The People of Prejudice and Memory

PREJUDICE AND MEMORY: A HOLOCAUST EXHIBIT is a compilation of the memories, artifacts and photographs of Holocaust survivors, liberators (Americans who freed concentration camp victims at the end of the war), and rescuers (non-Jews who helped save Jews at great risk to themselves and their families).

What makes PREJUDICE AND MEMORY different from most exhibits on this subject is that it tells the personal stories of people who live or have lived in the Dayton area.

THESE ARE YOUR NEIGHBORS. Unless told or recorded, Holocaust stories will die, leaving the door open for another such horrendous persecution to happen – perhaps to another group of people – because of prejudice and hatred arising from ignorance and history unremembered.

People respond best to the individual story. I have discovered that personally as I spoke to thousands of school children and other audiences for the past thirty years. A single picture, a passport with the red letter “J,” a letter revealing the death of grandparents in Auschwitz, these touch one’s soul.

This exhibit remembers the millions killed but focuses on the individual – mother, father, child. It tells stories of incredible courage, of horror, sacrifice, loss and rebirth.

We are eternally grateful that we can join in partnership with the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force in presenting PREJUDICE AND MEMORY.  We thank the former Museum director, Major General Charles D. Metcalf, USAF (ret.) for his vision and foresight. We are also very proud to include in the exhibit a tribute to the unknown hundreds of American prisoners of war who were also part of the Holocaust tragedy.

Many others on the Museum staff have contributed to make this presentation unique. Their interest and empathy enrich the Dayton Holocaust Resource Center’s mission. The volunteer docents make a visit to the exhibit a true learning experience which children and adults tell us they will never forget.

We are proud to have as part of the exhibit thirty-one black and white photographs, called PLACES OF HA’SHOAH, by Cy Lehrer of Tucson, Arizona.

Words cannot express our appreciation for the most generous contribution made by Ronald S. Lauder of New York that allowed us to begin this journey. And to all the subsequent contributors and grantmakers we are most grateful.

With the MEMORY of the past and a firm hope that PREJUDICE will disappear in the near future, with a complete faith in the resilience of the human spirit and a hope for the healing of the world, we offer this exhibit to those who enter these halls of history.

Renate Frydman, Curator and Project Director

Click here to download podcasts to your smart phone before visiting the exhibit.  The podcasts cannot be downloaded while in the Museum because cell phone communication is blacked out on the air force base.