This discharge certificate allowed for the liberation of Karl Cahn from Buchenwald camp. Karl was arrested during the pogrom of Kristallnacht, the “Night of Broken Glass”, and sent to the camp on November 11, 1938.
Karl Cahn's Discharge Certificate
The Cahn Family Helped by Canadians
The Cahn family owned a jewellery factory before the war. They were partners and friends with Canadian businessman William Birks, son of the founder of Henry Birks & Sons jewellery. Facing the rise of antisemitism, Karl’s mother wrote to William Birks asking for help. Birks contacted Canadian Prime Minister William Lyon Mackenzie King directly and obtained visas for the entire Cahn family.
The visa permitted the liberation of Karl Cahn from Buchenwald. With his wife, mother-in-law and three sons Frank, Robert and Paul, he escaped Germany and moved to Canada. The family arrived in Halifax on March 5, 1939.
Frank Cahn donated this document to the Montreal Holocaust Museum in 1993.
This project is part of the implementation of the Plan culturel numérique du Québec.