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Holocaust Badges collection

Identifier: 2020-008-h-r

Scope and Contents

From 1938, Jews in the concentration camps were identified by a yellow star sewn onto their prison uniforms. After 1939 and with some variation from camp to camp, the categories of prisoners were easily identified by a marking system combining a colored inverted triangle with lettering. The badges sewn onto prisoner uniforms enabled SS guards to identify the alleged grounds for incarceration.

Criminals were marked with green inverted triangles, political prisoners with red, "asocials" (including Roma, nonconformists, vagrants, and other groups) with black or—in the case of Roma in some camps—brown triangles. Homosexuals were identified with pink triangles and Jehovah's Witnesses with purple ones. A Jewish political prisoner, for example, would be identified with a yellow triangle beneath a red triangle. The Nazis required Jews to wear the yellow Star not only in the camps but throughout most of occupied Europe.

These items are cataloged alphabetically. The following are reproductions of the badges worn across German-occupied Europe.


  • 1939 - 1945

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research use.

Conditions Governing Use

This element identifies any restriction on reproduction due to copyright or other reasons, as well as restriction on further use of the materials being described, such as publication, after access has been provided.


0.75 Linear Feet

Language of Materials



In the fall of 1939, the Nazi government introduced mandatory identification badges for Jews in Poland. This Nazi policy was one of the tactics used to isolate Jews from the rest of the population, and it enabled the Nazi government to identify, concentrate the Jews of Europe. The following are reproductions of the badges worn across German-occupied Europe.
Finding Aid for the Holocaust Badges collection
Tiana Taliep
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Oskar Schindler Archives Repository