Exhibits - This is Home Now
"Everybody knew about me. Refugees,
survivors, you know. In 1946, we were the only ones in Lexington.
just wanted to see me, like I was a novelty."
Is Home Now: Kentucky’s Holocaust Survivors,” a multi-media exhibit
exploring the lives of nine Holocaust survivors who have made their
homes in Kentucky, opened at the Lexington History Museum on May 12.
The exhibit was created by oral historian Arwen Donahue and photographer
Rebecca Howell. Eight of Kentucky’s Holocaust survivors from around the
state were present at the exhibit’s opening, which takes place from 5:30
to 9:00 p.m. The program featured the survivors’ reflections on their
lives in Kentucky.
The opening closely coincided with
the 60th anniversary of the Allied victory in Europe on May
8, which effectively ended World War II. Several of the survivors
featured in the exhibit are also recognizing the 60th anniversary of their liberation from Nazi death camps at Buchenwald and
Bergen-Belsen, which took place in April of 1945.
Most Holocaust survivors who came to the United States following the Nazi attempt to
exterminate the Jews of Europe settled in large cities, but a few came
to Kentucky about 40 are now living in the state. Using texts, recent
photographic portraits, and audio stations playing excerpts from oral
history interviews, This Is Home Now tells the stories of nine of
these survivors. The exhibit explores the survivors initial reactions
to Kentucky and American culture, including reflections on racial
segregation and rural life, as well as their current lives.
The exhibit has been made possible with the help of grants from the Kentucky Historical Society, the Kentucky Humanities Council, and the Kentucky Arts Council, and with
the support of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum.
Watch this site for details of
programs related to the exhibit including a symposium in conjunction
with the Kentucky Historical Society slated for the fall. Details from
program director Arwen Donahue.