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Archives at Home: Threads of the Past-Recreating Clothing of Holocaust Survivors

November 18, 2021 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm

Free

Heidi Damsky is a talented knitter, a devoted grandmother, and a globetrotter, well-versed in the history of the Holocaust. All of these characteristics converged serendipitously when a friend of Heidi’s shared a pattern for a very special child’s sweater. The pattern replicates a green sweater worn by Krystyna Chiger while hiding from the Nazis in the sewers of Lvov, Poland, from 1943 to 1944. Knitted by her beloved grandmother before the war, the sweater survived Krystyna’s harrowing experience. Heidi knitted a beautiful replica of the sweater and generously donated it Birmingham Holocaust Education Center’s archives.

Heidi participated in a similar project shortly after—this time recreating a child’s red dress. The original dress belonged to Judy Fleischer Kolb. Judy’s family escaped Nazi Germany in 1939 and lived in Shanghai as refugees, where Judy was born in 1940. Her red dress was knitted by her grandmother during these difficult years, and the original has been donated to the Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center. Like the green sweater, replicas of the red dress have been made by knitters all over, including Heidi.

Join us in conversation with Heidi as we explore how these beautiful pieces are teaching tools and reminders of life, hope, and the wartime Jewish experience.

 

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