Correspondence with Alexander, Hanns

  • This material is held at
  • Reference
      GB 1556 3000/9/1/54
  • Dates of Creation
      10/05/1960 - 11/05/1960
  • Language of Material
  • Physical Description
      2 letters

Scope and Content

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.

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.,, London, William Heinemann, 2013.

Access Information


Archivist's Note

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.

Geographical Names