This past Tuesday, I attended the VA Holocaust Museum to tour the museum and to have dinner with two survivors of the Holocaust. I have been to the National Holocaust Museum in DC before but the tour of the VA museum was especially powerful as it tied many connections to Va to the Holocaust. One fo the most interesting things I learned about VA in relation to the Holocaust was about a farm in western VA that sheltered Jewish men that had escaped from Germany prior to the war. These men worked on the farm in order to make a living and in turn they were provided a place to live in safety away from Germany. When the war started, these men joined the allied forces and fought against Germany in WWII. I found this story unique and very interesting as it happened right here in VA.
After the tour of the museum, we sat downforce dinner and two survivors of the Holocaust spoke to our group. The man spent time in 4 different concentration camps. He claims the only reason he survived is because he was given better rations as he was a very skilled worker. The camp he was at was responsible for building rockets for the German army. He was liberated by the British army and then settled with his wife in Richmond. His wife who also survived the Holocaust had a different story than he did. She spent the Holocaust in hiding. Her father purchased fake papers for her and her sisters that claimed they were Catholic. At 14, she boarded a train with nowhere to go and eventually found work as a maid. She spent the war working as a maid under a false identity and then her and her husband moved to Richmond.
This experience was incredible as it really brought to light the horrors of the Holocaust though personal examples as well as tying the Holocaust back to Richmond