Cigarette Case


This is a cigarette case that my grandfather carried and used throughout his time fighting in WWII. My grandfather lived in Palestine (in an area which is now a suburb of Tel Aviv) and registered to fight in a Jewish brigade of the British military. He fought in the North African campaign for eighteen months. Following the war, my grandfather moved back to Palestine and met my grandmother. In 1948 my grandfather fought again, yet this time he fought in the war for Israel's independence. Throughout his time fighting in 1948 he continued to carry and use this cigarette case. In the early fifties my grandparents moved to Canada, where my mother was eventually born. According to my mother, my grandfather hid this case in his closet and stopped using it once they moved to Canada (though he continued to smoke cigarettes). When my grandfather passed away in 2006, my mother retrieved this case and brought it home to New York. This is probably the only object that dates back to my mother's family's lives before the war. By looking at it I am able to fantasize about what it was like for my grandfather to fight in the desert all those years ago.

Year: 1942

– Michael Steele

Relationship:  Grandchild of im/migrant Grandchild of im/migrant