Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation

Released: Heartbreaking photos of Jews in a Poland ghetto

    Putting a brave face on it: residents of the Kutno Ghetto in central Poland
    Putting a brave face on it: residents of the Kutno Ghetto in central Poland

    Young women daintily made up and wearing their Shabbat best, grinning men stand by a shelter in the morning sunshine — faces and figures so vividly captured that they could have been photographed yesterday.

    A set of heartbreaking colour portraits of Jews in the Polish ghettos of Kutno and Warsaw, taken between 1938 and 1940, were published for the first time by US magazine Life last week to coincide with the 72nd anniversary of the opening of the Warsaw Ghetto.

    Shockingly, the photographs of apparently willing subjects were taken by high-ranking Nazi photographer Hugo Jaeger, whose colour and 3D-capable camera was supplied by the German hierarchy.

    The photos show the residents of the ghettos apparently at ease with their photographer, smiling at the camera, with almost no military presence visible.

    No less remarkable than the photos themselves is the manner in which they reached Life magazine.

    The photographs show unidentified residents in early 1940
    The photographs show unidentified residents in early 1940

    Towards the end of the war, Allied troops found a satchel containing incriminating photographs of Hitler and the upper echelons of the Third Reich in Jaeger’s house, along with the photos of the ghettos.

    Also in the satchel was a bottle of brandy and an ivory gambling toy. The soldiers failed to spot the photographs; instead they removed the bottle of brandy and the toy and sat down with them for a game. Jaeger drank and played with them, while the photos remained undiscovered in the satchel.

    After the soldiers left, Jaeger buried the photos in metal jars in a field outside his town, and using a map he had drawn, dug them up a decade later and hid them in a Swiss bank. Finally, in 1965, he sold the photos to Life, which published them last week.

World

Anthony Weiner jailed for 21 months

Michael Daventry

Monday, September 25, 2017

Anthony Weiner jailed for 21 months
World

Jewish groups angered at Trump HMD message

Daniel Sugarman

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Jewish groups angered at Trump HMD message
World

It's Chanucah Song time!

Michael Moran

Thursday, December 1, 2016

It's Chanucah Song time!
World

Rabbi among Mexico quake victims

Daniel Sugarman

Monday, September 25, 2017

Rabbi among Mexico quake victims
World

Netanyahu invited to meet Abbas in Paris

Rosa Doherty

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Netanyahu invited to meet Abbas in Paris
World

Will the Austrian election make Norbert Hofer E...

Sonia Zhuravlyova

Will the Austrian election make Norbert Hofer E...
World

Trump to crackdown on Iran and its "terrorist minions", says Pence

JC Reporter

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Trump to crackdown on Iran and its "terrorist minions", says Pence
World

'Jews should pay for their own security' say Swiss

Daniel Sugarman

Sunday, December 4, 2016

'Jews should pay for their own security' say Swiss
World

Australian abuse report

Henry Benjamin

Australian abuse report