Staffers at the Auschwitz museum found a gold ring hidden in a false bottom of one of the cups on display in the main exhibition.
During conservation work on the enamel mug, a false, bottom was discovered, the museum said in a statement.
Inside the false bottom, the staffers discovered a women’s gold ring and a gold chain. Both items were tested and the lab determined, based on the properties of the gold, that it is likely that they were made in Poland between 1921 and 1931.
“The hiding of valuable items — repeatedly mentioned in the accounts of survivors, and which was the reason for ripping and careful search of clothes and suitcases in the warehouse for looted items — proves on the one hand the awareness of the victims as to the robbery nature of the deportation, but on the other hand it shows that the Jewish families constantly had a ray of hope that these items will be required for their future existence,” Piotr Cywinski, director of Auschwitz Museum, said in the statement.
The museum’s collections feature more than 12,000 enameled kitchenware items, including cups, pots, bowls, kettles, and jugs.