Some pieces of jewelry are bought in the spur of the moment. Often an impulsive buy, a pair of earrings for your wife because you think they look nice or a necklace for your girlfriend because although it may not be expensive it is still something nice for her to have.
But buying a ring is different, it always has a profound meaning. It indicates the love between 2 people, with a ring they show this love to the world. Or it is an acknowledgement for a great goal which has been achieved. A ring also means respect for one another.
In May 2016 staff at The Auschwitz Museum found am enamel mug with a false bottom. Hidden in the double bottom was a ring and a necklace.
Due to the passage of time, the materials had gradually degraded, and the second bottom separated from the mug exposing the hidden treasure.
I don’t care about the monetary value of the ring for there is an emotional story behind it, It is a story of hope. The owner of the ring clearly hoped that one day he or she would be reunited with the piece of jewelry. It is also a story of fear for the owner knew if the ring was taken off him or her it would be lost forever. Unfortunately the owner was never reunited with the piece of jewelry.
The ring and the cup also reveal a more sinister story.
The Nazis constantly lied to the Jews deported for extermination. They were told they were going to be resettled, with a new job and place to live
They allowed the victims take some luggage with them. Knowing well that they would take things were precious to them thus ensuring they would take the jewelry,clothing and other valuable items from them before they sent them to be gassed.
I don’t know if the owner of the ring survived, I hope they did but I fear they didn’t.
And sometimes a ring tells a story about a reluctant hero.
The story emerged in an unlikely place, a BBC show called “Antiques Roadshow” It was told by 2 women. The women were nieces of Jane Haining, the ring belonged to her.
Jane worked as a missionary for the Church of Scotland in Budapest.The mission had established a school in 1846, with funds provided by Jews converted to Christianity. Haining looked after 50 of the school’s 400 pupils ,the majority were Jewish.
As the war broke out she was actually on holidays in Cornwall, and she could have stayed there saved and sound but she decided to return to Hungary to the Mission in Budapest. She was arrested by the Nazis in 1944,accused of working among Jews and listening to the BBC. She was sent to Auschwitz, where she was tattooed as prisoner 79467. She died in Auschwitz on July 17. 194. Haining is the only Scot to be officially honoured for giving her life to help Jews in the Holocaust.
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