Cremona

Located in the hills that surround Milan, Cremona was one of the largest DP camps in northern Italy and housed between 1,000 and 1,200 refugees in 1945-47. The camp population was predominantly Jewish and was continuously in flux due to its proximity to the Austrian border, where Jews hoped to cross into Italy and arrange emigration. Founded by the UNRRA in the quarters of a requisitioned schoolhouse, Cremona DP camp suffered a severe clothing and food shortage in the summer of 1946, partially due to the difficulty of providing for a transient population. The shortage led to a decline in the population from nearly 1,100 in June 1946, to 950 in November 1946. The Joint responded by organizing the shechita (ritual slaughter) of kosher beef in Cremona. The camp also hosted the first children’s dormitory in the Italian UNRRA camps. The Joint hailed Cremona's workshops as the "best organized in the whole of Italy" in November 1946, praising the camp's success in producing small radios that the Joint distributed in other Italian camps. Cremona housed 1,142 people on March 31, 1947, several months before the population was shifted to southern Italy.

 

 

Young DPs look through the window of the offices at the displaced persons camp in Cremona, Italy.
Children in a classroom at the displaced persons camp in Cremona, Italy.
DPs stand in line for food at a displaced persons camp in Cremona, Italy.