While the Georgetown Public Library is reputed to provide a pleasant change of scenery for many Southwestern students during busy weeks of study, little are we aware that the library also serves to host various intellectual exhibits every month. A few to be named are sculpture shows, musical performances and author spotlights.
From Jan. 17 through Feb. 13, the Georgetown Public Library will be co-sponsoring an historical exhibit on the lives of five Jewish families who experienced the atrocities Nazi occupied Europe. Nearly 80 years have passed since human discrimination and ideology at its worst fueled the concentrated deaths in one of the world’s largest genocides.
The Georgetown Library will be addressing this portion of world history in a call of remembrance in an exhibit entitled, “A Reason to Remember: Roth, Germany 1933-1942.”
This exhibit is part of the Hatikvah Holocaust Education Center in Springfield, Massachusetts. The Georgetown Library will be hosting guided tours, extensive display boards, interactive DVD showings and follow-up discussions for school groups based on the small Jewish community of Roth, Germany, as a microcosm for what happened in all of Nazi Europe.
“We are helping sponsor this exhibit so that people don’t forget. Most people who survived the Holocaust or who are war veterans are dying everyday. There won’t be any left. We need to remember what happened and realize the genocides since then, Rwanda, Bosnia, Darfur, Sudan, and we need to make sure that doesn’t happen ever again,” Library Director Eric Lashley said.
The Georgetown library was approached by the Congregation Havurah Shalom, which is located in Sun City. By the lead of Lenora Hausman, the congregation chose the Massachusetts based museum exhibit to lead viewers through the artifacts, images and stories of the struggles and outcomes of five Jewish families from the village of Roth during Nazi occupation. Posters are set up biographically and chronologically and outline the second floor of the Georgetown Library.
At the opening reception on Jan. 17, William Morgan, who survived the Stanislawow ghetto of Poland, spoke about his experiences and his escape at the age of 16. Morgan later learned that he was the only survivor from his village while all others had perished including his parents and six siblings.
Holocaust Remembrance Day on Jan. 27 at 2 p.m. will host the author of “Living Longer than Hate,” which is the story of William Morgan’s life and story of survival. C.S Ragsdale will not only address William Morgan’s survival, but also other interviews with survivors of Nazi experimentation and the official court reporter of the Nuremberg trials.
The Massachusetts Museum has provided educational tour training for Havurah Shalom congregation members who wish to search as docents. School groups will have tours and workshops that are aided by a guided follow-up discussion in library classrooms. DVDs will also be offered on a played loop so people can use interactive headphones as part of the classroom experience.
“Everybody that has heard has been very excited. Number of school tours scheduled is more than we ever expected. As you can tell, people just walk up here and stop to start looking at the exhibit. People immediately begin to rotate through looking at everything,” Lashley said.