camps it refers to the walking dead, those prisoners who, dispirited and in increasingly poor physical health give up all hope for survival. Lambrechts also devoted himself to ethnography and hymnology, publishing collections of folk tales and hymns. He co-founded the museum Die Swane and became its first conservator.
In the photograph, Lambrechts is wearing his concentration camp garments. Verso is text written to his friend and fellow prisoner Jos Veerman, an inmate from concentration camp Dora-Mittelbau and political prisoner from Gross Strehlitz. Lambrechts writes: To Jos Veerman, my brother from the hell of hate and murder. As a remembrance of our Musselman-ship. Rene Lambrechts 12 December 1946.
[Related item: 2019.2.104]
5 1/2 x 3 1/2"
Rene Lambrechts, Joseph Veerman, Dora-Mittelbau, Muselmanner
"Belgian Author René Lambrechts (1923-1981) Photograph with Written Statement to Friend" (1946). Bulmash Family Holocaust Collection. 2019.2.103.