Finding New Insights in Old Memories

Posted on March 3rd, 2017 by

Museum Matters: March 2017

I just completed a pre-opening walkthrough of our new special suite of exhibits, Remembering Auschwitz: History, Holocaust and Humanity.  What struck me most, was how this very familiar topic could still produce new insights.

Loss and Beauty

Loss and Beauty

In A Town Known as Auschwitz, I found myself staring at a 1915 postcard of the historic city of Oswiecim featuring the town market surrounded by the town’s two most prominent buildings – the Catholic church and the Jewish synagogue – symbols of civic pride just decades before the Holocaust.  In The Architecture of Murder from Yad Vashem, there was a chilling image of the plans for the expansion of the death camp written in the fine hand of a draftsman – oblivious to the moral context of his work.  In Loss and Beauty, there was Keron Psillas’ perfect photographic juxtaposition of the remains of the tracks at Auschwitz and the historic rail station near Terezin – labeled simply, “Arrivals/Departures”.

Holocaust Memory Reconstruction Project

Holocaust Memory Reconstruction Project

And mixed among the collages of survivor families in the Holocaust Reconstruction Project, I found one plaque that did not belong to a survivor.  It told the story of Vasilina Yarmolyuk, a righteous gentile in Poland who at great personal risk took in a Jewish child.  The plaque is located just below that of Maryland survivor, Marsha Tishler, who points out that she owes her life to Vasilina’s kindness.  Time after time I found myself staring at a document or image that triggered fresh questions about what happened, why it happened and how the surviving fraction persisted and contributed to our community.

Starting with our public opening on Sunday afternoon, you will have a chance to find your own insights.  The exhibits are up just through May 29, so you’ll want to plan to see it soon.

~ Marvin

Upcoming programs
All programs take place at the Jewish Museum of Maryland unless otherwise noted. Please contact Trillion Attwood at tattwood@jewishmuseummd.org / 443-8735177with any questions or for more information.

MARCH

Artist Insights

Artist Insights

Artist Insights: Lori Shocket and Keron Psillas
Sunday, March 5th at 2:00 pm
Included with Museum Admission – Buy Your Tickets Now
Museum Members – Reserve Your Seats Here

We are very pleased to welcome two wonderful artists  whose works are featured in Remembering Auschwitz: History, Holocaust, Humanity: Lori Shocket (The Holocaust Memory Reconstruction Project) and Keron Psillas (Loss and Beauty: Photographs by Keron Psillas) to discuss their art, their inspiration and what they have learned through their work exploring the Holocaust. More info here.

Stories of Survival

Stories of Survival

Stories of Survival: Bluma Shapiro
Featuring a live Crankie performance by Maura Roth-Gormley
Sunday, March 12, 1:00 pm
Included with Museum Admission – Buy Your Tickets Now
Museum Members – Reserve Your Seats Here

Bluma Shapiro is a Polish Holocaust survivor whose Holocaust experiences included confinement with her family in a ghetto, slave labor and deportation to several concentration and death camps including Auschwitz.  Ms. Shapiro’s testimony will be illuminated by Crankie artist Maura Roth-Gormley. More info here.

My Family Story 2016

My Family Story 2016

My Family Story Exhibit on Display
Tuesday, March 14 to Monday, March 20 
Included with Museum Admission – Buy Your Tickets Now

This year, area students from three schools, Baltimore Hebrew Congregation, Bolton Street Synagogue and Beth Tfiloh Dahan Community School embarked on a journey into the past; an exploration of family heritage, and a project that goes beyond the usual family tree.  This journey connects students to their personal stories, to their family stories and to the greater story of the Jewish People.  These students are not alone in the adventure –other students and teachers from Israel and around the Jewish world have also been on their own family explorations and are also participating in My Family Story, a project from Beit Hatfutsot’s International School for Jewish Peoplehood Studies in Tel Aviv.   Come see the personal expression and creativity of these students at the My Family Story Exhibit   that will be on display at the JMM from Tuesday, March 14th through Sunday, March 19th.

A Cabaret Evening

A Cabaret Evening

A Cabaret Evening
Sadie B. Feldman Family Lecture
Presented by The Jüdische Kulturbund Project
Wednesday, March 22nd at 7:00pm
Included with Museum Admission – Buy Your Tickets Now
Museum Members – Reserve Your Seats Here

An evening of learning and music with the team behind The Jüdische Kulturbund Project.  Gail Prensky, executive producer, will enlighten us about the history of the Nazi-era group. Vocalist Sarah Baumgarten and pianist Patrick O’Donnell will present a number of pieces previously performed by the Jüdische Kulturbund. More info here.

Architecture of Murder

Architecture of Murder

The Auschwitz Birkenau Blueprints: Facts and FAQs
Speaker: Marlene Yahalom
Sunday , March 26th at 1:00 pm
Included with Museum Admission – Buy Your Tickets Now
Museum Members – Reserve Your Seats Here

Marlene Yahalom Director of Education of the American Society of Yad Vashem will speak about the Auschwitz Birkenau blueprints which are on display in “The Architecture of Murder” section of Remembering Auschwitz: History, Holocaust, Humanity. More info here.

film poster

film poster

Movie Screening: Bogdan’s Journey  
Wednesday, March 29th at 7:30 pm
Special Guest: Anna Sommer Schneider, Georgetown University
Location: The Gordon Center
Ticket Information Here

Maryland premiere of Bogdan’s Journey: Bogdan Bialek, a Catholic Pole, launches a crusade to persuade the people of Kielce, Poland, to confront the truth about the darkest moment in their past: Kielce was the site of Europe’s last Jewish pogrom. More info here.

Esther’s Place: the Shop at the Jewish Museum of Maryland

Keron Psillas's "Loss and Beauty"

Keron Psillas’s “Loss and Beauty”

As we quickly approach the opening of Remembering Auschwitz, Esther’s Place has been thinking a lot about the nature of memory, and the objects we use to help us remember. In that vein, we are excited to offer signed copies of a beautiful book of images from Keron Psillas, an artist featured in the exhibition, who explores past and present, memory and meaning, in her haunting photographs of concentration camps.

The Holocaust Memory Reconstruction Project by Lori Shocket

The Holocaust Memory Reconstruction Project by Lori Shocket

We’re also moved to offer a book we commissioned featuring the collages that area survivors and their families created (with the help of artist Lori Shocket). For those impressed with the power of collage as an art- and memory-form, we’ve found a fantastic book, Once Upon a Piece of Paper, that will help you create your own collage. While you’re here, peruse our yahrtzeit candles, photo frames and locket necklaces carefully selected to help you celebrate and remember loved ones.

Also of Interest

The JMM is pleased to share our campus with B’nai Israel Congregation. For additional information about B’nai Israel events and services for Shabbat, please visit bnaiisraelcongregation.org.  For more of this month’s events from BIYA, please visit biyabaltimore.org or check out BIYA on Facebook.

Totally 90s

Totally 90s

Looking for the perfect Purim party? B’nai Israel has you covered with their totally neon 90s themed celebration, starting at 7:30pm on Saturday, March 11th. More info, including ticket sales, here.

Ongoing at the JMM

Exhibits

Opening Sunday

Opening Sunday

Exhibits currently on display include Voices of Lombard Street: A Century of Change in East Baltimore, and The Synagogue Speaks with Remembering Auschwitz: History, Holocaust, Humanity opening on Sunday.

Hours and Tour Times

Combination tours of the 1845 Lloyd Street Synagogue and the 1876 Synagogue Building now home to B’nai Israel are offered: Sunday through Thursday at 11:00am, 1:00pm and 2:00pm.

Click Here for complete hours and tour times

Membership

Make it official! Become a Member of the JMM.
Learn More about membership.
Already ready? Join Here.

Get Involved

The JMM is always looking for volunteers! Click Here to learn more.

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Museum Matters: March 2015

Posted on March 6th, 2015 by

Snow More

We have left February behind us and the forecast is “great programs” at JMM for the month ahead.  So make the exodus from winter and join us at one of this month’s activities.  We’ll be putting our own twist on the preparations for welcoming spring this Passover:  Matzah making for all ages on March 19 and a report from the tombs of Egypt on March 29.

And of course, all month long you can join Mendes Cohen for his journey (into) and out of Egypt in the A-Mazing Mendes Cohen exhibit.  Examine the treasures that Mendes brought back to Johns Hopkins as well as the flag and jacket he took down the Nile.  Looking ahead – if you have kids, and I don’t “had gadya”-type kids, be sure to mark your calendar for April 12 – in honor of Mendes’ journey we are hosting our first (and only) Egypt Family Day.  Have fun with an archeological dig and ancient Egyptian-inspired crafts.  This event is strictly BYOM*.

*bring your own mummy (and daddy)

Upcoming Programs

Please note that unless otherwise noted, all programs take place at the Jewish Museum of Maryland (15 Lloyd Street, Baltimore, MD 21202). For more information and to RSVP for specific programs, contact Carolyn Bevans*: (410) 732-6400 x215 / cbevans@jewishmuseummd.org. For more information on JMM events please visit www.jewishmuseummd.org. *Carolyn is filling in for new mom Trillion Attwood from January through March.

Matzah Madness for preschoolDaytime Matzah Madness!
Thursday, March 19th
11:00am – 12:00pm Hands-On Holiday: Matzah Making for Pre-schoolers
1:30pm – 2:30pm A Golden Holiday: Matzah Making for Seniors
Program included with Museum Admission

 

Rectangle adLate Night on Lloyd Street: Matzah Madness & Wine Tasting
Thursday, March 19th @ 6:00pm
FREE!

During the Passover Seder, we don’t just hear the story of Exodus; we see, smell, feel and taste liberation. Prepare for this multi-sensory experience with a night of wine tasting and matzah making! Matzah and wine are both central Passover symbols. Join us as we learn about the significance of matzah with Rabbi Levi Druk of Chabad Downtown and sample a variety of mevushal wines from Canton Crossing Wine & Spirits. Finally, have the chance to make your own matzah to share with friends and family for the holiday!

Panel 43.Egypt.JohnsHopkinsWhat the Ancient Egyptians Took with Them—and Why
Speaker Dr. Betsy Bryan, Johns Hopkins University
Sunday, March 29, 1:00 p.m.
Program Free with Museum Admission

Mendes Cohen spent several months travelling in Egypt building a wonderful collection of antiquities that would later go on to form the basis of the Johns Hopkins Archaeological Museum. We are very excited to be welcoming museum director Prof. Betsey Bryan to talk about the collection Mendes developed and the Egypt Mendes would have encountered during his travels.

IMG_0212Family Activity Day: Egypt
Sunday, April 12
12:00pm – 4:00pm
$5 Admission for Families

Join us for a fun filled day of hands-on activities for all things Egypt! Learn about archaeological digs (and try your hand at a little digging of your own) and Ancient Egypt-inspired crafts!

More Programs

Baltimore Jewish Council
Essay Contest!
The Baltimore Jewish Council is sponsoring a high school student essay contest as part of its 2015 Yom HaShoah Commemoration for Holocaust Remembrance. As part of this year’s theme, Remember the Children, students will be asked to answer the following questions:

  • Why should the lessons of the Holocaust be passed on to a new generation?
  • What can young people do to combat and prevent prejudice, discrimination and violence in our world today?

Applications are available on the Baltimore Jewish Council website. Entries must be received by 5:00 p.m. on Friday, March 20, 2015. Israel Bonds will be awarded to first, second and third place winners: 1st Place $300, 2nd Place $200, 3rd Place $100.

Gordon Center for Performing Arts
IMG_1113-1Stoop Storytellers: Looking for storytellers!
Baltimore’s own Stoop Storytelling Series is coming to the Gordon Center for Performing Arts on Thursday, June 11, 2015  for a show entitled “Family Circus: Stories about twisted sisters, funny uncles, and mommies dearest.”

Email us at info@stoopstorytelling.com if you’ve got a true, personal story that matches the theme! For tickets http://www.jcc.org/gordon-center/gordon-live/

Baltimore Jewish Film Festival:
Don’t miss the 27th Annual Baltimore Jewish Film Festival March 22-April 28, 2015 at the Gordon Center for Performing Arts Featuring 11 internationally acclaimed films, all Baltimore Premieres!​

stateless-poster-fullStateless
Sunday, April 26 at 3:00 pm
A special co-presentation with the Jewish Museum of Maryland and The Herbert H. and Irma B. Risch Memorial Program on Immigration. Buy your tickets today!

 

B’nai Israel Congregation
The JMM is pleased to share our campus with B’nai Israel Congregation. For additional information about B’nai Israel events and services for Shabbat, please visit bnaiisraelcongregation.org.  For more of this month’s events from BIYA, please visit biyabaltimore.org or check out BIYA on facebook.

Jewish Genealogy Society of Maryland March Meeting
Why the New York Times Is Wrong:
Using Basic Genealogical Tools to Show That Your Family Name Was Not Changed at Ellis Island

Speaker: Ken Bravo
Sunday, March 22, 1:30 pm, Pikesville Library’s meeting room

The program is free for paid members and $5 for non-members (applied to membership fee when a visitor joins JGSMD) after their first meeting. Refreshments will be available. Please check the web site at www.jgsmd.org for late updates and for the time, location, and program of future meetings.

Exhibits

Exhibits currently on display include The A-mazing Mendes Cohen (on display through June 14, 2015), Voices of Lombard Street: A Century of Change in East Baltimore, and The Synagogue Speaks!

Hours and Tour Times

The JMM is open Sunday-Thursday, 10am – 5pm.

Combination tours of the 1845 Lloyd Street Synagogue and the 1876 Synagogue Building now home to B’nai Israel are offered: Sunday through Thursday at 11:00am, 1:00pm and 2:00pm.  We offer tours focused on the Lloyd Street Synagogue, Sunday through Thursday at 3:00pm and on Sunday at 4:00pm.  Our new Lloyd Street “1845: Technology and the Temple” tour is available every Sunday and Monday at 3:00 until The A-Mazing Mendes Cohen closes in June 2015.

Get Involved

The JMM is looking for volunteers to help staff our front desk, work in the gift shop, and lead tours as docents. No prior knowledge or training is required. All that is needed is an interest in learning about the JMM, our historic sites, exhibits, and programs and a desire to share this knowledge with the public. All volunteers are provided with thorough training. If you are interested in learning more about our volunteer program, please contact Volunteer Coordinator Ilene Cohen at 410.732.6400 x217 or icohen@jewishmuseummd.org.

Membership

Revamped and revitalized, membership at the JMM is now better than ever – with new categories, benefits, and discounts to enrich every visit to the Museum for you and your friends and families.

All members receive our monthly e-newsletter, along with a 10% discount at the Museum store, free general admission to the Museum, free admission to all regular programs, attendance at exclusive member opening events and discounted weekday parking at the City-owned garage at 1001 E. Fayette Street.

Your membership provides much needed funding for the many programs that we offer and we hope we can count on you for your continued support. Memberships can be purchased online! http://jewishmuseummd.org/get-involved/museum-membership/ For more information about our membership program, please contact Sue Foard at (410) 732-6400 x220 or sfoard@jewishmuseummd.org.

JMM Museum Shop

Flip Frog sequencePassover begins at sundown April 3, 2015!  Gather around your Seder table with family and friends..share your stories and enjoy the foods of Passover! Our JMM Museum Shop has hand-picked Seder plates to grace your table including this 13” decorative glass plate, on which rests six floral dishes and an available Kiddush cup, all by Quest in their Freesia Passover Collection.

For children (and adults too!) we have assorted frogs, finger puppets and bouncing matzoh balls!

Are you ready for Passover?

Are you ready for Passover?

Every purchase made in the JMM Museum Shop supports the mission and programs of the Jewish Museum of Maryland.
JMM Members receive a 10% discount on all purchases.

For  further information, call Esther Weiner, Museum Shop Manager, 410-732-6400, ext. 211 eweiner@jewishmuseummd.org

 

Posted in jewish museum of maryland




Three Roses for Women’s History Month

Posted on March 26th, 2012 by

A blog post by Research Historian Deb Weiner. In honor of Women’s History Month, here are profiles of three Baltimore Jewish women whose landmark accomplishments are worth recalling, culled from the JMM archives.

Rose Shanis Glick came from Russia with her family in 1911, at age 12. As a young woman she became manager of a loan company. The owner promised she would have her job waiting for her when she returned from getting married, but when she got back, his son was sitting at her desk. So she started her own lending firm in 1932, in the midst of the Depression. Rose used the fact that she was a woman to her advantage. First, she built her business around lending to other women. This was a wise financial move: since women couldn’t get loans from conventional sources, she had the field to herself. She lent to housewives and waitresses, teachers and cleaning women, and entrepreneurs like herself. Second, she developed a great slogan: “Let me handle your financial problems as only a woman can.” It worked: soon she was serving all kinds of people.

Even as her company grew, Rose kept a personal touch. She lent money for purposes that more established companies wouldn’t touch: for a winter’s supply of coal, for Catholic families to buy school uniforms, for a taxi driver to get a license, for a gambler to pay off a Pimlico race track debt, for a woman to get an abortion. (Her husband disagreed with her over this last loan, but she told him it was better to help the woman go to a competent doctor, rather than get a cheap and dangerous procedure.) She loaned striking Bethlehem Steel workers money to tide them over until they went back to work, at no interest. During World War II she waived the interest on loans to customers serving overseas (and also sent each of them a pack of cigarettes).

Shanis’s reputation grew to the point that a Baltimore Sun columnist began calling her “The Lady Santa.” Combining her instinct for helping people with a shrewd business sense, she started using the nickname in her advertising. She became extremely successful—eventually, there were nine Rose Shanis Loan operations. She loved her work so much that at the end of her life she had her children bring her monthly business reports to her death bed. Her son took over the business after she died.

Rose Shanis in 1924.

Rose Zetzer became one of only five woman lawyers in Maryland in 1925. Unable to get a job at an established firm—though some offered to hire her as a secretary—she worked on her own before forming Maryland’s first all-female law firm with partner Anna Carton in 1941. (Two other women later joined the partnership.) Zetzer also waged a campaign to join the male-only Maryland State Bar Association, which finally admitted her as its first woman member in 1946. She and other female lawyers had formed the Women’s Bar Association in 1927; she served as president for several years.

Zetzer was a champion of legal aid for the poor, becoming the first woman to serve on the board of the Legal Aid Bureau. She devoted herself to Jewish causes as well, including Hadassah and the Jewish Big Brother League.

Rosalie Silber Abrams graduated from the Sinai Hospital School of Nursing and served as a nurse in the U.S. Navy before marrying and raising a family. At age fifty, she decided to embark on a political career. She won election to the Maryland House of Delegates in 1966 and became a state senator four years later. During her eighteen-year career, she helped pass bills focused on patient rights, child welfare, mental health care reform, environmental protection, and women’s rights. Her accomplishments included the creation of the state’s Health Service Cost Review Commission, a groundbreaking initiative to control hospital rates and enhance patient care.

Rosalie Abrams

Chosen Senate Majority Leader in 1979, Abrams was the first woman to hold a major leadership post in the Maryland General Assembly and also became the first female chairman of the state’s Democratic Party. She retired from the Senate to head the state Office on Aging in 1983, where she served until retiring in 1996. Though she began her political career relatively late in life, her background in health care, confidence, and practical political skills gained her the respect of her colleagues and made her an exemplary advocate for health and welfare issues.

Posted in jewish museum of maryland