ST. PETERSBURG – A Survivor Talk and Reception will be presented Thursday, July 31, 6:30 p.m., at The Florida Holocaust Museum, 55 Fifth St. S.
The event is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served. Attendees must RSVP. Call 820-0100, ext. 271.
The event will be presented in honor of the museum’s latest exhibition, Jewish Refugees in Shanghai (1933-1941). Gary Silvers, Holocaust survivor and Shanghai refugee, will share his family's escape from Nazi Germany and time spent living in Shanghai.
The exhibition Jewish Refugees in Shanghai (1933-1941) brings together for the first time photos, personal stories and artifacts from the Shanghai Jewish Refugee Museum, located in the former Ohel Moshe Synagogue in the Tilanqiao Historic Area of Shanghai.
To supplement the exhibit, the FHM will display artifacts from its collection recently donated by Susan Fader, a child of Holocaust Survivors and refugees to Shanghai. Incredible artifacts like her parents' Chinese marriage certificate and objects from the Jewish ghetto in Shanghai will be on display. Fader also will speak at the reception about her parents and her collection.
"China was the only place left that accepted people with no possessions," said Fader in a press release.
After Fader's parents arrived, the Japanese put refugees and locals together in ghettos. When the British came to the rescue and the war ended, the couple married in Shanghai so they could relocate to the United States together.
"I've never known of any other exhibition like this in the world, so the fact that it's even happening and presented in a very human way is very emotional and exciting for me," said Fader.
The exhibition Jewish Refugees in Shanghai (1933-1941) will be on display on the museum's third floor through Aug. 31.
About the exhibition
From 1933 to 1941, Shanghai became a modern-day "Noah's Ark" accepting some 18,000 Jewish refugees fleeing the Holocaust in Europe. Most were from Germany and Austria, but the refugees also included students of the famed Mir Yeshiva, the only yeshiva in occupied Europe to survive the Holocaust. In the "Designated Area for Stateless Refugees" in Tilanqiao area of Shanghai, Jewish refugees lived harmoniously with local Chinese, overcoming numerous difficulties together.
Conditions in the impoverished Hongkou District were harsh: 10 per room, near starvation, disastrous sanitation and scant employment. With the aid of Iraqi Jews living in Shanghai, and later of Russian Jewish locals and the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, most of the Jewish refugees managed to survive and many went on to have remarkable lives. Holocaust historian David Kranzler called it the "Miracle of Shanghai."
This exhibition was created by the Shanghai Jewish Refugee Museum.
About the Florida Holocaust Museum
The Florida Holocaust Museum honors the memory of millions of innocent men, women and children who suffered or died in the Holocaust. The museum is dedicated to teaching members of all races and cultures the inherent worth and dignity of human life in order to prevent future genocides.