Death Camp Barracks Is Returned to Auschwitz

U.S. Holocaust Museum To Replace Exhibit

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By JTA

Published December 29, 2013.
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The U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum has returned a section of wooden barracks that was given on long-term loan by the Auschwitz museum 24 years ago.

The barracks — half of a wooden building in which Jewish prisoners slept while imprisoned in the death camp — arrived at Poland’s port of Gdynia on Sunday, the Associated Press reported, citing the website of the Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp museum.

The barracks will undergo conservation and be joined with its other half before going on display, according to the AP.

The U.S. museum borrowed the barracks in 1989; the contract was renewed in 1999 for another 10 years. In 2003, Poland enacted a law barring the loan of Polish historical artifacts abroad for more than five years.

The return of the barracks comes after several years of negotiations between Polish officials and Holocaust museum officials.

The barracks, the centerpiece of the Washington museum’s permanent collection, will be replaced by another set from Birkenau to be owned by the museum.


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