Correspondence regarding the donation of a piece of tattooed human skin to The Wiener Library. According to the donor, who had obtained it by the minister of justice of Luxemburg in 1945, the piece was one of four items used by a Ms. Koch to produce a lampshade in Dachau concentration camp.
Correspondence with Alexander, Hanns
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- ReferenceGB 1556 3000/9/1/54
- Dates of Creation10/05/1960 - 11/05/1960
- Language of MaterialEnglish
- Physical Description2 letters
Scope and Content
Administrative / Biographical History
Hanns Alexander (1917-2006) was a British merchant of Jewish-German descent. His family had fled to England in the mid-1930s. With the beginning of the war Hanns joined the Royal Army. As a member of its War Crimes Investigation Team he tracked down and arrested Gustav Simon (1945) as well as Rudolf Höss (1946). Later Alexander worked as a banker in London. See Harding, Th., http://wiener.soutron.net/Portal/Default/en-GB/RecordView/Index/63976, London, William Heinemann, 2013.
The production of lampshades from human skin refers presumably to Buchenwald concentration camp rather than Dachau. Additionally, the name 'Koch' refers most likely to Ilse Koch, wife of the first commandant of Buchenwald.