Immigration documents relating to Albert Einsteins dramatic escape from Nazi Germany have been discovered and will go on show for the very first time at Merseyside Maritime Museum
Einstein, one of the most prominent figures of the last century, fled from his native Germany when Adolf Hitler came to power.
The scientist, who was Jewish, arrived in England while a bounty had been put on his head by the Nazis who named him an enemy of the regime.
The landing card is proof of Einsteins journey from Belgium to Dover on 26 May 1933. Now, after nearly 80 years stored away at Heathrow Airport, the landing card issued to the father of modern physics has been discovered by curators.
Lucy Gardner, assistant curator of the Seized! The Border and Customs Uncovered gallery at Merseyside Maritime Museum said: We didnt know this landing card ever existed until we visited UK Border Agency officers at Heathrow.
We were keen on acquiring any documents relating to immigration but were stunned to find paperwork relating to such a prominent historical figure as Albert Einstein. Whats remarkable is that the landing card bears his signature, has his profession as professor and lists his nationality at Swiss.
This shows how Einstein had renounced his German citizenship only weeks earlier in angry reaction to Nazi policies.
This tiny piece of paper brings to life Einsteins escape from the Nazis to England. This country became a safe haven for him until he eventually settled in the US.
Without doubt this is one of the most important objects obtained for the Seized! gallery in recent years and we cant wait to put it on display.
Landing cards were completed by all passengers arriving in Britain. This card marks Albert Einstein's arrival at Dover on 26 May 1933 from Ostende, Belgium. He describes his occupation as professor and nationality Swiss. On the reverse he states to Immigration officers he is bound for Oxford.
UK Border Agency National Museum (Seized! The Border and Customs uncovered) is located in the basement of the Merseyside Maritime Museum at Albert Dock. The landing card is on display from Tuesday 10 May.