Holocaust Memorial Day (27 January) is a day for everyone to remember the six million Jews murdered in the Holocaust, and the millions of people killed in Nazi Persecution and in subsequent genocides. The date marks the liberation of the largest Nazi death camp, Auschwitz-Birkenau.
On HMD we can all honour the survivors of these acts of hatred and learn the lessons of the past recognising that genocide does not just take place on its own, it’s a steady process which can begin if discrimination, racism and hatred are not check and prevented.
There are a number of museums and memorial centres around the world which offer opportunities for everyone to learn more about the Holocaust.
Topography of Terror
This indoor exhibition contains documents illustrating the terror and crimes of the SS and police during the Third Reich. Learn how this deadly military unit managed taskforces, concentration camps and finalised the plans laid out in the Wannsee Conference.
Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe
This prominent German Holocaust Memorial, located close to the Brandenburg Gate, consists of the Field of Stelae and the underground information centre. Spread over 19,000m2, it allows people to wander through the concrete stelae which should provoke much discussion as to the intended interpretation of the site.
Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp
The Sachsenhausen Memorial was a Nazi concentration camp from 1936-1945. First used to intern political prisoners, they were then joined by Slav prisoners of war and other prisoners considered ‘racially inferior’. It is tough that between 40,000 and 90,000 prisoners died here, with thousands more dying on the so called ‘death march’.
The Jewish museum is the perfect chance for people to learn more about German and Jewish history over the last two millennia. Designed to give visitors a somewhat ‘entrapped’ feeling, it depicts 14 historical periods from the middle ages to the present day painting a vivid portrait of Jewish life in Germany.
Galicia Jewish Museum
Priding itself on presenting Jewish history from a new perspective, the museum educates visitors to focus on the future of both Poles and Jews, as well as detailing their complex histories. It also challenges the stereotypes and misconceptions of Jewish history.
Visit the original factory building of the German industrialist, Oskar Schindler. The incredible story of this Nazi Party member, who saved the lives of over 1,200 Jewish factory workers has touched the world and was made particularly famous by the 1993 Spielberg film Schindler’s List.
With visits to both Auschwitz I and Auschwitz II- Birkenau, you will witness the horrors of where thousands of non-Jewish Poles, Roma and Sinti (Gypsies) and over 1.2 million Jews were brought from across Europe to be exploited and killed. It was here where they suffered greatly and were exterminated in gas chambers, starved or worked to death.
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum is one of the world’s leading museums and centre of research and education for the persecution of the Jews and the victims of Nazi racial policies. With its documentation, study and interpretation of Holocaust history, it serves as America’s memorial to the millions of people murdered during the Holocaust.