In this special exhibition, the Arolsen Archives and the Museum aan de Stroom (MAS) show, for the very first time, an extensive collection of original mementos stolen from 14 Belgian concentration camp prisoners.

When arriving at the German concentration camps, the prisoners were deprived of all their personal belongings by the Nazis. Such individual items, which were robbed from some 2500 former concentration camp prisoners from all over Europe, are still preserved at the Arolsen Archives. The organization launched the #StolenMemory campaign to encourage volunteers to help them search for the families of the persecutees in order to hand them back the objects.

Over 700 families were successfully found in this way – 18 of them in Belgium. We are very grateful that ten families have provided their ancestors’ personal objects for this exhibition.

Coinciding with the launch of the special exhibition at MAS, the container of the #StolenMemory traveling exhibition with biographies of persecutees from all over Europe will open its doors on the museum’s forecourt every day.

During the opening of the exhibition on May 4, there will be a handover of watches once owned by two Antwerp residents: René Vandelsen and Jan de Herdt who were both deported by the Nazis to concentration camps. More than 75 years after their personal items were stolen from them, their families will get the mementos back.


Opening: Thursday, May 3, 2023, 4:00 p.m.

The exhibition can be viewed at MAS daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. through May 22.


Museum aan de Stroom

Hanzestedenplaats 1

2000 Antwerp


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