Survived, but where now?
THE UNITED States Holocaust Memorial Museum has launched a social media drive to track down hundreds of Holocaust survivors as part of an ongoing exhibition and archiving project.
The museum is exhibiting and posting online portraits of 1,100 young Holocaust survivors photographed just after the Second World War.
Hoping to locate the survivors with the aim of reconnecting them to friends and family members, the exhibition, entitled Remember Me?, will also log and preserve their stories.
“When we started calling people on our survivors’ register, it was sort of unexpected for them to find out we had these photos from their childhood,” said Jude Richter, historian at the Survivors and Victims Resource Centre at the Washington-based museum. “One person told us this was the first time they had actually sat down and talked to their kids about what they went through.”
Most of the images were taken by relief workers between 1945 and 1947. Another 100 photographs were taken at Kloster Indersdorf, a United Nations-founded Bavarian children’s centre.
Since the exhibition was launched, the museum has tracked down around 180 of the children. Several came forward on Facebook, with one suited young man sporting a cowlick commenting on the old image of himself: “I am that person.” The now 80-yearold New Yorker goes on to say he is the sole survivor of a family of 15.
Linda Fisher, daughter of Hans Neumann, whose photograph features in the exhibition, says the project has had a positive influence: “My father spoke to the museum about his life as far as the concentration camp went,” she said. “His memory is better around the other survivors, their memories trigger his own.”
Berlin-born Mr Neumann, the only member of his immediate family to survive the war, was deported with his brother to Theresienstadt, where he was liberated in 1945.
Photographed after the Shoah, and being tracked down: Chaim Swinik, Victor Maurice Cohen, Martin Hecht