A remarkable tribute piece, created to honor Karoline Cohn,
a young holocaust victim, is unveiled today by A.JAFFE, a heritage-driven jewelry company established in 1892. This pendant tells a tale of hope and reunion, as it was the key that brought together a family previously torn apart by the Holocaust and decades of separation.
Karoline wore her triangular pendant engraved with her birthdate, the city where she lived, and "Mazel Tov," while in the concentration camp where she died almost 80 years ago. While the details of Karoline's death are unclear, it is known that she lost the pendant while in the camp.
In 2016, archaeologists excavated the camp's site and discovered the pendant, which inspired a genealogist to take up the case and determine its owner, and go on to find that person's relatives. The pendant is nearly identical to one that belonged to Anne Frank, raising the hypothesis that its owner was a close friend or relative. Through painstaking research scouring tens of thousands of names in a Yad Vashem (the World Holocaust Remembrance Center) online deportation database, the genealogist discovered that only one name matched the birthdate and city engraving Karoline Cohn.
He traced Karoline's family tree and reached out to its living members to bring them into the discovery process. The result is a moving story that reunited a family of more than two dozen people from across the globe, all previously strangers, all because of the pendant. This captivating tale has been published in the New York Times and TIME Magazine, amongst other outlets.
A.JAFFE is commissioned by the family of Karoline Kohn, as the sole entity authorized to replicate the pendant. A.JAFFE worked with a member of her family, Barry Eisemann, who had imagery of this special piece. Together they created an exact replica, to give as a tribute to each member of the family, commemorating Karoline's life and championing their connection.
"Working on this pendant with A.JAFFE has brought a deeper significance to our family connection, past and present. It was my family's hope that sharing it with Karoline's relatives would further our bond and bring a sense of hope out of the tragedy that she suffered," describes Eisemann. "It's a motivation for our family to raise awareness of tolerance, and to see that such devastation never happens again. I chose to work with A.JAFFE to create this piece because I knew the team would inherently understand the deep meaning that this pendant holds."
"We are uniquely positioned to be able to work with the family on this project and it was a great honor to do so," says Sam Sandberg, Chairman of A.JAFFE. "We have more than 125 years of heritage at A.JAFFE, so we have the tools to make something highly unique and so meaningful for a family."