Authors

Object ID

2019.2.111

Object Name

Envelope

Date

1944

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Description

Green envelope with censor tape of left edge, three German postal stamps on top right corner: green, red, and purple in that order.

Information Provided by Michael D. Bulmash:In the face of escalating persecution by the Nazi state, the Jehovah’s Witness held fast to their religious beliefs as dutiful servants of Jehovah. In refusing to submit to the authority of that state and swear allegiance to Hitler; in refusing to participate in elections; in their refusal to serve in the military, bear arms, submit to a draft, or serve in war related industries, or allow their children to join the Hitler youth; Jehovah’s Witness remained true to their calling, and to a resolute refusal to defer on matters of conscience to any other authority tan their faith. Jehovah’s Witness in Nazi Germany or the occupied countries were therefore publically humiliated, imprisoned, placed in concentration camps where they were distinguished from other prisoners by their distinctive purple triangle to refer to them as Bibelforscherinnen of Bible students. They were often made to endure extreme torture, and some were even executed. And while Jehovah’s Witnesses—unlike Jews—could escape persecution, punishment and death by renouncing their beliefs and go along with the Nazi program, few chose to do so.

Johanna Groen, born Johanna Van der Vijgh, is one of approximately 200-250 Jehovah’s Witnesses from the Netherlands sent to concentration camps after the German occupation. She is with her sister Hendrika van der Vijgh. The letter is addressed to a family member, possibly her father.

Dimensions

4 3/8 x 6 1/4"

Keywords

Jehovah's Witness, Netherlands, Amsterdam, Ravensbruck Concentration Camp, Johanna Groen, Hendrika van der Vijgh

Subcollection

Netherlands

Censored Cover Ravensbruch to Amsterdam from Dutch Jehovah's Witness

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Rights Statement

In Copyright - Educational Use Permitted.