Owner of Nazi Tattoo Kit to Donate It to Haifa Holocaust Museum

The dies from a tattoo kit, and a manual, are displayed at an Israeli auction house in Gilo, Nov. 2. (REUTERS/Ronen Zvulun)

The anonymous seller of the Nazi tattoo kit that was used on prisoners in the Auschwitz extermination camp informed the Tel Aviv District Court on Thursday that he planned to bring the matter to a conclusion by donating the items to the Haifa Holocaust Museum.

The auction of the controversial items was announced by the Tzolman Auction house several weeks ago. Following outrage by Holocaust survivors, the Tel Aviv District Court temporarily halted the sale. The Center of Organizations of Holocaust Survivors filed a lawsuit against the auction house and the owner in an attempt to prevent the sale of the dies altogether.

During the first hearing on Tuesday, the head of the auction house, Meir Tzolman, asked for the name of the seller to remain anonymous due to the sensitive nature of the matter. The court informed the seller’s lawyers that he had eight days to make a decision with regard to the conflict over the items, which is when he decided to donate the items.

In a letter to the court, the seller explained that as someone who works in the field of Holocaust history and purchases items to keep its memory alive, he did not expect the auction to cause a storm.

The letter also stressed that all along the owner meant to sell the kits to “an individual who would then donate it to a Holocaust commemorative organization,” rather than to someone unsuitable.

The owner pointed out that “while he has no legal obligation to give away the items, he is willing to do so in light of the fact that at the end of the day, his only goal is to act for the commemoration of the Holocaust.”

He has decided to donate the dies to the Yad Ezer L’Chaver organization that runs the Haifa Holocaust Museum and works with survivors.

The matter did not sit well, however, with the Center of Organizations of Holocaust Survivors that wanted the items to be transferred to the Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum.

The seller has made his decision known to the court and it is now up to them to decide the fate of the items.