BEIT LOHAMEI HAGHETAOT
THE GHETTO FIGHTERS’ HOUSE
The Ghetto Fighters’ House Museum is believed to be the world’s first museum to commemorate the historical heritage of the Holocaust-era experience and Jewish resistance.
The Ghetto Fighters’ House is situated on the grounds of Kibbutz Lohamei Haghetaot (the Kibbutz of the Ghetto Fighters) in the Western Galilee. Both the kibbutz and “the House” were founded in 1949 after the establishment of the State of Israel by a community of Holocaust survivors, among them fighters of the Jewish underground in the ghettos of Poland and veterans of partisan resistance.
The mission of the Ghetto Fighters’ House Museum is to utilize educational, commemorative, and humanistic principles to present the story of the European Jewish community prior to, during and after the Holocaust.
The purpose of the Ghetto Fighters’ House is to store, present and transmit the historical heritage of the Jewish experience and resistance under the Nazi regime; to reveal the deeds of the non-Jewish “Righteous among the Nations;” and to relate the postwar challenges confronted by survivors in rehabilitating their lives.
The museum founders established the goal of imparting the values of solidarity and social responsibility to Israeli youth and to all visitors, which was the hallmark of their own lives as Holocaust survivors. They viewed the promotion of equality, justice and empathy as their primary mission in the aftermath of this horror.
Donations are currently needed to keep the museum a vital for Jewish identity and education.
1. Computerization, Preservation and Restoration of Archival Material and Documents
The Archives’ dual priorities authentic historical materials, whether official or personal, are of inestimable value. Regarding the Holocaust, the answers to countless unresolved questions and disputed matters may lie within these materials.
To realize these priorities, we at the GFH Archives engage in a coordinated, multistage program comprising the following activities:
i) Preservation and restoration of authentic original materials
ii) Conservation by producing an electronic facsimile for unlimited viewing
iii) Identifying and tagging content through electronic text search and keyed data tables
iv) Providing public access to digitized information via both the Internet and Intranet
Annual expenses – $ 32,000
2. Educational project for periphery high school students
The purpose of this project is to provide 500 students in grades 11 and 12 with two full days of exceptional educational content at the Ghetto Fighters’ House Museum prior to their school-sponsored trips to Poland.
This project targets 500 students who either reside in Israel’s geographic periphery or come from Israel’s socioeconomic periphery. These students often find access to the Ministry of Education’s required educational content prior to their school-sponsored trips to Poland to be difficult. By providing students with transportation, room and board, the Ghetto Fighters’ House Museum can target a much larger population of eligible participants.
500 students X 2 days including transportation and accommodation = $50,000
3. Create a new permanent exhibition “Facing the Glass Booth Then and Now”
Assist us in creating a new permanent exhibition with the original glass booth from the Eichmann Trial. This is the original glass booth that was designed to shield Adolf Eichmann during his trial in 1961.
Directly upon the trial’s end, the booth was given to the Museum for safekeeping. This came in recognition of the significant backing and assistance rendered to the Prosecution by the GFH Archives, at that time the most important of its kind, and for the moral and historical support given the Chief Prosecutor by Zivia Lubetkin and Yitzhak Zuckerman – key figures in the Warsaw ghetto uprising, founders of the Ghetto Fighters’ Kibbutz and the museum, and among the prominent witnesses at the trial. To this day, the Glass Booth has not been presented in a manner befitting this artifact’s potential as the anchor for an exhibition.
We hope to launch the new exhibition towards the 24th of April 2017, for the National Holocaust and Heroism Memorial Day.
Needed amount for this exhibition – $150,000
4. Warsaw during the Holocaust – a Place and a Symbol
The GFH is developing a major new historical exhibition that will focus on the city of Warsaw as representative of Eastern European Jewish life before, during and after the Holocaust. The exhibition will present repressive government edicts, life in the ghetto, deportations, and extermination, as well as life after the war. Prominent throughout the exhibition will be the youth movements’ underground educational and public activities, and their developing leadership that led to the Warsaw ghetto uprising.
The most important part of the exhibition we plan to reconstruct is the Jewish Resistance and the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising exhibition. This exhibition will present the Zionist youth movements and the Bund movement’s organization as a combat underground, following the great deportation of some 300,000 Jews from the ghetto to the death camps in the summer of 1942.
The exhibition will further display the heroic story of the hopeless uprising against the Nazi military, where the 700 fighters of the ZOB and ZZW undergrounds bravely stood. It will also show the magnificent cooperation of the Jewish inhabitants of the ghetto with the underground and the rescue and sheltering efforts of many Jews by Polish Righteous among the Nations after the uprising was crushed.
The desperate uprising will be shown as an educational virtue and as an expression of the power of the human spirit and a triumph of human solidarity.
Needed amount for this part of the exhibition – $500,000
We need to raise money for these major projects. We invite you to contribute whatever amount you care to or are able to the cause. No amount is too small, and your generosity will go far toward helping us to properly commemorate this period in history.
Information on Memorial Plaques at the Ghetto Fighters’ House
The process of producing a memorial plaque has the following stages:
1. Choosing a plaque from the options described above
2. The donor’s first payment to the Museum (50% of the total)
3. Drafting the text per the donor’s request (suitable for the plaque size)
4. Professional editing by the museum staff editor
5. The donor’s final approval of the text
6. Graphic design
7. The donor’s final approval of the design before printing
8. Producing the plaque
9. The donor’s second payment to the Museum (balance: 50%)
10.Installing the plaque
When the plaque has been printed and installed, the donor and family are welcome to hold a ceremony for its dedication. The process of producing a plaque and planning the dedication ceremony takes place in a dialogue with the donor.