Exhibition of Archive of Warsaw Ghetto opened
PR dla Zagranicy
The Archive of the Warsaw Ghetto is a “priceless testimony to the most tragic chapter in Polish-Jewish history”, the Polish president has said at the opening of a new exhibition of the WWII documents.
The Jewish Ghetto in Warsaw. Photo: Wikimedia Commons/Bundesarchiv, N 1576 Bild-003/ Herrmann, Ernst (CC-BY-SA 3.0)
The exhibition, called “What we were unable to shout out to the world” is on show at the Jewish Historical Institute in Warsaw.
Between 1940 and 1942, Emanuel Ringelblum and other people living in the ghetto formed a group called Oneg Szabat, Hebrew for Joy of the Sabbath, and collected tens of thousands of pages documenting life in the ghetto in war-time Poland under the brutal occupation of Nazi Germany.
The documents came to be known as the Archives of the Warsaw Ghetto.
The archives included more than 700 pages of reports, diaries and memoirs, nearly 400 folders of official documents, 120 academic papers, and dozens of pieces of literature, photographs, and underground newspapers.
They were stored in ten metal boxes and buried in the ghetto and survived the war to be dug up on 19 September 1946.
“Thanks to their work, we know the tragic reality of daily life in the ghetto,” Polish President Andrzej Duda said.
He added that the archives “do not show a shadow of joy, but there is a posthumous victory over the executioner because, thanks to Oneg Szabat, the memory of the victims survived”.
He said that Nazi Germany had wanted not only to exterminate Jews but also destroy any memory of their history.
“As president of Poland I am deeply convinced that it is our duty to proclaim the truth about the extermination of the Jews” by the Germans, Duda said.
The Emanuel Ringelblum Jewish Historical Institute earlier this year launched a programme to make the Archives of the Warsaw Ghetto available online. (vb/pk)