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Timeless

Oskar Schindler’s possessions auctioned for nearly $50,000

Items sold include watch and compass German industrialist and his wife are said to have used to flee advancing Russians

A picture of Oskar Schindler (L) and his wristwatch, which were sold at an auction in March 2019. (RR Auction)
A picture of Oskar Schindler (L) and his wristwatch, which were sold at an auction in March 2019. (RR Auction)

A number of personal possessions of Oskar Schindler, the German industrialist who saved some 1,200 Jews during the Holocaust, were auctioned for tens of thousands of dollars, the auction house said Thursday.

Among the items to be sold were a compass that Schindler and his wife are said to have used while fleeing advancing Russian troops in 1945, as well as a pair of fountain pens, a business card and a medal awarded to German soldiers who took part in the Nazi occupation of the Sudetenland and Czechoslovakia.

Also sold at the auction was Schindler’s wristwatch, which he was believed to have purchased while living in Argentina following World War II, according to Boston-based RR Auction.

The objects fetched $46,303 in total, more than the $25,000 they were expected to go for when they hit the auction block last month.

A compass that Oskar Schindler and his wife are believed to be have used to flee advancing Russian soldiers. (RR Auction)

“We felt very strongly that keeping the archive together as a single lot was the best way to present this historic grouping to the public and are extremely pleased with the results of the sale,” Bobby Livingston, the executive vice president of RR Auction, said in a statement.

“Schindler struggled in everything he ever did before and after the war, so we are thrilled with the international media attention and honored to have had the opportunity to share his story,” Livingston added.

The possessions were from the estate of Schindler’s wife, Emilie, who died in 2001.

Schindler, a Nazi party member whose story was told in the 1993 Oscar-winning movie “Schindler’s List,” saved Jews by employing then in his enamelware and munitions factory in Krakow. During the war years, he spent his entire fortune on bribes of Nazi officials and supplies his workers needed to survive, emerging from the war a destitute man.

A “Schutz-Pass” signed by Raoul Wallenberg. (RR Auction)

He died in 1974.

Schindler is buried on Mount Zion in Jerusalem, the only member of the Nazi party Israel has allowed to receive such an honor, and has a tree planted in his name at Yad Vashem’s Avenue of the Righteous.

Other items sold at the auction included a passport signed by Swedish diplomat Raoul Wallenberg, who saved tens of thousands of Hungarian Jews from deportation to the gas chambers by issuing such documents.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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