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  • Yad Vashem

    Yad Vashem's Holocaust History Museum. | Photo: Reuters

Published 1 August 2017

Preserved in digital form, the 38,779 letters, telegrams, newspaper clippings, notes, and reports were delivered to the museum.

The Argentine Foreign Ministry donated a collection of almost 40,000 WWII era documents to the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C.

Argentina Donates Nazi Artifact Haul to Holocaust Museum

Preserved in digital form, the 38,779 letters, telegrams, newspaper clippings, notes and reports from 1939 to 1950 were delivered to the museum.

Among the telegrams were communications of the Argentinean government and its embassy in Germany, dispatch reports from consulates and chancellors, as well as correspondence with countries outside the Axis Alliance.

The Secretary of International Cooperation, Ernesto Gaspari, met with museum directors Friday in Buenos Aires to sign over the memorabilia. The digital copies will be added to the international museum’s online database and made accessible to the public.

“There are two avenues of interest to us when it comes to Argentina,” museum project director for Central Europe, Latin America and Israel Anatol Steck told Newsweek. “One is that it has one of the largest Holocaust survivor communities in the world, and certainly the largest survivor community in Latin America. Also of interest, of course, is the flight of Nazi war criminals to Latin America. Many made their way to Argentina.”

Over 120,000 Jews immigrated to Argentina between 1918 and 1943 with an estimated 4,800 Holocaust survivors arriving after the war. However, they were not alone, with Nazi war criminals such as Josef Mengele, Adolf Eichmann, Erich Priebke taking refuge to the Latin American country.

This is the second installment donated to the museum, preceded in June with what is reported as one of the largest collections of Nazi artifacts in Argentina's history which include 75 perfectly preserved items from the era including a bust of Adolf Hitler, magnifying glasses in boxes engraved with swastikas, and a medical device used to measure head size.

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