August 15, 2013
Rare ‘Schindler’s List’ documents sold at New Hampshire auction
Documents linked to Oskar Schindler, the German industrialist known for his efforts to save Jews from World War II concentration camps, were sold at auction for more than $122,000, a New Hampshire auction house said on Thursday.
The documents included a rare one-page letter, signed by Schindler and dated Aug. 22, 1944, sent from his enamelware factory in Krakow, Poland, where he employed more than 1,000 Jewish workers from a nearby Nazi concentration camp.
The letter was written on behalf of one of Schindler's employees, Adam Dziedzic, who had "received a clearings contract for unloading and assembling war-necessary machinery and has been sent to Sudetengau."
Schindler's story was recounted in the 1982 novel "Schindler's Ark" by Australian author Thomas Keneally and became the basis of Steven Spielberg's film "Schindler's List" in 1993 that won seven Academy Awards.
Schindler had learned in the summer of 1944 that the Nazis planned to close factories unrelated to the war effort. Through bribery and personal connections, he won permission to produce arms and move the factory and its workers to Brunnlitz, in Sudetenland, or Sudetengau, in what is now Czech Republic.
The nine or 10 lists of employees he submitted to the Nazis became known collectively as "Schindler's list."
RR Auction of Amherst, New Hampshire, said in a statement that an anonymous buyer bought the one-page letter on Wednesday night for $59,135 and paid $63,426 for construction plans that were part of Schindler's Krakow munitions factory used as a safe haven.
"These documents are especially desirable as there are very few from this period in Schindler's life, and their dates and locations 'bookend' the story surrounding the famous 'Schindler's List,'" RR Auction vice president Bobby Livingston said.
Editing by Scott Malone and Grant McCool