Museum of Jewish Heritage’s new Holocaust exhibit showcases history through personal stories

NEW YORK — A new exhibit at the Museum of Jewish Heritage titled “The Holocaust: What Hate Can Do” offers a presentation of history told through personal stories.

CBS2’s Steve Overmyer got a first look at some of the items on display for the very first time.

“Remember, these people saved it from 1939 because it was a quest for freedom for them,” exhibit curator Michael Berenbaum said of memorabilia from MS St. Louis.

The ship full of Jews seeking asylum was turned back to American shores and sent back to Europe to endure the Holocaust.

“On the way back, the cruise changed from a freedom cruise to a return cruise to fate and death,” Berenbaum said.

Over 750 artifacts are on display at the Holocaust exhibit to educate – countless personal stories from the start of the journey and too many from the end.

“And remember, Eva kept this teddy bear all her life. She kept it all her life because it was the last remnant she had of her home,” Berenbaum said.

It’s painful for a Holocaust survivor to relive that experience, but Alice Ginsburg came to speak for those without a voice.

“They want the world to know this shouldn’t happen again,” she said.

“77 years have passed since the Holocaust. What has humanity learned at this time? said Overmyer.

“Unfortunately, they didn’t. There’s so much indifference and there’s a danger in indifference,” Ginsburg said.

There is a renewed focus on the Holocaust amid a wave of hate speech and hate crimes. The exhibition aims to help people think about the consequences of hate.

“We live in a world where this sadly has echoes in our world…and we need to remind people that we told you this story not to weaken you, but to strengthen you. And now it’s up to you to decide,” says Berenbaum.

The exhibit will be open to the public beginning Friday and will run through November 6 at the Battery Park City Museum of Jewish Heritage. For more information about the museum and the exhibition, visit mjhnyc.org.

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