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Archival Items Exhibited in Paris Now Return to GFH

Unique items lent for exhibition to the Mémorial de la Shoah in Paris were returned to the archive of Ghetto Fighters’ House. As part of GFH’s international collaborative activity, a representative from this Paris museum came to Israel a year ago to examine the materials available here for an exhibit about the fate of Jewish children during the Holocaust. The items sent by Ghetto Fighters’ House attracted considerable attention and were even the subject of study days and gatherings held at the Mémorial de la Shoah.

One of the items was the diary of Janina Hescheles, a native of Lvov, who was 12-years old when she wrote these passages. The entries were written three weeks after Janina escaped from the Janowska Camp, while in hiding in Krakow under the protection of Polish underground activist Wanda Janowska, later Wanda Wojcik. Janina’s father had been the editor of Chwila, a Jewish-Zionist newspaper published in Galicia.

Janina Hescheles is today Janina Altman, a doctor of chemistry who lives in Haifa and is a long-time friend of Ghetto Fighters’ House. Janina was a guest of the Paris museum and participated in an emotional evening prepared and moderated by Dr. Livia Parnes. Poems written by Janina while in hiding were read at the event; these poems are preserved in the Ghetto Fighters’ House archive.

Another article on display at the exhibition was the diary of Edith Zierer, one of “Lena Kuchler’s Children”. Edith, also a long-time friend of Ghetto Fighters’ House, was a guest of the Paris museum at the events prior to the opening of the exhibition. Her diary, written weeks after the war, was the subject of great interest. A comment in Lena Kuchler’s handwriting at the end of the diary notes that Edith’s poor health does not allow her to continue writing.

We believe that cooperation with other museums and archives in this same area is valuable and important.

Anat Bratman-Elhalel
Director, Archives Department


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