Messages from Survivors

The Bancroft Public Library brings “Messages From Survivors,” a powerful new exhibit about the Holocaust, survival and resiliency to Salem.

“We could never believe that a thing like this could happen. But it did happen. . . . That’s why it’s very important to tell people and hopefully it will not repeat itself. This is my husband’s dream and mine.” —Anna Jacobs, Holocaust survivor

The Bancroft Public Library presents a traveling exhibit, “Messages From Survivors: One Family’s Holocaust Legacy. The exhibit is built on 40 years of filming a family of Holocaust survivors in the Bronx, Miami and a bungalow colony in the Catskills between 1962 and 2016.

In the exhibit, six short videos introduce the Holocaust through powerful personal stories of a family of Holocaust survivors. Six exhibit panels researched using the US Holocaust Memorial Museum’s resources provide historical context for the video footage. The exhibit covers the family’s experiences from 1938 through the 21st century.

A feature of the exhibit is the use of QR codes to bring the Holocaust survivors’ voices directly into people’s lives, both onsite and at home. Take-home cards keep the story alive once visitors return home. Each card contains stories of family members–some who survived and some who didn’t along with QR code links to the videos.

“I want people to feel as if they are personally meeting my family. My parents met at a forced labor camp. My mother’s entire immediate family was murdered and my father lost most of his family. My mother said, “No one could believe things could get so bad. But they did.” Their message to the world was, “Don’t let it happen again. No place. In no country.” We hope this exhibit will inspire every community to address even the smallest incidents of hatred, injustice and cruelty.

—Roz Jacobs, Co-Creator of Messages from Survivors

Exhibit co-creator, Laurie Weisman adds, “The Jacobs family shows us that resilience and joy can co-exist with loss and pain. By sharing their stories, we share their hard-earned wisdom with the world.”

Working in partnership with the Southern Adirondack Library System they will bring Messages From Survivors to Bancroft Public Library during September and October.

The Bancroft Public Library is excited to bring this new program to our community because there are so few survivors around to share their experiences and these personal stories offer first-person testimony that makes it real. We hope the take-home cards will generate meaningful conversations at homes and in schools. Come visit the exhibit at the library during our regular hours. Mondays – 1:00 – 6:00, Tuesdays – 1:00 – 8:00, Wednesdays – 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m., Thursdays – 1:00 – 8:00, Fridays – 1:00 – 5:00 and Saturdays – 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Be sure to check our website and Facebook page for upcoming programs and events at the library having to do with the exhibit. This traveling exhibit will be at the Bancroft Public Library through the end of October.

The Memory Project Productions, Inc. creators of Messages From Survivors is a New York-based non-profit organization that creates exhibits and programs devoted to social justice, art and remembrance. Its exhibits have toured the U.S., Poland and Hungary. Their award-winning film, Finding Kalman, has been broadcast nationally on PBS stations.

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